Test Shoot: Long Exposure with Gels


Lighting with Gels


Lesson Info

Test Shoot: Long Exposure with Gels

So, we did a little bit of pre-light, not too much. The only thing I have set right now is sort of this overhead, using that teal light again, 'cause I was feeling that teal light. So, I drop that in overhead, and we're gonna get Godfrey over here, just to get your scale and your position. Just check you out over here. We're gonna deal with the lights, build 'em up one at a time, see if we can make it happen. Right, so, you're gonna stand right in there, and I want you just to face, maybe we just give him a little bit of a mark, Chris or something? Yeah, you got it. Yeah, so he knows right where he is. Okay, and just face the other way, if you wouldn't mind. Wonderful, cool, right on. So, I'm using a much longer lens right now. So, I wanna get kind of far away from him. I'm using this 70 to 200, because my roll of paper, they get pretty small, pretty quick, right? Yep, sorry am I in your way? That's gonna work. And I'm just checking out the overhead light. Yeah, come a little bit c...

loser for me. Sure. We there? Alright cool. Right on. Alright. So it's interesting, is that back light firing right now? Yes it is. Alright, it is. Let's turn it off for a second, just so we can see one light at a time. So that already looks really sweet to me, just the combination of that teal and that blue are looking good. Let's just take a look at what the teal light, teal light is in my soft box overhead, just seeing what that's doing. One more. Yeah. That's five six nine at ISO 100. Okay. Alright, I'm gonna shoot that at six three. And, yeah, that's looking pretty good. I just want it to be a little bit of fill in my shot. I'm not looking this light to be the be all, end all shot. I'm just looking at the kiss over top there, and it's pretty cool. Right on. Yeah, it's looking good. Let's see it over here, Chris, what our detail's like. I do think, Chris. Yes, sir. If you wouldn't mind very carefully, just walking that one foot forward, 'cause I think it's not getting into him enough here, right? So I'm just gonna pull it a little bit forward, and then for my background light, I just have it on a floor stand here, and it's got this blue gel, no grid in there, just the straight up blue gel. And I wanna light the background pretty evenly, so I pulled it pretty far back on a floor stand. Can you just turn that on, Chris? Sure. And get a couple readings on it. Alright, so let's see. Ready for a pop? Yeah. So that's two eight three, you wanna come up a bunch? No, let's see where it's at, see if we like it. See you back there with it, yeah, okay. Uh huh, just get out of there. Right, can we see with and without? Mm hmm. So right here, this is without background light, that's with. So it's subtle. It's just kind of putting a little bit of glow back there. And, I'm worried that it's a little bit too light overall. Can we come down at all on that light, Chris? On the background or the main one? On the background. Yeah, it's at five. So you wanna go to three? Come to four please, go down one stop on it. Yeah, that's four. I'm trying to keep my background dark. If I don't have a dark background in this shot, when he moves, it's not gonna work, it's not gonna pick up the trails of light, like if it's over-lit in the background, kinda needs some darkness for the trails to fill into. Right on. Alright. And can we um, he's actually gonna pretend that he's like a boxer, like Kimbo Slice, like some crazy, 'cause you got that sort of cage-fighting, I don't know, cage-fighting man. Alright, so Chris can we get this light plugged in? Sure. Gonna add a edge light up the side here. This is gonna be pure white light, edge light. No gels in here, just white light. I do think like, for me to like how gel lighting looks, I don't like everything to be gel. Sometimes I like it when there's something close to a white or normal light in there. I just think it goes to, it gives my eye a highlight or something to go to in the picture. Sometimes when it's all just covered in color I don't know what to look at. You close Chris? Yeah, we're plugged in. Right on, so let me just talk about my meter readings here for a second. Six three. Can you give me some pops, Chris? I can. I'll do the meter for a change. Yeah, the strip bank on the back is on, just so you know. Yeah, alright, six three. This is like reading about five six right here. Go ahead. Yeah, five six and a half, which is what my camera's set to, six three, so I'm right about there. My key light is where it's supposed to be. My background light is, go ahead, about two eight and a half. So there's