FILMMAKERS TIP

FILMMAKERS TIP: Doing a lot with a Little

You can make a great video with simple gear, with the little you have to work with you may make it look like you used a lot in terms of budget n resources.

Small budgets for filmmakers encourage creativity, coz it forces them out of a comfort zone forcing them to become more creative and look for ways to do things and thus create techniques that add value to their production picture. How you light a shot can either make it, beautiful happy, dark or scary or even mysterious. One should always light with well-thought intentions as it does really make a difference and help better explain your story.

In this article, I share a trick that one can use to create natural light streaks, horizontal light streaks that is, without using expensive anamorphic lenses. Anamorphic lenses have optics that capture light in a different way as compared to the ordinary lenses, they have an added glass or lens that enables them to capture images from a wider angle of view creating that anamorphic aspect ratio we see in cinemas. Some of the main benefits you get from using anamorphic lenses are that those lenses capture light and create interesting light artifacts that you would use a lighting effect to make your picture more interesting.

We often see some of the effects of these artifacts used in international music videos and other lm productions. Locally what many filmmakers do is emulate these artifacts in the post, using software but at times, it comes out too unnatural and ruins their picture.

If you want that natural light streaks effect that anamorphic lenses create without you breaking your bank here is what you need. It’s simple to find a rubber band, dental floss or a thin twin from a fishing line, this strand should be semi-transparent. You place that short piece of strand vertically across your lens, use the rubber band to hold it intact on the lens. What that does when directed to a light source is, the strand will capture that light and create horizontal streaks.

Now Make sure your positioning of the rubber band will not affect your focus dials. When that is all in place you are good to go. Find a light source either a lamp, a torch or headlights then point your camera to that source and see what happens. Do this at night, during the day time you will not see any difference, Good luck

**You will always find something interesting when you think creatively and experiment with lines, lights and shadows in the creation of music videos and other lm products, there is so much one can do, and by trying out new ideas all the time you develop some great and interesting techniques that can help make your work look outstanding.