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Sunday
Jun242012

Lighting green screen.

Luke Seerveld is a friend of mine in the Bay Area. Besides being a producer he is also an LD and has a small lighting truck that we use often. A while back we were on a set and Luke was lighting a nearly head to toe green screen shot. From a post production stand point, the trick to a great key is two things. 

1. Seperation

2. Green tubes in your background lights. 

I want you to look at two things in these photos. In the top one Luke is standing on the talents spike mark. In the lower one he is standing back next to the backdrop in the green light.  Notice he is totally “hulked out” in the shot where he is standing further back, thats becuase he is standing in the green light that is cast by the green tubes. Also, look at the waveform in the lower right corner of the monitor. No falloff! Thanks Luke!!

Luke standing on the talents mark. Luke standing against the backdrop in the green light.

By the way, like any GOOD LD, Luke is about 13 feet tall, hence the pose.

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    The next step is setting up a key lig Existance ht - your main light - the one which is focused on the actor’s face and body. The key light should be diffused giving a soft and even look. The next light also goes on the actor, and it’s what’s called ...
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Reader Comments (2)

Most green screen rental studios have connections with stages that have a lot of room space that allow for complex movement when filming and give the ability for filmmakers to film high speed motions.

July 6, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterkamrul

To follow up. Using green kino tubes or green gel on background green screen lights only works if you're camera angle of view is not seeing the subject from head to toe. As soon as you see the floor, with the subject standing on it, you'll need to light the green and the subject with the same colored light. This sounds obvious, but is important to consider because choosing to shoot "head to toe" takes more prep than knees up, especially in the field.

Separation of subject from background green is key (pun intended), and an even level of light, good color saturation, and edge light to separate the talent from green background are all important aspects of successful green screen lighting. The ratio of light level of subject to background is an variable that we like to debate. Some people like 1:1, others might want the background at 50 units while the subject is at 65.

Yet another consideration is who will be pulling the key and with what software. If Chris is making it happen in post, you're in good hands!

July 31, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLuke Seerveld

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