You have fantastic content, a fancy new camera, and crispy clean audio. What more do you need on your path to YouTube stardom? Lighting. If you keep fading in and out of the video or no one can even see you clearly, your video and it’s other amazing elements can quickly mean nothing.
Read below to find some affordable ways to make sure your lighting matches the quality of the rest of your video!
1. Natural Lighting
One of the trickiest but nicest ways to light your videos is to use a natural light source. The best time to do this is in the beginning of the afternoon, preferably on a sunny day. What makes natural light tricky is if the sun fades in and out during your filming, it will cause unequal (sometimes obvious) light distribution. This usually happens due to clouds in the sky or when it starts to get later in the day and the sun begins to change position.
It is best to avoid times like in the late afternoon. Instead, aim for filming between 10 a.m. through noon to capture the sun at its highest and brightest! When done right and on a good day, the lighting in your videos will look professionally done, and you get it for free!
2. Three Point Lighting
Understanding the basics of three point lighting will make it easier for you to use even the three desk lamps lying around your house cost effectively! To do so, you need three ‘types’ of light: hard light, fill light, and backlight.
Essentially, you want all three pointed in each direction: one in front of you (hard), one filling the areas the others don’t (fill), and another that hits you from the back (backlight). The video linked below clearly lays out how to properly set up all three angles with something as simple as a house lamp!
When using any light, but primarily desk lamps, the light can seem harsh and too yellow on camera. A way to counteract that and soften the effect is by using diffusers. You can find cheap ones on Amazon, but also can do one yourself with household products! A great, inexpensive way to create a diffuser is by putting a transparent shower curtain over your light.
Diffusers are important for making your unnatural light look, well, natural! If done correctly, the diffuser will lessen the appearance of textures and sharpness in your video. Linked below is another effective (but more complicated) way to diffuse your light sources!
Lighting your videos correctly will improve the overall quality but it doesn’t need to be expensive or time consuming to do so. These three tips are a quick and affordable way to make sure your videos appear more high quality and welcoming!
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Barbara Kandek enjoys writing stories and listening to music. She also loves traveling the world and taking pictures of her adventures. You can find her on Instagram @b.vd.k