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Need help regarding Diffusion material (2 replies and 5 comments)

Sairaj Batale
1 week ago
Sairaj Batale 1 week ago

Hello Roger and everyone, 
I need advice regarding diffusions and gels which I should get, I know one has to know the script and then decide which one to get. I'm just talking in general, which one should you must have mandatorily, considering you are on a very tight budget and can only spend very few on this.

I did read that Roger carries 216, 250, 251, Brush Silk, and Hampshire Frost but I need a finite and more precise answer on how one can squeeze more on this. Are the diffusion types mentioned by Roger must or they are more than enough?

dmullenasc
1 week ago
dmullenasc 1 week ago

There is no finite and precise answer possible. There are a lot of diffusion products out there so the best advice is to just use a few and get to know them.
Most people need a fairly heavy diffusion like 216 or Light Grid Cloth (the two are similar in diffusing strength but one is plastic and one is cloth.) They make even heavier diffusion (muslin, Full Grid Cloth, etc.) but one can always double-up a lighter one to make it heavier. 
After that, most people need a lighter diffusion like 250, 251, Opal, or Quarter Grid. Opal is the lightest in that group.
And now and then you need an extremely light diffusion like to slightly blur a hard light or blur the view out of a window, something like Half Hampshire Frost.
Muslin, bleached or unbleached, is a heavy diffusion but it has the advantage that it can also be used to bounce light off of.

Sairaj Batale
1 week ago

Okay. I guess I get what you are saying here. So David, what are your favorites? what you usually prefer or at least mandatorily carry diffusion where ever you are shooting? can you name some?

Sairaj Batale
1 week ago

Also regarding diffusion, I'll be going with DIY materials butter/tracing paper, silk cloth and etc. Do you think it should do my work?

dmullenasc
7 days ago

DIY materials are great as long as you take into account than many are not treated with fire retardants nor are heat-resistant, so don't put a hot light too close to them.

Sairaj Batale
4 days ago

Okay. So as long as I get my desired effect of diffusion, gel, etc from my DIY material, I just need to worry about the material so that it doesn't get heat up. Cool! Thanks a lot, David Sir.

Roger Deakins
1 week ago
Roger Deakins 1 week ago

Like many cinematographers I used DIY material before manufacturers realized there was a market for custom made products. There are plenty of products such as tracing paper, silver baking foil, gold thermal blankets and plastic tarps that are useful for film lighting. I once used a red plastic bag when I found myself short of a red gel. You just need to experiment.

Sairaj Batale
4 days ago

Okay. I'll get some materials and get them tested as per my requirement. Thanks a lot, Roger Sir!

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