This is article #30 in the DSLR Video Weekly series.  If you’d like the whole thing in one shot, check out the book Creating DSLR Video: From Snapshots to Great Shots.

Once you get the hang of video, be sure to monetize it by becoming a contributor to Adobe Stock.

If you have the benefit of a second set of hands, you might try bouncing the light in your scene by using a reflector—a common photography tool.  This highly reflective flexible disc can be folded into a small size and easily carried.  Keeping a small reflector in your camera bag can be the perfect solution for many lighting problems.  Simply bounce the light back onto your subject to help fill in shadows on a face.  In a pinch you can also use a piece of white poster board or foam core.

Using a simple reflector, the light is bounced back on the subject to help fill in facial details.

Why a Partly Cloudy Day Is a Good Thing

Although shooting on a nice sunny day can be a pleasant work experience, your camera probably feels differently.  Without clouds, the sun’s movement is much more visible.  The sun is also likely to produce hard shadows that can make your subjects look less attractive.

Without a cloud in the sky, the light is very harsh as are the shadows.

On the other hand, a slightly overcast day is pretty ideal.  The light tends to be very even because the cloud cover diffuses it. Video pros love to hear the term “partly cloudy” because it practically guarantees uniform lighting. Of course, if there are too many clouds, your beautiful light can go flat, resulting in a boring, shadowless scene.

Tracking the weather is important when choosing times to shoot. By using a weather tracking application on my smart phone, I can see what the cloud coverage will be, get rain warnings, and more.  Knowing the weather lets you make smart decisions about shooting.  The goal is to shoot in the best light without your gear getting unnecessarily soaked.

Join us each Saturday for the next installment of this weekly series.

Once you get the hang of video, be sure to monetize it by becoming a contributor to Adobe Stock.