One of the key conditions for getting amazing shots and telling the story is choosing the proper lighting. In Apurture’s latest video, fashion cinematographer Kazu Okuda and Ted Sim share their best tips on lighting for fashion shots. Although they focus on high fashion videos, most of these tips are also applicable to photography. So no matter if you shoot video or stills, these techniques will help you improve your work.
1. Frontal key light is the most important
Although many of us love dramatic side and back lighting – it usually doesn’t fit fashion videos. When shooting high fashion, your subject is already the most beautiful and the most important part of the shot. You’re trying to sell the product, which is why the subject should be well lit and clearly visible. So, Ted and Kazu suggest you leave the dramatic light for the cinema, and make the frontal key light the most important for the fashion videos.
2. Light for a centralized area
In fashion shoot, there are more spontaneous actions and the subjects will be moving around. This is why you should stop down the lens, so you can count for those movements. This will leave the room for your model to move around a bit, and you’ll still get sharp images.
3. Know the attitude of your shots
The lighting plays an important role in setting the mood and telling the story of your shots. For happier shoots, choose bright, softer light and higher key. If you want to get grungy shots, choose higher contrast and lower key.
4. Eye light/catch light
When you add contrast and lights to achieve certain looks, you start losing the catch light in the eyes. This is why Kazu carries a small LED light, which he attaches to the camera to add the catch lights. You can also add a small piece of paper right above the camera to get the same effect, or tape inside of your matte box with white so it reflects light to the eyes. All these hacks don’t affect the exposure significantly, but they just add some reflection and life to the model’s eyes.
I always find lighting tips videos interesting and useful, and this one had me add s few tricks to my list. What are your favorite lighting hacks for shooting fashion videos and stills?
[4 Fashion Lighting HACKS You Need To Know!| Apurture]