about three stops difference there. And now I'm bringing in my edge light. I want that to be an edge light, so I want it to be brighter, so I'm gonna, my main light right now is six three, I'm gonna bring that in about F eight, brighter, and I'm gonna overexpose it. So we'll see what's going on there. Give me three. Yeah, needs to be a little bit brighter. Oh, this stand's not tall enough for you. It's alright, we'll live with it, we will. Alright, Godfrey, throw 'em up here, just for a second. Right on. Yeah, perfect. Maybe left comes a little bit lower. Right on, that's what we want. I'm the southpaw. Oh, you're the southpaw? (laughing) So this is adding the edge light, so we got that edge light coming in. Let's just see 'em side by side, how that's working. Working, working. Right, now we're gonna start to do this long exposure. Let's kill that model. And we might need to really dim down the house lights for this part. Using these LED one by one LEDs, this one has a pretty deep red gel on it. I have no idea where the power button is. There it is. Alright. One thing that's really handy about these lights is they have, are you with me there? They have these dials to turn them up and down. Why this one's not coming on. You with me Chris, here? It's sort of a puzzle, I think. Yeah, you got yours up? Did you have to come up a bunch? I clicked the top part. Is your number in the 300s right now? Oh there we go. We're coming up? Yeah, on the full. Coming up, okay cool. Let's kill that one first, and just do one at a time. You got it. And can we turn this stuff down? 'Cause it's gonna totally mess me up. Yeah. Is there more we can turn down from the studio? Just like a lower light situation here is gonna be really helpful. Alright. Yeah, is there more we can turn down? Yeah, okay, cool. I know it's gonna put us a little bit in the dark, but let me turn this one all the way up too. Is that cranked all the way? 255. Yeah, that's the max. We're not using that one right now? Uh huh. Okay, great. Just yours right now, Clay. Terrific. You want a dirt bag on that? Um, I feel alright about it. Okay. Okay, can I see your meter? I think I'm gonna throw the shirt off again. Right on, just 'cause I'm feeling that all day, I am, right on. Just to keep it consistent. Yeah. Continuity sake. You wanna read that by itself? Yeah, so I'm gonna take, we're gonna have to use different part of the meter, and the continuous part of the meter. You know the part that reads continuous light? The sun's setting, we're gonna read this red light. Still at ISO 100? Yeah, ISO 100. It's not so happy with that. We're gonna slow down the shutter a bunch, probably gonna have to go to 1/4 second, 1/2 second, somewhere in there. For 1/4 second, that's two eight nine, so about F four. Let me see that. But our camera is set to six three right now. Can you set the, we're gonna go to one second, see how one second looks. So actually I'm just gonna look at this light all by itself at one second. You set it to one second? About to happen. You're at one second. Could you give me a little, some punches there, some movement there? Like, really what I would like is this sort of movement. Pretend you're me for one second, stand over there, pretend you're Cleazy McBreazy. I'll pretend I'm a cage-fighter. So I'd like this sort of movement here, and I'd like you to think about this movement needs to happen in a second. So it's gonna be like, needs to happen a little bit in slow motion. So I'll say move, and you'll do something like that. I know it might seem tempting to wanna do this, we might experiment with that too, but right now we're gonna keep it on the slow tit, see how that looks. Alright. So we're just gonna look at the red light by itself on a long exposure, a one second exposure. We're set to one second? Yeah, and you turned off your PocketWizard? Yeah. Good. Go. Alright, I think, yeah, let's see it again. I'm getting a lot of contamination from the room. Right on, yeah. One, two, three, go. Yeah, is that one second I'm at right now? That's one second. Okay, go even a little bit slower with it. How 'bout two? Oh, okay, I see what you're saying. Go, move, go, give me that movement. I'm gonna give you a one, two, three, and then you're gonna start to move it. And maybe a little bit quicker. One, two, three, go. Yeah, alright cool. Can I see you start with your body turned towards that red light? So pivot, just pretend you're me again and I'll show you what I'm looking for. Just stand over here. So start over here, and come around over here. Right on. Alright, so turn away and into that red light, yeah. And I'll give you a one, two, three, and you're just gonna