Diabetes UK needed a sequence of a sleepless child to introduce their animation explaining type 1 diabetes to a young audience. The sequence involved three lighting situations, ‘the big light on’, ‘dark’ and ‘reading light’, not to mention an ambient light that would be the ‘glow’ of the floated animated character that would be added in post.
Felix Clay was the DOP for the project and called Sam in for light and grip services.
In preproduction Sam suggested doing as much of the ‘glow’ from the animated character in camera rather than post. The ‘glow’ would be more realistic and cheaper to produce. Particularly the catchlights in the child’s eyes as she watches the mystical apparition.
The night shoot was scheduled to happen in working hours, so the first mission was to black out any daylight and then create the lighting for ‘dark’. Sam chose a blue ‘moonlit’ theme for the dark lighting, created with dedo lights. The ‘big light’ was a simple boost of the existing lighting and the ‘reading light’ was the practical fixture with a more powerful light hidden out of shot to create the ambience but keep the light level high enough to shoot at a clean low ISO.
The apparition’s glow and catchlight were created with a glass dome light fitted with a daylight corrected high power bulb.
Beyond the lighting Sam and Paul also set the rig for the over head shot and Sam boomed the girls lines – they had been planned for ADR but Sam could see no reason not to acquire good sound on set, another saving. Sam used his excellent Sound Devices 702 recorder to capture the audio.
Felix had chosen to operate his 5d3 camera. We took a clean HDMI feed from the camera and recorded to our Prores recorder, meaning no transcoding in post and the ability to easily watch back footage on set to check both performance and technicals.
- creative lighting direction
- lighting gear
- overhead grip
- transcode free image recording