My picture is too dark or too light, how can I improve the lighting?
Proper lighting is essential for good video quality. Make sure you are in a well-lit environment or consider using additional lighting sources such as lamps or studio lights to improve the brightness of your video.
Improving lighting for video recording is not always an easy task, especially if you’re working with a budget or limited resources. However, there are several steps you can take to improve the lighting of your videos when recording on the video platform:
- Avoid a bright window or lighting source behind you. The webcam will adjust to the bright light, and you will appear darker or in silhouette (this is not ideal.)
- Use Natural Light: The first and simplest thing you can do is make the most of the natural light available to you. If possible, try to record your videos during the day when there is plenty of sunlight. Place your camera near a window or open door to make the most of this light source.
- Add Artificial Lights: If natural light is not sufficient, consider adding artificial light sources. These could be anything from desk lamps to more professional studio lighting kits. When setting up artificial lights, remember the three-point lighting system. This consists of a key light (main light), a fill light (softens the shadows caused by the key light), and a backlight (gives depth and a three-dimensional look).
- Use Reflectors: Reflectors can be used to bounce light onto areas that need it, thereby softening shadows and reducing contrast. Reflectors can be professional ones purchased from a photography store, or improvised ones like a piece of white card or aluminum foil.
- Adjust Your Camera Settings: If your camera allows it, adjust the exposure settings to increase the light input. Be careful not to overdo it though, as this can lead to overly bright and washed-out footage.
- Consider Color Temperature: Different light sources have different color temperatures, which can affect how your video looks. Most cameras have white balance settings to help correct these color shifts. Make sure you adjust this setting to match your light sources.
- Diffuse Your Light: If you’re finding that your light source is too harsh, consider diffusing it. This can be done with a diffuser (a semi-transparent material that spreads the light evenly), or by bouncing the light off a white surface.
- Placement of Light: Position your light source in the right place. You’ll usually want to place it in front of you, to the side, and above. This will help avoid casting shadows on your face.
- Test Before Recording: Finally, do a few test recordings to see how your lighting setup looks. This will give you a chance to make any necessary adjustments before you start your main recording.