throw that slow motion punch. Alright, focus glide, focus off. So I'm just hitting my autofocus on, and then turning it off, 'cause it's gonna search for focus. Hitting it, go ahead. Alright, I'll give you a one, two, three, make it go a little bit quicker. One, two, three, go. You see how that's looking? Just step over a little bit. Gonna even go a little bit slower with it. Go. Oh wait, I went quicker, I went quicker. That was faster. Alright, sorry. Alright, go. Alright, this is That's closer to what we want. starting to look good. Alright, cool, we're getting a lot of spill but we can see if we can make it work. So I'm still at six three, I'm still at where my main light was set to. I'm just kind of balancing my red light and my continuous light with it. So I think I want you to move a little bit quicker. Let's just get you to bop back and forth there a little bit and throw a punch. Yeah, let's just try that. Why isn't my camera shooting right now, Chris? Okay, this is two seconds now. Now slow it down. Yeah, just keep going with it. Slow it down a little bit. Yeah. Alright, starting to look cool, I'm feeling it. Alright, whatever that pace is, it's working for me. How's it looking on the monitor, Chris? I like it. Alright, cool, I just threw my PocketWizard there. Ah, you didn't need it. You guys see here, it's coming in right. Alright, so now I'm gonna start to bring my strobe. You got it, let's just turn on the overheads quick. Can we bring in the spritz and spritz him down? Giving him some glistening water. Looks like it's spilling a little bit back here too, so I'm gonna hit it with this barn door. Good call. Right on. Bring this down. (crew laughing) Is this gonna be a close up? (people speaking faintly) Is this like the closeup camera? Clay, do you know much about the LEDs? 'Cause this is the first time we've seen these on show. Is it the first time you've seen them? Okay, these are kind of like the lights of the future, because they're like hot lights that don't get hot. They don't use a lot of energy. A lot of hot lights get really hot to touch, these are not gonna get hot to touch. Many of them have the ability to dial in the color temperatures so they can be very cool, or very warm. You can actually change the color temperature in them. What else can I say about 'em? They're kind of small, lightweight, they're easy to work with. You're gonna say something about 'em? The LEDs in the earlier shot where we were using a continuous hot light. Oh, the Fresnel? Yeah. Yeah, I think these are broader, and a little bit softer, right? They're not, I mean if you just look at 'em, you can kind of see that it's a bigger, more spread out source, it's not as focused and hard, and I kinda wanna light a whole big area. Yeah, uh huh, great. Alright, we might even hit him with some more, right? I might, yeah, might just get it all going, yeah. I like a little glistening sweat, right on. So I just wanna show this camera, and I'm going to change my sync to be the second curtain, if you guys can see that right there. It's built into this Profoto, which is nice. The second sync is built into my PocketWizard here, to the Profoto PocketWizard, which is a nice feature they have. I'm sure many of you are higher end, when speed lights have the rear sync built right into them, I think the Nikons have it built into them too. So what does this mean? This means I'm gonna get motion and my flash is gonna go off at the end of it, which is really what I want, because I want the motion to be happening, and I want it to be coming in there. So we'll just check this. Everything's on now? Yeah. Yeah. Okay, let's kill all lights possible. Right on. Great. Alright, just that crazy dance you were doing before Godfrey, was beautiful. Can you get that LED and just shine it into my shot? It's on my table over there. No, on my table. You got it. Yeah, and I don't know about you, but like, worth having a little LED in your kit just to focus sometimes. You know, like I use one all the time. I work in a lot of dark clubs and dirty little basements and stuff, and having a little, just hold still one sec Godfrey, let me get my focus. So I'm gonna focus with my autofocus on, and then turn it off so that I'm not searching for focus in the dark. Can you give it to me once more? I don't know why. Alright, cool. Don't even move, just hold it still right there. Let's just see. Yeah, okay. Let's see what happens. Wow, alright. Wow. So that's with him not even moving. Looks pretty cool, gets a little bit of flair there, the background's a little bit light. And I think the unfortunate thing here is the room has a lot of spill light in here just coming from