Be Creative With Video Light
So we do employ a Video Light most often for portraits. That's where you'll see us use it.
There are exceptions.
Most of the time, yep. Right now the Video Light that we're using it's called the Stella Pro and the reason why we like it is because it's fully dimmable, so you can really adjust the intensity. You can add different diffusers to it which work really great and also goes underwater up to 100 ft I think, which we haven't tried yet. It doesn't look like something that would go underwater, but apparently it does.
It's also very powerful which is why we chose to use it to buy that one.
The cool thing about Video Light is that it allows you to see exactly what you are doing in comparison with off camera flash which does have its own benefits. We like Video Light because we are so visual and we like things to be simple and we want to see exactly what we're doing as we're doing it. So, in this case this is the scouting photo and it starts again with jus...
t curiosity. I've seen that the palm leaves are interesting and there is something to be done with it. We see that there's a staircase in the background, so we know that we can frame the bride and groom anywhere on those steps to create, by creating the right opening between the leaves and framing them in there. Second scouting photo is just underexposing those leaves, bringing out a lot more of the color, and realizing that we will need a light on them to keep this kind of exposure, these kinds of tones, while their posed in there as well. And then bring it all together, in the final photo. The way we like to use our Video Light, you know, backlight works super well, especially when there's still a bit of daylight in the foreground, because you can still see them and you can make them out, but it, creating that glow behind them really makes them stand out from the background.
So, we will occasionally use the Video Lighting in candid situations also, first dance is really easy. It's a continuous light, so you know you just sit it on there like a, on the couple, like a spotlight, as if, you know they had that set already. Some weddings do have spotlights on the bride and groom. And then it allows us to match the exposure to, in this case, the twilight in the sky and the candles in the foreground, so with all those things being roughly in the same exposure, of course, some work is imposed afterwards. It just allows us to, you know, get them, get them lit up properly. This is a lot of anticipations here, cause they're rotating around, you want the light to be hitting them properly. You want the right moment and you want to be framed up, obviously, in the right spot between the candles, so.
Here the lighting was inspired by the environment, so we had just finished portraits with the bride and groom. Basically, behind us where we're taking the photo from, there's this beautiful view of Antigua in Guatemala, so that's where we went and where we did a lot of their portraits and as we're walking back towards our taxi, there's other people just walking out of the viewpoint and their being lit up by these cab lights and we realize , "oh, we could silhouette them in a cloud of dust" with our own light instead of the cab lights. So, you know, we're just realizing that lighting them and having our Video Light would recreate the same effect. So, we just, you know, set up the scene, had them walk back and forth kicking up the dust to create this dust cloud. They literally walked in a five foot circle, just kicking the dust as much as possible, and letting the light create this, you know, beautiful halo behind them.
Dust and backlight are your friend. (laughs)
I love in India we saw that all the time. You know at the end of the day, people were shuffling in the streets and you could see the dust and the lights from the cars, it's just so visually interesting. And this is a photo that came out of us being finished with the portrait session which is very typical for us. We're like, okay and "we're done, let's head back, oh wait, one more." (laughs) Yeah, that happens a lot.
Now, we're really letting ourselves play around and create shadows and having that continuous video light really allows us to do that because we can see exactly what we're doing in real-time, so, you know, as Davina is taking this photo, she's guiding me and telling me "okay, I need you to move a little to the left, a little to the right", and there's we don't need to look around take a picture, look down, take a picture, look down, it's really in real-time.
Yeah, so all we did here is, this was just inspired by like, the fact that their bed had sheers just all around it, like a four-poster bed with a curtain. So, I just pulled the curtain and okay let's see, you know, what happens if I cast a shadow on here, can I see through and it's just one step at a time. I'm building on this, you know, inspiration which just started from the idea of having them behind the sheer. And as Daniel mentioned being able to see the shadow in real-time really helped me to be able to focus properly on them through the shadow.
Balancing it with ambient light, again, we're not going to try to do this in midday when you know, the light outside is too bright. Once the sun starts going down and you can still see the environment, but you need just that bit of pop to make them stand out from the background, the Video Light is really, really great.
And it looks kind of natural, like I mean, we know that that's not the sun, but it kind of, it matches the warmth of the light, so it almost feels like it could be, so I like that about the Video Light as well and using off camera lighting to me, I like it when it can feel kind of natural, like it could be something, that just happened to be there.
And then we do use it for candid moments as well sometimes, here it's during a speech, we really want to preserve the mood and the feel of the venue, we don't want to do anything that is going to take away from that, so we had our friend who is shooting with us, he's standing on the other side of the table and holding the light on the speaker. The exposure matches the ambient lighting background and we just, you know, juxtaposed those two in the same frame.
This could be done also obviously with off camera flash, it's not specific to Video Light. But what I kind of like about Video Light in situations like this, people ask us "oh, isn't it distracting or isn't it really harsh for the people"? I think it's almost less distracting than a flash that's going on and off, cause at least it's continuous, and everybody who's watching or listening to the speech, they have a continuous light on the speaker, they can see them well. I mean if it was like maybe crazy, crazy bright it might be a little much, but its no different than if they had set up a spotlight, so I kind of like that it can kind of seamlessly make its way into a reception.