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Product lighting and cinematography is a necessary skill for any commercial cinematography. However, not all products and brands are the same, so you need to be able to tailor your lighting style and production design to each brand, as well as each product. Matte and reflective products have very different lighting considerations, and some brands will require a brighter, high-key look, whereas others work with a cinematic, moody vibe. Today, cinematographer and co-founder of ShareGrid, Brent Barbano, shows us several tips and examples for how to approach product cinematography, in this case with beer bottles.
In this episode, Brent teaches us how to approach product lighting and cinematography, specifically with beer bottles. These bottles are typically made out of amber colored glass, and are reflective, so careful consideration has to be used when planning the lighting and production design to complement the materials and colors. In our first example, we move the camera on a Dana Dolly while using a variety of colors and rectangular sources to enhance the shape and colors of the bottle. In the second example, we actually use the Dana Dolly to move the lights, while the camera remains stationary, for a cinematic reveal.
Brent also talks about the importance of making the product look as good as possible, by paying attention to every detail such as the colors on the label and how to complement them with lighting and production design. He also shows you how to light reflective products by manipulating the physical shape of light sources. Brent also discusses some amazing tips such as how to use glycerine to give bottles a refreshing, cool condensation look, and how to make bottles look like they’re glowing.
Through learning how to light and cinematically shoot product commercials, you’ll be able to open up more doors in commercial cinematography. You’ll learn how to craft your lighting to enhance the desired features of a product, and make these products and cinematic commercials memorable.
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