samyour Website User Posts: 2

I love when the lighting in a movie or show expresses such art like in la la land, and daredevil. it relay shows you how much the directer knows about film making.


  • GodofThunder
    GodofThunder Website User Posts: 190 Just Starting Out
    edited June 2018

    So do I, I’m currently enjoying Luke cage season 2, and studying the lighting etc. However it would be the director of photography that would be involved with the lighting etc.

  • samyour
    samyour Website User Posts: 2

    relay i think its a team effort so see the vision that is in the film.

  • Triem23
    Triem23 Moderator Moderator, Website User, Ambassador, Imerge Beta Tester, HitFilm Beta Tester Posts: 18,956 Ambassador

    It's a team effort in terms of the director will talk with the DP about a desired look, but @GodofThunder is "more correct" here. The DP and team are directly responsible for lighting. A director on a union gig would be fired for touching a light. 

    I'm not kidding, btw. I was never lighting union, but I got fired off a union gig (and a lighting guy got fired with me) because the lighting guy dropped his e-tape when on a cherry picker, and I, an audio guy, tossed it up to him. 

    Yes, union sets really are that tight on job descriptions. I was audio, he was lighting, and it was literally his job to bring the cherry picker down, step down, grab the tape, get back in the cherry picker and reposition it before going back to taping cables. If another light crew member had been around, that person would be allowed to throw the roll of tape to his buddy. As audio, yeah, I can't do that under union rules. Never mind this saved several minutes of time on a shoot day where lighting was behind... 

    A director will tell a DP the color and quality of light desired, but the DP is the one deciding which light instruments to use, where to rig them, which colors to gel in, and the director ain't allowed to do that.

    Lighting is 80-90% DP with the rest being director guidance. 

  • WhiteCranePhoto
    WhiteCranePhoto Website User Posts: 928 Enthusiast

    Actually, in a lot of cases, the director will describe the shot they want (and with newbie directors, it's often very hand-wavy). I'm usually the one who decides on what colors to put on what lights as well as what kinds of fixtures to use and where to put the lights and the camera. 

    That's where the job title comes from... The Director of Painting With Light.

    Cinematographer: One who paints with light in motion.

    Most of the time, you really do NOT want the director involved in the lighting, and most directors really don't want to deal with it anyway. Plus, blocking, rehearsing, and crafting performances is a lot more important for the director. 


  • APOModern
    APOModern Website User Posts: 5

    It's a group effort, but I agree that DP has most of the job and the Director / Higher ups have a general idea or sometimes don't even know quite what they want until they see it. 

  • AlecBeach
    AlecBeach Website User Posts: 5

    If you want to see a great movie with tone and lighting check out the original S.T.A.L.K.E.R film

Sign In or Register to comment.

Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!