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An infinite white background is more than hip and trendy. Clean, professional and flexible, the secret is in the lighting. And while framing the head and shoulders is easy, lighting a full-body shot is much more complex. This segment shows you how to Light Infinite White, on a finite budget and in a limited space.

* 2009 Silver Telly Award winner (highest honor)

videopia.org

Credits

Likes

  • Matt 3 years ago
    Nice show Eric, production values are much better on this one, I like the 3D stuff. So do you give tours of your studio;)
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  • Videopia 3 years ago
    Yes, free tours, chicken wings, beer and Donkey Kong (real arcade version)!

    p.s., I whupped yer butt at Donkey Kong at videopia.org, by the way.
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  • Matt 3 years ago
    Look again, I believe we are tied, but I'll be number one soon enough:)
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  • Jose Fernandez 3 years ago
    Nice DEF... Very nice!
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  • Love it DEF...great job!!
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  • Shaun Roemich 3 years ago
    I wonder if my partner will allow me to convert our living room into an infinite white studio? She's been good so far but...

    Great work, DEF. Would have expected higher "quality" (read: PRICED) lights for the visual quality you've got here.
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  • Daniel Rivera 3 years ago
    Wonderful, Eric! Keep up the good work!
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  • Tall _ Tales 3 years ago
    Big thanks to Daniel's link post on DJ Forums.

    DEF, it was a great piece of work. I'm out hunting for the materials already. Thanks again for some great information!
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  • You know, this is a really awesomely made, very helpful tutorial. Thank you so much for it!
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  • DJ Paine plus 3 years ago
    awesome
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  • Videopia 3 years ago
    Thanks all!
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  • Crosby! 3 years ago
    I like it! Nice work and I've sent the link to a bunch of friends that I keep telling that you don't need "pro" stuff to get nice results. Well done!
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  • Carson Kuehne 3 years ago
    Whoa! I think this is going to be perfect for a project I'm working on. Thank You.
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  • Dave Dugdale plus 3 years ago
    I think that is great that Eric is continuing on the tech know show in spirit on his site, so much so that i wrote a blog post about it with screen shoots of the differences between the DJTV and Videopia site.

    davecolorado.com/​index.php/​videopia/​
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  • toogeza.com 3 years ago
    that's cool!
    spent the whole evening watching your video
    thanx a lot!
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  • Beeker 3 years ago
    The "but ugly" floor lamp put me over... WAY LIKE... and I am getting myself a new 2 car garage so for sure green screens are going to be fun.
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  • AVCHD User 3 years ago
    Great video! Very informative, now I can think about transforming my garage into an infinite white studio. The sound is a bit hollow, it seems that you need to get yourself some foam panels. Otherwise looks every bit as professional as TechNow episodes.

    Would be nice if you told about keying out white and whether it is harder than keying green.
  • Videopia 3 years ago
    Great observations, thanks!

    Yes, the audio in this segment is really hollow because I was shooting with a shotgun in a small enclosed space. In the evolution of the "studio," I worked on lighting first and then audio (which gets better in later segments - more treatment of the space like you recomend and swithed to cheap lav). I'm STILL struggling with the audio.

    And yes again: white is easier to key on simply because white fringes and imperfect keys are much more forgiving than trying to deal with green halos. Yes, I can do a perfect key in this setup, but it's a lot of work in post (like it ALWAYS is in any situation) and I just don't have the time or talent to do that and still finish a segment every other week.
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  • Tim Warneka 3 years ago
    Great job! I've been researching, reading and pestering my photographer brother to learn more about lighting. Your video pretty much sums up what I've learned.

    Thanks!
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  • gsmith 3 years ago
    It was good to see this segment before viewing 'The Light Idea' and seeing that little, if any, production value was lost between this set up and the one at the studio. It's reassuring to know that you can get high quality results without busting the budget!
  • Videopia 3 years ago
    Yea, there are differences, of course, but I think it's in degree and detail, and not content. "TechKnow" episodes also involved about 3x more manhours overall - there's definitely a professional polish that's missing in my homemade videos. On the other hand, the 720p video here on Vimeo looks better and loads faster than the Ultra quality vids at Digital Juice, so there's that.
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  • Anthony plus 3 years ago
    another awesome videopia installment.

    Thankyou
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  • Videopia 3 years ago
    I had real issues even finding the color temp on CFLs. They are roughly labelled "soft white" (matches tungsten) and "daylight" (bluish compared with tungsten). Most were in the blue range (5400-6500K). I went with 3100K I think (let's say 2800-3200K), which was a close match to the tungsten/halogen shop light that I can mix those. The blue "daylight" CFLs will look VERY blue even if you just turn one on next to an incandescent. However, if you went all 6500K, you'd be fine (after white balancing, of course).

    It's funny - they all seems white to me before I started doing video. Now I'm obsessed with all the bulbs in a room matching (e.g., 6500K "moonlight" in the bedroom, 3100K living room). Oh well, video nerds need to obsess over something.
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  • Kevin Terrell 3 years ago
    awesome thanks you!
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  • very useful - thank's !
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  • llewellyn a. forde 3 years ago
    thanks, i'm doin it!!!
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  • Charlie Shread 3 years ago
    Aren't you a clever sausage.
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  • Stephane Lun-Sin 2 years ago
    great stuff, thanks!
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  • Michael Herzog 2 years ago
    Is there an alternative to the canvas dropcloth? I have a hard time finding it in german DIY stores. The stuff you put on the floor for paintworks (Malerabdeckvlies) here has a very dirty color mix of grey and violet.
  • Videopia 2 years ago
    I don't know - they should have a canvas dropcloth, I would think! I know I still have a canvas dropcloth that my first generation American great grandfather used, so it is a very common thing. I'm only using it for covering the floor so it doesn't get footprints. You can use anything instead, like a blanket, but the dropcloth was the cheapest, most durable thing I could find. I have carpeting over other parts of the floor (mostly for sound suppression).

