It is probably no big wizardry to show up on scene with $20,000 worth of light and create a stunning lighting setup for an interview. Actually, even if you do own that much gear, you would still have to know what you’re doing, but this is another story.
It is more impressive to show up on scene with $26 worth of light and come up with a decent interview light. Of course, this is not something I would do if I had a paying client, but it is a great way to play and learn about interview lighting if you are a starving student.
This set up uses a 500W Halogen worklight for key.
Since it is a pretty hard light, they softened it with an IKEA metal mesh basket aluminum foil and drapes. It’s important that it’s metal and that it has holes since Halogen lights at 500 Watts can get pretty hot.
The fill is a dollar store hard board
And hair light is coming from a simple bulb on an extension cord with a Leviton adapter.
However frugality comes with its own price. It would probably take you more time to scout for materials, build the thing and of course set up / tear down and you should expect a decent amount of fiddling, yet, if you can’t afford pro video lights and want to experiment this is a great way to do so.
P.S. a while back we shared a different garage based interview lighting setup which may inspire some more ideas.