“You Need a Montage”

In Notes From the Set by Rod SantianoLeave a Comment

Okay, so only those of you that know the song will know how to sing the title of this post. Among the many scenes we shot today, we shot a few segments for a montage that will be in the film.  I really liked what we got.  I think because there is no dialogue to worry about and I knew this would be a montage, the shots came out a little more stylized than others.  Here are a few shots plus a bonus video clip because I couldn’t find a good still frame that showed the shot well enough.



So I’ve been doing this thing… where we don’t black out the rooms completely for night scenes and actually use the daylight coming in as a source of light.  I shift the color temperature of the camera to 4400ºK so the tungsten lamps look warmer and the daylight looks cooler.  It makes so much sense to me; I don’t know why I hadn’t done much of it before.  It saves on black-out time and looks cool, too!  As long as the contrast ratios and light level ratios are correct, an interior night scene can totally pass for night during the day.

The above two shots are actually one dolly move—one from the beginning position and the other at the end.  The light you see on the headboard (and on the right side of the actor’s face and body) is the daylight from the window to the right (which had cool diffusion-type blinds).  We had two practical lamps on both sides of the bed with 75W household bulbs in them.  An open-faced 1K through a 4×4 diffusion frame (216) provided the key light on the actor to simulate the lamp on his right.  Two solids were used to control the light onto only his upper body.

I think it works out pretty well and with less time and less light, plus the daylight is given to us for free.  Sweet!  Anyway, it’s been pretty fun trying new things.  I’m guessing this technique is not at all new, but I’d never done it before—at least, not to this extent.

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