Cinematic Lighting For Interviews With A Single Budget Light

In today’s tutorial I’m going to let you in on an industry secret, a simple hack that will instantly make your interview, talking head or even B-Roll shots more cinematic.

As video shooting professionals, probably one of the most common shots you’ll be required to film is the interview shot. It’s a mainstay for pretty much every client job you will do and a quick look over to Netflix or even Broadcast TV and you will see it the world over. But how are the pro’s making their interview shots look so cinematic..  and yours still look… WELL so ordinary? Well that’s where this single hack comes in to help you out. 

Of course before I expose you to this tip, there are other elements to consider.. Things like lighting, frame composition, and set-design ALL ADD HUGELY to the production value of a shot.. BUT the biggest single thing which will transform your shot is this; 

Shooting on the Shadow Side. 

Spend any time looking at any high budget production, from documentaries to Hollywood – and you’ll see this trick being used every time a face is in shot.. The main camera angle is always filming from the shadow side of the face. It’s simply more aesthetically pleasing for the audience to do this.. To achieve it is simple, after you’ve followed the lighting tip from Part 1 of this series (links below), you will have created a beautifully textured single light shot, with this key light off axis by around 45 degrees. 

From here,  place your camera at a similar angle.. but on the far side of the face. – You can replicate this in all situations you find yourself in, even with more ‘run n gun’ or outdoor filming. Take a second to find the main light source – and place your main camera on the shadow side of the subject’s face it will instantly upgrade your shot. 

In truth this doesn’t just work with talking heads either, it works perfectly for action shots or b-roll. If you can shoot from the shadow side, DO IT , it will instantly add a cinematic quality to your shots and is an industry secret which should be one of your go to hacks from now on.

Product Links

🛒 Budget LED Softbox Light:
🎙 Cinematic Lighting Tips Part 1:

🎽 120FPS Newsletter:
🎥 Ingaf YouTube:
🎙 Camera News Podcast:

🎽 Our Kit Profile:
🛒 Ingaf Amazon Storefront:

Follow Us:
If you wish to join our Patreon, it goes a huge way to support our channel.
Affiliate Links Notice:
Some of these links are affiliate links, which means at no extra cost to you, we will make a small commission if you click them and make a purchase.

Related Posts