Back in September 2019, which is a billion years ago in internet time, we let you know about a contest put together by Aputure with an interesting angle: Lighting diagrams. The "Light This Location" contest is about not just creating cool stuff, it's also about documenting how you make that cool stuff, specifically with a diagram of how you lit it.

This makes it a contest that is not just cool for you (if you win, you could potentially take home a full 8K RED package or hundreds of thousands of dollars of other prizes), but also good for the filmmaking community as a whole.

Whenever we see something executed in a way that makes us go "how did they do that?", it can be discouraging to not know how they pulled it off. This contest should help us all get more in the habit of making, and sharing, lighting diagrams. It lets others know what we did. It gives us a useful reference if we want to recreate it later, for pickup shots or for another job.

And it shares knowledge, which is always a good thing. So we're psyched that Aputure is trying to reward this behavior with prizes.


The biggest news since the original announcement is the addition of Jarred Land, the head of RED, to the panel of judges. With the news of RED founder Jim Jannard retiring, that leaves Land in charge of the whole enchilada, though Mr. Land has been a huge part of RED for a long time (and built DVXuser before that). Having your work in front of him, along with Jeromy Young of Atomos, Ted Sim, Valentina Vee, and Jon MIller, should be exciting for any filmmaker.


Aputure have released that each of the six regions has less than 400 entrants so far, and you only compete with folks from your region. So, you have a better chance of winning this prize than you do have winning the Powerball, which comes in at one in 292,000,000. 

It also appears to be free to enter. Considering the insane fees of some contests (remember Thunder Funder and their $300 fee?), that's a steal.

According to Light This Location's website, film entries will be judged based on this criteria:

  1. 40%: Originality and Creativity
  2. 20%: Quality of the Cinematography
  3. 15%: Quality of the BTS Video
  4. 15%: Quality of the Floor Plan
  5. 10%: Use of Product


  • Your film must take place in one singular location. (Points will be awarded to those that are able to stay within the same room or geographical point.)
  • Your entry film must be under 5 minutes.
  • Each submission must include a lighting floor plan setup, detailing what gear you used and how you lit your film.
  • Your film must be submitted to one of six geographical regions. If you do not see your location, submit to the single closest region to where you are. (i.e. Films from Australia should be submitted to Asia-Pacific.)
  • Each film must audibly incorporate the word “accent” into their finished film. 
  • Submissions must include a behind-the-scenes video explaining how you lit and shot your film. (Points are awarded if you use and mention gear from any of the Light this Location brands.)
  • Filmmakers under the age of 18 submitting must be represented by a legal adult guardian for the submission process.
  • Your film may not include credits.

The deadline is November 11, 2019. That is one week from today. Check out the Light This Location site for more.