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How To Video: Light your smartphone videos like a pro

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How To Video: Light your smartphone videos like a pro

3:08 /

In this episode of CNET Australia's Pocket Filmmaker, Jason Van Genderen shares some tips and tools to correctly light your smartphone movies.

-Hey, thanks for tuning in to Pocket Filmmaker. In this episode, we're looking at the locking tips for pocket cameras. Now, it's not gonna be rocket science when we talk about small cameras to understand that we're working with really small lenses. And small lenses may have very small lenses that are capturing the light coming into that lens. Now, well-lit shot will give us great color and great clarity in our video picture and, of course, natural daylight is the absolutely best source of light for us to film with. However, it's not always a valid choice. We might, occasionally, find ourselves filming inside or at night or under a shady tree outside. And each of those instances is gonna give us a different color temperature to our picture. Now, quick way around this when you're filming on a pocket camera, if you don't have a manual override control, this will actually show your camera something to watch in the environment you're standing in. So, whether it be outside, inside, if you have a back of t-shirt or a notepad, show that to your camera and it will automatically adjust the light to suite the color temperature of the light reflecting off the page. Now, without a shadow of a doubt, one of the biggest enemies of pocket lighting is backlight. And backlight is very evident where we film someone and, say, against a bright window or a doorway and they just appear like a silhouette in front of that bright shade. The reason is your pocket camera is simply exposing for the broadest light source of the picture. It is way doing it around that. Simply needing your camera or your subject away from that heavily backlit source will give you a much better picture or, sometimes, on a camera, you will find that its backlight compensation features which you can activate as well. On some of the newest smartphones, we even find we have a manual exposure override such as the Sony Experia TX. I can actually press this setting here and go up or down in my exposure settings which goes a long way towards compensating for backlight. Now, another great tip when filming outside is to avoid mixed lighting. And when I say mixed lighting, I mean, film your subject in all shade or all sun. As soon as you start crossing over the two, you get this default lighting which your camera will find very difficult to automatically expose for. If you're filming outdoors, a great tip for getting fantastic, even lighting is you use bounce light to fill in the light in the shadow side of your picture. Now, to get bounce lighting doesn't have to cost a fortune. In fact, you can use a simple white sheet of cardboard or a simple $20 reflector that are found on eBay or a must have accessory for pocket lighting is the LED light pack. You'll find it online on eBay. You can buy them really easily and really cheaply. They come in all different shapes and sizes from square packs right through this nifty little rider lights. Now, rider lights simply press this on the front here with a soft touch button. It's paired with 2 AA batteries and it gives you that beautiful, round, even, soft lighting on your face which is great for filming people in corporate shows or interviews. Before I go, check out this great little pocket film this week. It's called Self [unk] 2. Now, it's got a quarter smile in the dull. It's a little bit wrong and you're certainly gonna have a laugh when you see it. Check it out. So, I'm gonna see you next time. We're gonna be looking at unlikely pocket cameras. This is gonna be really interesting, why you really wanna tune in for. See you then.

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