Hi. Welcome to another filmmaking tutorial.
My name is Tom Antos. And today I’m going to talk about umbrella lights
and their use in fashion, glamor photography and music videos. Here’s an example that
we’re going to be working on. This is the original scene. And we’re going to turn this into this shot. This example uses only three lights.
As in most of my tutorials, I try to stick to as few lights as possible.
And also to lights that are available to most people out there, so you can try this on your
production at home, but still be able to get professional results.
So, the first thing I’ll start off is explaining what are umbrella lights.
Umbrella lights are basically, as you see in this example… an umbrella with a silver
lining inside it, which allows you to bounce light off it.
It is very similar to any kind of a reflector. It’s used in photography or film or video productions. The difference is the shape of it. Because of its curved shape, it bounces light
within the umbrella… internally a lot more, creating a very even, soft kind of a look.
Umbrella lights are sort of like soft boxes, but they are a little bit less directional
and the shadows, I would say, are even softer. Here is the light that I’m going to use
in this example. It mounts on a standard light stand.
You can buy this mount that holds the light bulbs and umbrella together on eBay or in
any kind of a photography store. Just look out there.
This one that I got cost me $80, I believe, altogether.
Basically, what it does, it mounts on a standard light stand and then it will allow you attach an umbrella. The umbrella that I’m using in this example
is fairly large. It’s around 45 or 50 inches, I believe.
Which is probably as big an umbrella as you will ever want. It will allow you to light
a pretty big area. Let’s say you’re lighting a model. You’ll
can light them from head to toe. You can see me up here mounting the umbrella
into this light stand… And then up here, I’m going to put in two
light bulbs. These are fluorescent light bulbs. They are about a 100W each.
The reason why I’m using fluorescent as opposed to tungsten lights is because this
umbrella that I have cannot handle very high temperatures.
And since fluorescent lights produce very little heat, they work perfectly.
If I were to put, let’s say, a 1000W tungsten light, it would probably melt the umbrella,
or set the whole thing on fire, which is not the safest way to work.
Whereas these two fluorescent light bulbs together they draw around 200W, yet the amount
of light they output is comparable to, probably, around a 600W tungsten light.
So, they’re pretty nice and strong. And basically what you do is point these light bulbs
straight at the umbrella, not at your subject. So that you’re not lighting the subject
directly with the light bulbs. Instead, what you’re doing is allowing the
light to bounce all over the umbrella and then shine back onto your subject…
creating a big light source. Then, the second kind of a light that I’m
going to be using in this example is a 1000W tungsten.
These are actually Red Heads. You see me mounting them up here.
And here in the back I adjust them to “Spot” so that they limit the amount of spill.
This way, they create this very concentrated light source.
Here is a little diagram of how the whole set-up looks.
We start with the camera… pointing it at our foreground subject
and in the corner on the left side, we’ll see our background subject leaning against
the post. Again, this whole set-up is located at the
back of this little restaurant / lounge, that had a lot of very nice practical lights…
on the walls, the chandeliers that you see there in the corner,
which add a lot to the overall look of this shot. Once again, this is something that I talk
about in Tutorial 1 and then later on, in Tutorial, I believe, 3.
Production value, location, scouting, all those kind of things, they all add up to the overall look of your shot.
So, it’s something to pay attention to. Then here I add the 200W umbrella, which is
just off to the left side of the camera and around six feet away from the subject.
And then I just put two of the 1000W lights. One aiming straight at the subject in the background
and just illuminating her. And then another one to the right side, slightly
behind our foreground subject… creating this rim light from the side.
It adds a more dramatic touch to the shot. And here is the final shot.
What it still is missing is a little bit of color correction,
which we’ll do at the end. I want to show you a few more examples of
what you can do with umbrella lights. Here are a few photographs that I took a few
years back of this model. In here, as you can see, what allowed me to
create this very even, soft kind of a light – no harsh shadows, as you can see; the skin
also looks very, very smooth and silky. That’s kind of what big umbrella lights
are good for, because they add this very even and very soft reflection on the skin…
or any metal object. You can see up here when you look at the bracelet
she’s wearing. Or also in the eyes of the subject or any
kind of shiny surfaces. It just adds this nice sparkle, this glamor
look to your shot. Now, we’re going to go back to our example.
Here is with the color correction our final, final shot.
I’m intercutting it here with a wider version of that shot.
All I simply did was I changed out the lens. I started out on a 50mm lens
and then I switched to a 24mm lens. And I didn’t have to readjust the lights.
This way I got two different kinds of shots that I can intercut together.
And here is the final thing. I hope you guys enjoyed this tutorial. If
you have any more suggestions, comments, please leave them below and also,
if you create any videos yourself using some of these techniques
that I explained up here, feel free to respond to this video
and I’m going to add it so others can see. And also, if you have any questions or comments, message me or email me.