If any of you are return visitors? and have taken one of my tips before then you should be already aware of the importance of lighting – AND creating depth AND visual interest in a shot. However the one thing those videos haven’t addressed is what to do if you don’t physically have the space at home to do that. This simple DIY upgrade will create the perfect artificial set and will give you the ability to place your products in pretty much any setting your imagination can dream up. And as we say at the Cinematic Organisation of Camera Know-How, dream big because size matters.
The basics you will need for this set up are: A TV or monitor and the camera gear and lighting that you usually shoot with. If you want to know my full equipment list for this video, you can get all the information on our blog or by following the links below.
So let’s walk through my setup. You can see I have my monitor placed behind a table that I usually use for our product shots. On the table I have some accessories that can level up this product video. There is a motorised slider, a manual curved slider and a motorised turntable. Any one of these will bring another level of interest to our end video. So If you’ve got any of these great! – use them. If you don’t, then don’t opt out; these are just added extras.
What we are hoping to achieve is to use our monitor to create a video background to our product and that by carefully playing with our lighting, framing and camera settings we will give the illusion of placing our product in any space we can dream up.
First up is our lighting and as always this is really important. First we don’t want to get any reflection on the tv or monitor. To overcome this I use an overhead light to gently illuminate the product, and depending what i’m shooting that may be enough on its own, as some products will reflect the light and pick up some colour from the video background.
The next key element to pull off this trick is to make sure your lighting conditions marry up to your background. If you have RGB lights try to replicate colours and gently light your product from the sides. If not you could try and use coloured gel over your LED lights. The important thing here is to experiment with your lighting until you get a look that helps sell the illusion you’re creating.
Other areas to consider include side lighting, if your product casts too much shadow from the overheads or isn’t popping enough from the scene, just be careful of avoiding that glare across your TV.
Once your lighting is set you are ready to start filming. If you’ve got access to any of those additional items I mentioned earlier, use them. The added layers of movement such as sliding and rotation add a real dynamic addition to the finished shot.
For playback on a TV I’m personally using a Google ChromeCast controlled via my phone, and for the monitor; I can shoot this on my desk set up or by connecting to my mac book. Of course you can use pretty much anything that your TV or monitor will display from, just be careful to ensure that you’re not using copyright material in your background videos as that is a surefire way of undoing all your hard work.
Finally, don’t be afraid to adjust the height of your TV or Table top to get the best position – Also consider your filming angle to fully create the illusion of your product being in this artificial environment. Some textured backgrounds work better with the product being dead centre and filming flat and level. Play with what works best for you and the shot you’re creating.
For those that do want burn some cash;
🛒 curved slider: https://geni.us/X0g7G3r
🛒 motorised slider: https://geni.us/iN7S
🛒 spinning product base thingy: https://geni.us/Sl3E0f
🛒 RGB Tube Light: https://geni.us/mRBE6
🛒 LED Strip Lighting: https://geni.us/nBAO4
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