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Things to Remember for Quality Video Production Pt. 2: Lighting for Presentations

Let there be light!

The video portion of your video is arguably the most important aspect of your production. And lighting is probably the most important factor to consider. Ceiling hotel lights really won’t cut it if you plan to use a presentation for other than archival purposes. The hotel or we would need to light the stage if you want a more dynamic look for your video. In this post, we will cover how to avoid bad lighting for presentations.

Lighting for presentations

We’ve discussed the PowerPoint slide situation before, but it bears repeating. Lighting for presentations can be tricky. If you dim the lights for the PowerPoint, we won’t be able to see the speaker very well. So you either have to decide who or what you want to look better, the speaker or the PowerPoint. You can also light for the speaker and edit in the PowerPoint slides in later. Or you can use two cameras – one for the speaker and one for the PowerPoint. This will negate the need to edit in each slide, but a two-camera shoot requires more editing than a one camera shoot. But either way, you’ll need to edit either the PowerPoints or the second camera if you want your video to look professional.

If you decide to film the presenter with one camera and the PowerPoint with another, keep in mind that the color temperature for each shot will be different. If you record the speaker and the PowerPoint with the same settings with one camera, the following will occur:

– White balance for the speaker and the PowerPoint will look somewhat bluish.

– White balance for the PowerPoint and the speaker will look a bit reddish or orange.

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Lighting mistakes

We recently produced a video where we shot a combination of interviews and cut-away footage (also known as b-roll) to insert within the interviews. The client didn’t want us to light the b-roll footage, but the interviews were nicely lit. The result was that the b-roll didn’t have the same vibrancy as the interview footage. It still looked good, but there was only so much we could do under the circumstances.

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