the top and whatnot, so in a completely black room would be the ideal setting for this, but we're gonna just roll with it and work it. Let's darken the exposure a little bit, Chris. Just bring me down like 1/3 of a stop. Yeah, sure. How you guys feeling about the flair in that corner up there? You guys like it, hate it? Not a fan. Not a fan? They don't like it. No. It only feels natural. Yeah, so we'll investigate it with and without, but you who said you don't like it are gonna have to become a human flag, right? So it's a punishment. So just be on standby over here for me. And you can really see this right now, you see where that shadow is on my camera? Remember I was talking about that before? That's kind of what you're gonna wanna do, right? When I ask you to. It's Peter, right? Alex. Alex, damn it. Call me Clyde. Alright, let's see that dance, hit me with that dance, yeah, yeah, just even maybe a little bit slower. Yeah. We might have to even, let's hit it wicked slow. Ready, and go. Yeah. Let me just see one punch going straight over there in total slow motion. Like, yeah. I'll mime it out for you. Let me just see, it's like, I'll give you one, two, three, and you're just gonna go whoa. I think like a 1/15 second would be actually ideal here, don't you? 15? 1/15 of a second 15th, ah. Yeah, okay, let's see it Godfrey. Yeah, go. Yeah, perfect. Alright, let's see what's going on. Let me just see it on the screen and how it's working. Alright, maybe we bring in, I think we need a little bit of intention in your face. We need to feel like you're really throwing a punch. We need to feel it in your face. Alright, so you gotta emote and act for me a little bit. We'll hit it like that, and um, and how is that motion? I think the shutter speed's a little bit long, so can we get the overheads on for a second? Can we, is that a problem? Yeah, okay. Let me just think about. You wanna investigate maybe a second? This is what we're at? 2 1/2. 2 1/2 right now? Mm hmm. Alright. Yeah, let's try a second, but I don't think it's gonna register at a second. I don't think it's gonna be bright enough. It's like we gotta bring the strobes down. So do you remember what this one was at? No, but you should be able to control it from the air pack. Okay, gonna come down two stops on this. Can you come down two stops on that guy? Yeah. Alright, so the problem I'm having right now is that one second is just too slow of a shutter speed. I need something probably around 1/30 or 1/ or 1/8 of a second. Just something, one's just getting a little bit too slow of a movement, it's feeling really forced for me. I came down on that, I came down on that, what's up with this one? That one I'm gonna have to bring down, 'cause we don't know what channel it is. I changed that one. This one? I changed that one. Yeah, I know, and then I changed it again, that's what I'm saying. Okay, are you coming down? I am. Alright, one, two, cool, alright. What just happened there? Looks amazing. Yes, alright. So we're going to 1/2 second as opposed to a second. Brought everything down two stops. I'm gonna kill these overheads. Actually, let's just see what's going on right here. Don't move for me. Yeah. Yes, alright. I really like what the light's doing, what the sweat's doing on his body. Okay, let's kill all the overheads please, again. Right on. Same sort of movement, and I really want you to twist from the trunk, or sort of from the core, and these sort of punches coming over. And just slow it down a little bit. Keep a lot of intention in your face if you wouldn't mind man. Alright, let me just see how my exposure is. Boom, alright. It's a little bit hot Chris, could you, I'll stop it down from the camera from over here. Thanks, I'm gonna stop out your air remote. Alright, stop out my air remote. Come down one stop. Gonna, let's walk that, this guy around a little bit more. It's just a test. Okay cool. Do you still need the body if it's not gonna be your camera. Pardon me? Do you still need the body? I don't think I need the flag right now. Alright, let me just see little punches out straight in front of ya. Right, looking straight at me. Cool. Wait, let's just see that. Even a little bit slower. Alright, let me just flip through them and see what's going on. Sure, so this is where we are now. We got too much light on the background for sure. Can we come down on the background? Stop and 1/2? Yeah, maybe even come off on the background. Back it up? Yeah. Bring it down to the bottom, bottom it out. Yeah, cool, let's try that. Perfect. Let me pretend I'm you for a second, and see if I can work this out. You pretend you're me over there. Maybe you just watch the