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Daylight or Tungsten

Published : 6th Dec. 2006

I'm shooting an interview in a Federal penitentiary tomorrow- Trying to decide between tungsten or daylight fluorescents- I was told the prison has fluorescents (who knows what colour temp) so I'm thinking

I'll bring daylight balanced Pampa lights(I have a choice between daylight or tungsten)-I could always gel but won't have much time to set up-

Any quick suggestions much appreciated, leaving very soon-

John Babl
DP
Miami


Any reason why you can't bring both? Or find out what size tubes are in the house fluoros and swap em to the colour temp you want!

Jared Hoy
Gaffer || BBE
Los Angeles, CA


class="style15">>> Any reason why you can't bring both?

We're flying, small kit- I'm inclined to bring daylight and CTO just in case

Thanks

John Babl
Miami


John,

You could bring 4'4bank Kinos and steal tubes from parts of the prison that aren't in use and put them in your Kinos. Then your Kinos will match the colour of the tubes in the ceiling.

It's a prison, so I'm not sure how they'd feel about taking out bulbs, or if they have a box of spares, but you can put both T-8 and T-12 tubes into Kino harness. You might have to tape the skinnier tubes into the Kino fixture since they can fall out. You'll also likely need a ladder or apple box to get to the ceiling.

Otherwise, I recommend bringing Daylight tubes and some green and CTO. Ideally, you'd bring both tungsten and daylight.

Good luck, and be safe.

Graham Futerfas
Los Angeles DP
www.GFuterfas.com


John Babl wrote :

>> I'm shooting an interview in a Federal penitentiary tomorrow-
>> Any quick suggestions much appreciated, leaving very soon-


Bring valid ID.

They're usually cool white fluorescents.

Brian Heller
IA 600 DP


John Babl wrote :

class="style15">>> Trying to decide between tungsten or daylight fluorescents - I was told >>the prison has fluorescents (who knows what colour temp)

I have heard of people who mix the tubes in KinoFlos; i.e. alternate daylight and tungsten in the same fixture - just a thought.

Behzad Olia-Rosenkranz
European based Cameraman / Assistant
Luzern


John Babl wrote :

class="style15">>>Trying to decide between tungsten or daylight fluorescents - I was told >>the prison has fluorescents (who knows what colour temp)

I wouldn't worry about colour temp. Mix it up. After all, it's hell.

Edwin Myers, Atlanta dp


class="style15">>>Trying to decide between tungsten or daylight fluorescents - I was told >>the prison has fluorescents (who knows what colour temp)

When I have to travel ultralight and fast, and need to be ready for either 3000K or 5600K situations, I travel with fluorescents lamped with 4000K bulbs. To me the colour contrast with daylight is much less jarring. It is often easy to work this contrast into the photography or if a perfect match is desired you can use much lighter gels for less light loss.

Personally, I don't like to work at 5600 when normal fluorescents are present unless I have lots of time and a good complement of plus and minus greens to balance the lights. It is much too easy for the location fluorescents to go just a little warm and green - not my favourite look! Working at 4000K allows the location fluorescents to go slightly cyan which works out better for me.

I also like this colour balance when working in uncontrollable situations like a corridor of a shopping mall. You get the flavour of all the different colours of light from the shops and lights and daylight from skylights but none of these colours of light looks ghastly by itself.

Bruce Douglas, DP
Sao Paulo, Brazil


Depending on the subject matter, a 4,000 or 3200k fluorescent can match reasonably well with 5,600 overheads if you're talking interview setups and can do some slight correction in post.

This is just a personal preference, but it can be nice to separate the colour temps subject/background, plus keying at 5,600 with full CRI will just make the overheads look even uglier. Doing 4,000k key and counting on some post correction will give you nice stuff, and over-powering the overheads is in my experience more important than just colour temps.

If you can drop them a couple stops below a bright key you'll be in decent shape and can even fill in background with some 3,200k collared gels.

Jim Eagan
NY shooter/editor


Quick follow up -

I used the daylight Pampas, everything worked fine(they're easy to travel with, in the overhead compartment- I wouldn't send anything on the belly of the plane)

I shot outdoors( there was a visitor's area w/ outdoor patio) and had to move in when it started raining- but the windows let enough daylight to offset the available overhead lights anyway, which weren't fluorescent- you never know what you're gonna get in these situations - It was also a good reminder that jail is a bad scene-you don't want to end up in there-

Best,

John Babl
DP
Miami



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