Green Screens with KINO FLO
Quite often we are
asked to assist with green screen shoots on location and in studios.
This month we are highlighting some of the special techniques and
equipment we use to increase your familiarity with these approaches,
when you contact us for your next green screen shoot.
As you probably
know it is best to light the green screen as flatly and evenly as
possible with no color or tone variations. One thing that you
need to begin with is a material that is smooth and taught so that
there are no shadows. We recommend exposing the screen below the
subjects key lighting, but not more than a full stop under.
Conversely, the subject lighting does not need to be flat and can be
done in any manner befitting the final composite. This is the
most enjoyable part of green screen work, so bring along examples of
the final background if you have them and show them to your Gaffer.
In order to
minimize the green spill on the subject or unnatural shadows
falling on the screen It is important to keep the subject as far away
from the screen as possible. This also makes separating the
lighting schemes easier. A larger room is better since you're
going to be using more space with a larger screen.. One of our most
recent projects for Microsoft was in a large room, but it did not have
high ceilings. A 6'x6' or an 8'x8' green screen would have
worked, but we wanted the subject as far away from the screen as
possible to avoid green spill. Since a camera's aspect ratio is
wider than it is taller we can make sure that as we moved the camera
back we wouldn't loose the green screen on either side of the frame.
We decided to use our 12'x12'/6'x6' breakdown frame. We put the
frame together in a 12'x6' configuration and attached the 12'x12'
green screen to the frame folding the excess under and around the
frame and tying it off to the other side. We made sure to
stretch the green screen tight to remove all wrinkles. The
Result: A 12'x6' green screen wide enough to stretch across the room
but short enough to fit below the ceiling. This also
allowed us to place the subject further away from the green screen.
Also you can limit
the spill and bounce of the screen by setting some flags and cutters
behind the lights and as close to the green screen at the final edge
of frame between talent and green screen. One handy tool for this is
the 3x3 drop floppy made by American Grip Inc. the 3x3 is a
handier size than a normal 4x4 floppy for these locations and when
unfurled covers a whole 18 Square feet.
Instead of using
tungsten hot lights, we decided to use our Kino Flo's with Super Green
lamps. These fluorescent tubes are designed specifically for
lighting green screens. Below is an excerpt from Kino Flos' own
website highlighting the features of the lightweight cool and color
operating Super Green lamps are inherently superior in lighting
quality to any source when lighting painted cycs or green screens
* Super Green lamps emit a pure green light (560 nanometer spike).
There is almost no contamination of the adjacent colors.
* Kino Flo's put out 10 times as much light per watt as tungsten
* Kino Flo's are a lot cooler and have a softer, more even beam
* Kino Flo's can control light levels without a change in color