monitor with Chris. And I just kinda wanna work at the blocking of it. Want me to do a test? Yeah, let me think. We're at 1/2 second right now, correct? Uh huh. Okay, right on. Okay, go ahead. Give me one, two, three, go. Yes. There we go. This is kind of more what we want. I think that motion was happening too central in one spot, and we kinda want it coming left to right in the picture. Does that exposure look a little bit hot Chris? No I don't think so, I think you just have white hair. Yeah, okay. (crew laughing) Come back a little bit. Right on, maybe just drag the shutter a little bit more. Alright, so we're at 1/2 second. Let's go to 0.8. Okay, let's check that. Okay, so what I'm doing Godfrey is I'm just taking a step, one step in. So one, two, three. Think that's kind of what we want. Right, see if we can get it happening a little bit more across the frame. One, two, three. I didn't get the punch. So you gotta speed up a bit. Yeah, okay, one, two, three. Yeah, that felt good. Starting to work there, right? Yeah. Yeah, and the color contrast, and the sort of motion that we're getting here is ridiculous, right, on the screen of our camera. We just gotta get Godfrey in there, and we gotta get him feeling it, right? So you gotta like, just walk through the frame, so you're coming through right on this line. See we have a line right here? So I can keep my focus. An I might even see what happens if we get crazy and add this one. Wow. I'm gonna dial it down a bunch. Let me know if you need help, 'cause that one can be finicky. Yeah, please finick. You got it. Please finick, right on. You wanna dial it down? That's max. Yes, totally dial it down. Just gonna subtract some there. Alright, do you think you got that movement coming across the frame now, Godfrey? Yeah. You gotta step, like step and walk through. But just step through with your legs, so you actually walk through. Yes, that's what we want. Right on. So I think um, if we brought out one foot kind of into the mark, and then we just walked it through, right? One, two, three. Yeah, it's feeling good. Just step into the frame a little bit. Yes, start right over here. Step in a little bit. Yeah, great. One, two, three, go. Yes, this is feeling good. Maybe a little bit slower for me Godfrey, so I get a little bit more trails. And I don't think I like that yellow light coming in from the side, I think it's hurting me. Right on. Yeah. And ideally when we're running with this, the length is gonna be the same each time, and when the punch is finished, that's when we're hoping the strobe will go off. Okay. Yeah, that's pretty good. (crew laughing) Wait, wait, we might have something here. Yeah we do. I think we got something here. Okay, ready? Square off to him. Step in a little bit Chris. Yeah, Godfrey, throw 'em up. Throw 'em up. Right up here, man, right up here. Just throw slow motion punches at each other. Wait. Wait, go, okay. Wait, I got. This could be good. Even slower. Give me one, right here, right here. Even slower. Wait. Oh my god. Come back, it again, even slower. That's so good. No, but we gotta go back to one. This is iconic. Ah huh, yeah. Oh man, put that on your website. Yeah, you said I needed a new about picture, right Clay? You do, you do. Let's just hit it together for a couple, 'cause it's kind of funny and working for us all, right? Okay, go, hit it. Go, go. Oh wait, I'll give you one, two, three, go. Ah huh, that's great. Even slower motion. Even a little bit slower motion. One, two, three, go. Yes, Chris, killing it Chris, yes. On one, little bit faster. Ready? And you can actually connect right here. Okay, just not like pop? Okay, you ready? Just move a little bit slower. You too, Chris. Your mother might be watching this. Lovely.

Class Description

Color has a way of making the ordinary extraordinary. In this course, Clay Patrick McBride will explore the power of gels. He’ll show how to light and create dynamic images by balancing and accentuating color.


Vitamin Dee

Great class if you're wanting to learn how to work with gels! This class will take you through the process step by step as you build your shooting playbook. I enjoyed Clay's honest and simple approach. Clay and his assistant, Chris, make a great team as they show how gels work and show you what not to do. They make learning fun!


Enjoying every minute of this class.

Doug Richardson

I found Clay's classes and teaching style worked very well for me. For example, Clay's method of first testing one light in a multiple light set-up and the adding the other lights one-by-one was great. I recommend this class for anyone working to add different lighting styles to their work.