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Studio Light Kits

primesuspectprimesuspect HumanGarbageDisposalDetroit, MI Icrontian
Photoflex is having a sale on their starter light kit. I want studio lighting bad. What do you guys use?

I currently use a desk lamp clamped to a barstool. It's ghetto-tastic and doesn't really work well.

Comments

  • BuddyJBuddyJ Dept. of Propaganda OKC Icrontian
    edited Jul 2009
    I use clip on work lights and full spectrum bulbs.
  • SnarkasmSnarkasm 's-Hertogenbosch, The Netherlands Icrontian
    edited Jul 2009
    The 580EX, usually bouncing off of things, and a 430EX that I have a softbox for. Usually does quite nicely, but more lights is never a bad thing.
  • CBCB Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ @TheButterflyman Icrontian
    edited Jul 2009
    Buddy J said:
    I use clip on work lights and full spectrum bulbs.
    This is all you need.

    If you don't also have an actual studio in which to shoot, then having a pro light kit isn't going to make that much difference. In fact, even then it's not all that much better than a simple hardware-store setup.

    I'm convinced that the only reason for all that expensive stuff is so that when customers see your studio, they don't say to themselves, "I could just go home and do this myself".
  • SnarkasmSnarkasm 's-Hertogenbosch, The Netherlands Icrontian
    edited Jul 2009
    Mmm... not exactly. It'll do in a pinch, but there's a reason the other options exist.
  • CBCB Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ @TheButterflyman Icrontian
    edited Jul 2009
    Snarkasm said:
    Mmm... not exactly. It'll do in a pinch, but there's a reason the other options exist.
    Yeah, to look more pro.

    There is also the possibility that I'm biased because I can't afford the expensive stuff.

    Side story: When I was working for NCTV, I used to carry around this huge elaborate, expensive lighting kit any time I would go out on a shoot. I would very carefully light every shot to get it just the way I wanted with exactly the right pieces for the job. Then, I would see the other, bigger local TV stations at the same location shooting with just a workshop project light...
  • SnarkasmSnarkasm 's-Hertogenbosch, The Netherlands Icrontian
    edited Jul 2009
    No, it's to create even, reproducible lighting that isn't hard or pointed and doesn't create shadows where they're not wanted or overexpose where unintended.

    Yes, you can usually make do with household objects - lamps, garage lights, a couple sheets, some scaffolding. For reproducibility, ease of use, and quality, the other products exist.
  • primesuspectprimesuspect HumanGarbageDisposal Detroit, MI Icrontian
    edited Jul 2009
    The Real Reason said:
    There is also the possibility that I'm biased because I can't afford the expensive stuff.
  • Nate_LapTNate_LapT Royal Oak MI.
    edited Jul 2009
  • shwaipshwaip bluffin' with my muffin Icrontian
    edited Jul 2009
    nate calls this: "how i harvest organs in my spare time"
  • RyderRyder Kalamazoo, Mi Icrontian
    edited Jul 2009
    Yea, see the freezer on the left? I bet we don't want to open that :crazy: :sawed:
  • Nate_LapTNate_LapT Royal Oak MI.
    edited Jul 2009
    thats not a mini freezer either, thats a commercial freezer :P
  • UPSLynxUPSLynx The Dean of Computer Graphics Redwood City, CA Icrontian
    edited Jul 2009
    I'm with CB (I bet you guys couldn't have guessed).

    Pro studio equipment is needlessly overpriced. Any industry equipment you buy, whether it's photography, film, television, will always be incredibly expensive. This is not typically because the product is worth such a price, but rather because the market is so niche.

    Buddy J's solution is more than enough, even for professional work. When you use the correct bulbs, there is no need for the overly expensive extras. With standard hardware store lights, you can attatch gels, you can mount a bracket for barn doors (which you can make yourself with a foil, even), you can add a lightbox, you can set a rig for bounce umbrella lighting, you can even mount a shade and slide in a cookie for patterned light.

    We've used lights similar to Buddy J's clip lights (though ours have adjustable stands and variable intensities) for shooting short films and doing commercial work. They work just as good as full, professional light kits that we sometimes borrow from the studio. Quality and reproducibility can be achieved just as much with a 'consumer level' rig.

    The only time you really need a hardcore pro lightkit is for times when you need very very intense light, such as a 2k, 5k, or anything else higher on that spectrum that can pretty much emulate the sun. At those levels, you're shooting for film, not still photography.

    A pro light kit won't create good lighting. The lighter does. Get a light meter and meter points on your scene. Even with the most simple lighting setup, you can create beautiful lighting as long as you learn the trade of studio lighting and watch your levels.
  • Nate_LapTNate_LapT Royal Oak MI.
    edited Jul 2009
    I've been told florescent lighting is the easiest for lighting an entire shot. hence why I have 2 2bulb overheads to help flood my set, I also use a shower curtain to diffuse a 500w shop light along with the multiple 40w over head ge natural lights with pie tin barn doors.
  • KwitkoKwitko Sheriff of Banning (Retired) By the thing near the stuff Icrontian
    edited Jul 2009
    I made a light box out of a cardboard box and some easel paper. It's lit with halogen bulbs clamped to whatever I could get my hands on.
  • GotVGotV Blue Springs, MO
    (I know this is a necro, don't kill me, I have an actual question pertaining to lighting)

    If I wanted to create a dimmer switch for a light running 500w, does anyone have a safe suggestion for purchase or building your own?
  • shwaipshwaip bluffin' with my muffin Icrontian
    What kind of light? Different lights need different kinds of dimmers and/or don't even allow dimming.
  • GotVGotV Blue Springs, MO
    I don't even have the lights yet. I'm looking to do some filming and need some lights for the scenes, so my buddy told me to get some Par 64 lights, but they don't have dimmers on them.
    Pro studio equipment is needlessly overpriced. Any industry equipment you buy, whether it's photography, film, television, will always be incredibly expensive. This is not typically because the product is worth such a price, but rather because the market is so niche.
    I thought it would have worked, but you're right, some lights don't allow dimming, just on or off. For this example, let's assume a par 64.

    If anyone has a different suggestion, I'm open to it. I'm not a lighting person, I have no clue about this stuff.

  • GotVGotV Blue Springs, MO
    Sorry, posted the wrong quote:
    When you use the correct bulbs, there is no need for the overly expensive extras. With standard hardware store lights, you can attatch gels, you can mount a bracket for barn doors (which you can make yourself with a foil, even), you can add a lightbox, you can set a rig for bounce umbrella lighting, you can even mount a shade and slide in a cookie for patterned light.
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