Here is a follow up to my last post. These commercials take place in an environment that is clearly a set. However at the end of the spot, through the power of VFX, the camera pulls back to reveal the set is not on a sound stage – it is in a real world environment. It was a delicate balance to get the light correct. Most importantly, the subjects had to look their best but we also had to keep an element of realism so it would look correct when we revealed the real world environment. Usually I would analyze the lighting in the image that the set will be composited into, but in this case they wanted a few options for environments in post so we dictated the lighting on set and they chose the environments based on that.
The key element here was an overhead 20x soft box made with truss, grid cloth, and 20 1K nook lights by the amazing G&E team led by Gaffer Yusuke Naito and key grip Sam Katz. When you are outside there is always soft top light. Even on a sunny day the light that isn’t coming directly from the sun is illuminating everything on the ground. We had the ability to turn each nook light on and off depending on where we were shooting in the set. For the big wide shot, all nooks were on, but for the close up we turned off the ones that were closest to the walls to give some separation between the talent and the wall. We also brought in additional lighting for the closeups as I mentioned in the previous post.
Big thanks to @doubledownlighting for the G&E gear and to @tcsfilm for the camera gear. Thanks to @zachmerck for being a great friend and super talented director. Of course massive thanks to the whole G&E team and awesome camera department. We were very lucky to have you all. I hope everyone is healthy and weathering this storm. I can’t wait to get back out there and shoot again soon!