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Improving Lighting In Your Home Videos

Posted on July 14 2016

Turn Up The Light

The big difference between a visually successful video and one that falls flat comes down to the quality of light. Whether you are an amateur photographer building a home studio or an aspiring YouTube star, the right lighting can be key in your take off to stardom. The Pfeffers, a music rock band from northern California, have rejoined us to share some of their simple tricks on casting the right light to take you to your big break. 

Dramatize The Shot

The Pfeffers, using StudioPRO Premium Daylight 600 LED Panels, decided that they could modify their studio by adding or removing lights in order to achieve various effects. You will be surprised, not only at the versatility of the lights, but also at how they can dramatically increase the quality of your shot. 

For example, you can see in their latest music video below that choosing to not add a fill light gives them a more dramatic look to the shot, casting more shadows onto the duo. Meanwhile, their faces are illuminated along with the guitar by the LED Panels. 
 

 

First Lights, Then Sound

Once the lighting is set up you will want to ramp up your video content creation, production, editing and distribution. The good news is that the costs for producing your own video content are becoming much more affordable. So experiment and try new things with your lighting equipment. Like the Pfeffers, make improving your videos a continuous thing, always moving forward with better quality. 

Kevin Pfeffer shares his opinion saying, “I think what has really taken our YouTube videos
to the next level has been more planning on the production side." He continues, "There are so many things to consider even on a simple live studio performance, like capturing quality audio."

Pfeffer says that they had previously tried to use the microphones on their cameras to record their audio. However, camera microphones have a hard time producing a balanced sound when they are trying to pick up so many different frequencies at once.

"Now we mic each individual instrument and vocal input so that we can balance the levels better in post production," Pfeffer says. "We even started using a room mic for capturing the ambience and natural sound of the room acoustics. When it comes to treating the audio, there are so many more possibilities with multiple audio tracks going direct in."

However, Pfeffer admits that you do have to be careful not to do too much to the audio during the mixing stage. "Our goal is to capture a moment, not have something that sounds over produced and doctored," Pfeffer explains. "I usually only add some compression, reverb, and a vocal delay just like a live sound engineer would do at a concert.”

Finding Your Focal Point

The purpose of lighting is not only to make your subjects visible, but also to guide the focus of the audience. If you don’t light your subject well, there’s a chance you won’t get the audience’s focus where you want it. Of course, there’s no wrong way to light something because it always depends on what type of style you’re going for. This is why versatility is so important in lighting. 
Cori Pfeffer from The Pfeffers exclaims, “The video quality of our YouTube videos has improved so much with the use of professional grade lighting. The StudioPro LED light panels really help with low light sensitive cameras. Most emerging artists have a limited budget so investing in some quality lighting can take your video production a long way. Once we have that great picture quality, the options are limitless with color treatment and filters in editing software like Final Cut or Adobe Premier.”

Good lighting is critical to ensure great communication through the camera lens with your viewers. These tips should take you into the next level of your performance on screen. Just remember, bad lighting is like talking to people with your sunglasses on – it doesn’t create a good connection. Time to crank up the summer jam sesh! 

The Pfeffers Performing off and on together for the past several years, Cori and Kevin Pfeffer, in 2015 made the decision to team up and work exclusively as The Pfeffers.  
Since then, they have already shared the stage with bands known as The Goo Goo Dolls, Rise Against, and Boys Like Girls to name a few. Captivating their listeners with emotion and originality, it's no wonder ReverbNation currently ranks them #1 on the charts in their genre and region.  With a refreshing sound and a brand new record coming out soon, we have a feeling The Pfeffers are just getting warmed up!

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