How Do You Use Lighting for an Audition Self-Tape?

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  • How Do You Use Lighting for an Audition Self-Tape?

    Which kind of lighting is best for self-tapes

    (By Tonya Tannenbaum)

    (Photo: Ivan Samkov | Pexels)

    No matter how good your performance is, if a casting director cannot see you, they will not cast you. Good lighting for your self-tape is an absolute must.

    Poor lighting is one of the most common complaints that casting directors mention when discussing self-tapes. Poor lighting makes it much more difficult for casting to evaluate your acting performance. What’s worse, they have to submit your poorly lit tape to their bosses: the people who have final say in who gets cast. In other words, to some extent, submitting your poorly lit tape to their bosses can reflect poorly on the casting director.

    There are all kinds of ways to light yourself for a self-tape. There is no one definitive way. Here are some options to consider:

    Natural Light/Daylight

    (Photo: Eyup Belen | Pexels)

    Benefits:

    *Using natural light is the most affordable option. Naturally! There is no equipment to buy. You just use the light that Mother Nature provides throughout the course of each day.

    Downsides:

    *You have no control over the weather. You cannot control whether it will be a bright, sunny day or a dark, gloomy day.

    *You don’t have control over when you do your self-tape. If you’d like to film your self-tape in the evening when you get home from work, for instance, lighting can be an issue.

    *You don’t always have control over the angle of the light, when using natural light. If you cannot control the angle of the light, you also cannot fully control the shadows that the light casts.

     

    Ring Lights/Lighting Kit/Self-taping kit

    (Photo: Ivan Samkov | Pexels)

    Benefits:

    *Ring light kits are a very affordable option.

    *Ring light kits trim the amount of time needed to set up your equipment, since the lighting, camera mount and tripod all come in one package.

    *Ring lights are light and portable, making it easy to travel with your kit, as well as to store it.

    Downsides:

    *If you’re not careful to dim the lights to the proper degree, ring lights can give the appearance of vanity lighting.

    *Ring lighting kits can be a hassle to assemble and disassemble, depending on the kind of kit you buy.

     

    Box Lights/Lamps/Lighting Equipment

    (Photo: Tyler Hendy | Pexels)

    Benefits:

    *Using several different lights positioned properly can give you the most professional lighting set up. Think about the last time you took family pictures in a photography studio. You’ll recall that they used multiple points of light focused at various angles.

    Downsides:

    *Using this lighting setup can be costly.

    *This type of lighting set up can take up lots of space. If you are an actor living in a tiny apartment, this may not be the right option for you.


    You Might Also Like:
    The 5 Most Important Technical Aspects of a Self-Tape


     

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