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Cinematography & Filmmaking

Cinematic, Lighting, Tips and Tricks

Create a professional cinematic look with simple lighting tips & no film lights. Use practical and back lights to instantly improve your shots.

We can’t emphasize it enough when making video’s, lighting is one of the most important aspect of creating. Without good lighting your video will never look professional. It’s the lighting that creates layers and depth in your scenes. Without it, it would be flat and not fun to watch. So in this tutorial we explain how you can instantly get that cinematic look with just some simple lighting tricks.

One tip we use in the tutorial is practical lighting. This is often used in Hollywood films as actual lighting or as props. An example for practical lighting is the light from a cellphone, which is often used in horror movies when the power dies. We also discussed the cellphone technique in a horror lighting tutorial we did on Halloween. Another example is the light from the tv or a passing car. They all are lights that are visible in the scene and that add value. So they are used more then you think!

A great example for a movie were they use practical lighting is the new Bladerunner movie. Here there are a lot of street signs, holograms and control panels from space ships that light up the scene and the subject.


Like you can see in the last picture, the street lights illuminate the subject or rather create a silhouette. But they use the lights from the cars and the street to create a back light, which instantly gives that cinematic feeling to it. Then add some color grading, perfect costumes and some effects and you have a realistic cinematic sci-fi shot!


This video was supported by Videoblocks, an easy to use site full of stock footage, vector images, stock photos, music, sound effects and more.

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