Ring Light Shadows (1 reply and 1 comment)

1 month ago
Alex2II2 1 month ago

Hi Roger,

I hope you're well?

I just finished shooting a short on 35mm and lit one of the scenes with a ring light I built. 

I have 2 questions about my findings -

The first is the issue of multiple shadows making it difficult to get a boom in close on some set ups - how have you addressed this in your work?

The second is - I found it would create a rather soft top light on the actors, but the light would fall away further down their face, I was forever sliding in polyboards or anything to bounce light with - is this similar to your approach or might there be something I can do in future to lessen this effect without the use of bounced light?



Roger Deakins
4 weeks ago
Roger Deakins 4 weeks ago

The success of a ring light depends on the size of the unit, the space between the bulbs and the distance it is from the subject. When I use them I rarely use anything in addition to the unit itself. I sometimes back the ring with silver foil or make a skirt of the same material but that is basically it. However, I am also talking about ring lights with a diameter of 6' and more with bulbs that may be only a few inches apart. A 3' diameter ring holding 6 or 7 bulbs will always lead to a hard source with multiple shadows.

4 weeks ago

Thanks Roger.

Back to Lighting...