    As far as the paint goes, I used cheap flat latex wall paint. It may have been smarter to use a garage floor paint, which may have resisted dirt and footprints better, but since I never walk on the floor unless I'm shooting (the dropcloth is always down), it's not a problem.
  • Michael Herzog 2 years ago
    After a little bit of more googling I also found Malervließ in white, I think that is the right kind of material. About 40€ for 50m².

    Another question - is the paneling really needed? Cloth should automatically make a round edge on the floor - or is this solution not stable enough without the paneling?

    I also plan to place the bottom part on carpet - my garage is really too small to act in it. I just have to figure out if I should try to apply the paint it in my bedroom. ;)
  • Videopia 2 years ago
    Oh, I see: yea, I'm not using the dropcloth at all during shooting.

    And, yes, cloth backdrops are definitely an option, especially if you don't have a dedicated (or semi-dedicated) space. Photography shops will have backdrop rolls that will work. 40€ for 50m² sounds like a good price - my local shop has high key white muslin (cotton) 10' x 16' rolls (~17m²) for US$60. (I've used paper rolls too, but they aren't much cheaper and are a lot less durable - not recommended.)
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  • Roby Davis 2 years ago
    Thanks for this one... I just got a new HD 24p camera so I can get that film look (j/k). I hope to construct this within the next few weeks.
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  • Glenn Perry 2 years ago
    Brilliant tutorial... I'm going to have a crack at this in our new studio this summer. Allready have some of the stuff lying around! Going to check out some more of your films now... thanks for the time and effort.
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  • Richard Gooderick plus 2 years ago
    I wish I'd seen this over a year ago when I was shooting this:
    vimeo.com/​780735
    It's exactly what I was trying to do but it didn't work out quite how I had hoped. Now I can see why.
    BTW mine was a low-budget shoot. I did find a studio with an 'infinity curve' but couldn't afford it.
    Looks like I could have done it the way I wanted after all if I had seen this film!
  • Videopia 2 years ago
    Nice. I don't think your video is "hurt" at all by not having an infinite enviro - the content is great and the narration moves in and out of the music in a very natural way. Content is king and your video is very well done.
  • Richard Gooderick plus 2 years ago
    Thank you :-)
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  • Allan Woody 2 years ago
    Great segment. Would this set up work for blue screen or be too much light? Do you plan on doing a blue screen segment in the future?
  • Videopia 2 years ago
    You won't need quite as much with green/blue screen because you don't need to blow it out, but maybe 80% as much, so not much difference.

    I may do a segment on green, but I need to make a little money before my next video and, quite frankly, I'm not a fan of green screen + virtual sets. Too distracting if you don't get it perfect and I rarely have time/money to get it perfect. White is much more forgiving (when lumakeying over a light background).
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  • Topeka Design plus 2 years ago
    Hmm, I take it you also want to be careful about not wearing white...?
  • Videopia 2 years ago
    Why yes, yes you do. And you gotta watch belt buckles and reflections on glasses and teeth and eyeballs, but, there are two tricks here: (1) the back is also blown out, so if you keep foreground whites properly exposed (but not overexposed), you can get away with a lot and (2) since this only works on white backgrounds, small bits of white on your subject are keyed through... to white! It's cheating, but it works.
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  • Donnie Tuttle plus 2 years ago
    awesome! thanks for the good stuff!
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  • Norman Willis plus 1 year ago
    Is there a good resource for a solid, durable cloth white screen? Does EEFX or anyone make one? Or would you just recommend drapery fabric? Thanks.
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  • Blindside Film plus 1 year ago
    Great work!

    However, I might suggest reducing the upcast of light from your floor - if you look at your fore arms here there is a large amount of white clip - perhaps reduce the wattage of your floor aimed clamp-lamps, or move them back ( if you have the space).

    Good Stuff!
    bsf
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  • This guy's look, voice, how he brings his hands together to form a triangle, and how his tippy toe tactic to emphasize points is insanely annoying. Otherwise, good insight into infinite white.
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  • Norman Willis plus 1 year ago
    I think it's the most interesting instructional video I've ever seen. I've just come to watch it again for fresh ideas before I go film my own.

    So there. Nyah :P
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  • QSP 1 year ago
    Awesome video!!! Two questions though: #1: Why use white instead of Chroma Key Green? Wouldn't it be easier to work with the green and #2: How can you accomplish the grey gradient at the bottom like they have in the mac commercials.
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  • Perfect-Day Images plus 11 months ago
    Nicely done
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  • Dave Dugdale plus 8 months ago
    Just watched this again Eric because I want to change my lighting in my basement studio. Really well done, can you make more of these someday when you have some time?
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  • Greg Vannoy plus 5 months ago
    i can't believe out of all the comments here, nobody noticed that this was very obviously shot over a green screen. WTF man? you produce an "infinite white" instructional video showing how to build and light a white cyc background yet your video is shot over chroma green?!!! that's a bit disingenuous, don't you think?

    am i the only one out of like 30 people who can see the fringing on that horrible key job? krikey, look at the green halo on his arms and shoes.
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  • Angel Navarro III 3 months ago
    Thanks you very much..Now, can you help me on what to tell my parents to let me use either the garage or basement?lol
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