The sun as a light source.
Pros: It’s cheap. Its always around in one way or another during the day. It makes really pretty pictures if used properly.
Cons: It’s hard to control. It’s only out during the day. It makes really ugly pictures if used improperly.
So how do you make the best use of the sun when you’re shooting your next video? I’d tell you myself, but I found some people that already said it better than I ever could. Here’s a quick rundown along with links to their full articles.
- “Place the subject between you and the sun. This creates a bright line that separates your subject from the background. The best time to do backlighting is when the sun is at a 45 degree angle in the sky.”
- If you don’t have time to wait for a cloud, “You’ll need some substitute for cloud cover. One solution is to create an artificial diffuser by creatively using a white bedsheet, or some other translucent white material, to soften the sun’s light.”
- “You can take advantage of other more natural diffusers of light, as well. You can make use of any large object that casts a shadow large enough to accommodate your shot. These objects can run the gamut from trees, to buildings, to rock formations. In situations such as these, however, you may find that you’re blocking too much sunlight. While you may be reducing excessive brightness, you may now have to deal with a shot that is simply too dark. Fortunately, it is possible to redirect some of the sun’s light toward your subject from different angles. This is accomplished with reflectors that bounce the sun’s light.”
Finally, a couple basics on photography that you could adapt to video from a handy wikiHow.
- “Instead of going out there at noon, try going during the ‘golden hour’. This is the hour right before the sun sets and rises.”
- “Change your perspective. Shoot straight down or straight up. This changes the angle of the bright sun that you are dealing with.”
I recommend checking out the full articles to get the most out of these tips before you head out into the great outdoors to film your next masterpiece. Maybe it’ll even be something you submit to one of our contests!