Do your videos look dark and pixelated? Not loving the end result because they don’t represent your true bright self?
Not to fear ! There are many different ways to create better lighting for your videos and I’m going to show you how!
Lighting in your videos is super important because it sets the tone and mood. There’s a reason why horror movies are shot in dark places! Lighting creates a feeling that you can’t recreate with just images alone. How you light yourself in your videos could completely change the way your audience perceives you.
Use natural daylight!
This might seem super obvious, but there truly is no better lighting than the stuff we get from the sun! You might want to consider shooting in a different room, or shooting at a different time of day to capture that glorious natural light.Make sure that you’re set up facing the light, and not with a window behind you. Because then you’re backlit, and then you might as well be shooting in your basement.
Get some bulbs!
Maybe daylight isn’t an option for you, so you need to create some lighting. Totally da-able! Professional lighting packages can be super expensive, but you can head on over to your local hardware store and pick up some DIY supplies.Grab three bright (like 125W) bulbs, three clamp lights, three AC cables (the kind with a plug on one end, and an empty light bulb socket on the other, and either some PVC piping with clamps, or 3 cheap camera tripods.
You’ll want to set up these lights using the well-known 3-point lighting system. One key light that lights your face from the front. One fill light, which is placed on the other side to cancel out any weird shadows on your face. And one back light to light the space behind you. Keep in mind that you’ll probably have to hit record and do a few light moves before you find the perfect set up. We are looking for beautiful natural lighting, not the Blair Witch Project!
Turn up your ISO!
Your ISO is essentially how sensitive your camera’s digital film is to light. Under normal daylight shooting conditions, I usually have my ISO at around 300, but if I’m shooting at night or in a dark place, I crank that ISO to 1600 or even 3200. Sometimes carrying around extra lights isn’t an option either, so using your camera’s ISO settings to compensate for the darkness is a really handy feature you should be using!
Fix it in post production!
Often when people don’t like the lighting in their videos, it’s not exactly the lighting that’s the problem, but it’s that the images don’t have a level of color saturation that looks pleasing.If you are using editing software, you can easily adjust the color saturation levels, and even the exposure levels to what you find pleasing. If you find that your videos are too bright, you can use the exposure settings in your editing program to calm down the light too.
I hope that this video has given you some ideas to fix the lighting in your videos. There are often lots of DIY solutions that don’t involve spending an arm and a leg for expensive studio lighting.
Led by intuition and driven by data, Emmy is a storyteller & strategist who helps visionary entrepreneurs reach more people and create a bigger positive impact, using the power of video.
During her two decade film career, she’s worked with brands like Paramount Pictures, MGM, Subaru, and Real Housewives and bring big-screen-worthy storytelling to small business. Her video strategies have landed her clients their first $24k weekend from a sold out course, to clients booking $800k in less than 2 weeks by focusing on engagement.
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