Solar Odyssey: Lighting and Mounts

At one level, we could almost do without traditional lighting, particularly if I outfit the cabin with sufficiently soft light sources (like these LED strips that could line the ceiling and high walls), but I’m not sure I’d be satisfied. My first job was as Head Technician and lighting designer at the Newcastle Civic Theater, but for the five years before that I’d already (from age 16) run my own theater lighting business. (A small business, I should point out.)

So, I’m a little fussy about the way things look. Hence, lighting. And logically LED, and therefore LitePanels. A mixture of Micro Pros, Mini Pros and a 1×1 for when I need a heavy fill or to light up a bigger area.

The cameras we’ll be using will produce good video in bad light. The NEX 7 in video mode sees the world much the way I see it. The FS100 is even more light sensitive. Great, we’re more likely to get something usable than not.  But I still want the option of control.

One of the Micro Pros (or perhaps a Mini Pro) will live on the FS100 as a soft fill, which is where the no-color-shift dimming allows us to dial in just enough fill without needing filters or diffusion.

But mounts. No room for a C-stand kit, nor really sufficient people to manage them. So for both camera and lights, I’m relying on a mixture of thePods black (thanks for the recommendation Loren); Gorillapods –  they can handle any of our cameras or any of our lights because everything is so light these days; and a pair each of Matthews grip and Gaffer Grip clamps.

Plus two lightweight tripods for the cameras. I’m comfortable for multi camera interviews, to set up two cameras with fixed shots, relying on the FS100 to provide the primary coverage, but with wide and close-up of subject as fixed shots.

The great thing is, other than the tripods, how little space those mounts take up. What will be interesting will be what becomes the go-to solution for cameras, and for lights.