The Build.com media studio houses several sets—a kitchen and a bathroom—where we capture still and video content for our various channels, including on-site, e-mail and print. As a retailer of high-end home improvement products, we need to emphasize image quality and realism. These were important considerations when determining how to light our sets.
The Platinum Blonde HMIs from Photon Beard fit the bill. Their compact size, ability to run off of 15 amp circuits, and wide beam angle allows us to position them strategically behind our windows to give us a combination of hard and soft light spilling onto set. We took advantage of the massive light output and relatively large beam angle to bounce light off the backside of our set walls into white V-flats, which then return a softer diffused light through the windows, giving us the realism we were looking for.
The quality of light is superb. Minimal green/magenta casts and predictable color temperature makes correction in post an unusually rewarding experience.
Strategically positioned 8×8 silks provide most of the fill we need by returning the light from our Blonde-lit windows. This usually obviates the need for our four-bank lighting units, which run unnaturally cooler and more magenta.
We’ve been really happy with the results we’ve captured on camera. The Platinum Blonde fixtures make a great, high-quality alternative to big-brand HMI lights for an affordable price.
Cameron Farboud is director of media production at Build.com.