Today on the podcast we are taking a behind the scenes look at a recent commercial I shot and breaking down how it all came together.

Rather than just focus on the lighting on the day I thought it might be beneficial to talk about some of the location conversations that happen on the different scouts and how those impact the final results. 

Below you will find some additional initial scout images so you can follow along with the show.


A Cinematography System: The Playbook Approach

You like the breakdown episodes and you want to be a better DP?  Would you like to hear how I think when it comes to cinematography and steal the methodology I built up over the years?  

OK.  Check out the course I created at the link below:

A Cinematography System: The Playbook Approach

My mindset around cinematography has morphed and changed over time as I am always seeking the most efficient workflow to get the best results I can.  In the course I lay out exactly how I breakdown a scene to make sure I am maximizing the tools I have available to me.

This is the closest thing I have created to a cheat code for up and coming DPs to bypass the years of trial and error I had to put in.

Patreon Video: Loot

We have done a bunch of dark moody pieces recently on the Patreon Breakdown so I thought we would mix it up and take a look at a completely different style this week.

We are looking at Apple TV's Loot shot by Mark Schwartzbard for some high key inspiration.

You can find this week's Patreon content by clicking the link below:

The Wandering DP Patreon Group

If you are a fan of the podcast and want more video content the patreon group is the place to be.  Each and every week I release an exclusive podcast, video, or live stream just for the Patreon members.

Patreon members also get access to the Private Facebook community for the show.  The podcast couldn't exist without the Patreon support and I do my best to take care of the supporters.

Sports Cinematography - The Spot

We shot this ad on the Alexa Mini LF paired with Hawk Anamorphics.

I am almost positive we shot everything on the 75mm but I could be wrong.  The lighting package was essentially non-existent with a small van package with no generator over the multiple days.

The spot follows 6 different athletes all performing their various activities followed by a nice massage gun product session.

The Spot - Shot by Shot

Section 1 - Location Stills

Set Up #1 - The Front Track

The Shot

Our hero talent pulls of some fancy dribble moves and blows past his defender on his way to the rim.

The Lighting

We didn't have the firepower to override what was naturally available at the gym so we went with what we had.

We used a single row of broadcast beams to act as the far side key light and then took away as much light from inside as possible to give it some shape.

The Result

Set Up #2 - The Side Track

The Shot

The camera tracks left to right with the talent as he goes from the 3 point line to the hoop.

The Lighting

Same as above but now you can see we left some of the distant practicals on in the background to give it a little bit of interest rather than just plain flat.

The Result

Set Up #3 - The Product Shot

The Shot

Our main talent sits on a bench and uses the massage gun to ease his pain from his tumble on the court.

The Lighting

Here because we moved so far away from the bank of tv beam lights we had to BYO our key light.  We used an Arri M18 bounced into a 12x12 of bleached muslin frame right for the key.

Behind camera and to the left is all negative fill via a number of 4x4 floppies and finally frame left is an edge light.  Some sort of LED panel like a skypanel s-60 or creamsource vortex to add a bit of 3d depth to the body.

The Result

Location Stills #2 - The Cyclist

Set Up #4 - The Track

The Shot

The cyclist powers up the hill as the camera tracks her from left to right.

The Lighting

The distance we had to travel for the track eliminated any lighting opportunities we might have had.  It would have been nice to kill the ambient bounce and add an eye light but we were down a tracking vehicle that could pull it off.

So donuts on this shot except the low sun and the heavy shadows from the trees.

The Result

Set Up #5 - The Stop & Breathe

The Shot

Our hero talent pauses to contemplate whether she should keep going or not.

The Lighting

See above but with the addition of a 4x4 poly frame right.

The Result

Shot #6 - Product Shot

The Shot

We see our hero talent using the massage gun as the sun sets in the background.

The Lighting

The sun was getting very low very quickly so we didn't have tons of time to mess around here.  There is a 4x4 frame of hi-lite frame left taking the harshness out of the sun coupled with a 4x4 floppy frame right to add some shape.  

There is a 4x4 poly frame right as well from behind to help add that blue edge light.

The Result

About The Author

Cinematographer and host of The Wandering DP Podcast. You can see select examples of work at my personal site or follow me on instagram.

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