Many new filmmakers spend a lot of time honing different crafts, such as screenwriting, camera operation, and editing. While those skills are important to develop, light and shadows are a large part of the foundation of filmmaking, and learning how to control light is one of the most important skills for filmmakers to learn. Check out Let There Be Light, a short documentary/tutorial (docutorial?) by Mark Vargo, a second unit DP who guides us quickly through the history of artificial lighting, the Inverse Square Law, different light fixtures, and how they are used in filmmaking.
Vargo has spent over 20 years in the camera and electrical department on such films as 3:10 to Yuma, Rise of the Planet of the Apes, Ted, and White House Down. In Let There Be Light, he explains how light evolved from gas-lit street lamps to the powerful bulbs we use in filmmaking today.
The most helpful aspect Vargo talks about is how the different fixtures affect the way light is emitted, as well as the different effects they produce. He mentions that sealed beam lights are good for illuminating large areas and creating fire effects when used with a dimmer.
Check out Vargo's docutorial below:
What do you think? Did you find Let There Be Light helpful? What lighting tips would you share with beginning filmmakers?
[via Filmmaker IQ]