You’d think lighting for video would come easy to someone who’s well-versed in still photography lighting setups. After all, light is light, right? But, when it comes to video, I’ve had my struggles. I’ve had some luck with DIY lighting, but those solutions always seemed cumbersome — and they lacked polish. So, a couple of years ago, I decided to purchase a set of “starter” constant lights to help give my indoor videos a more controlled, professional look. But the struggle continued.
My Softbox Video Lighting Solution
Ok, first I’m just going to admit that I made a rookie error. It happens to the best of us, even non-rookies. But I should’ve known that the 24″ Impact Fluorescent Softbox was just not going to cut it for the type of lighting I wanted for my videos. Don’t get me wrong, it’s great for lighting details, which comes in really handy for tabletop setups and tutorials featuring close-up shots. But for room lighting, or even just “talking head” shots, I don’t get the results I want. The lighting fixture itself is fine, but the softbox is just too small. My video about the correct use of a softbox explains why.
My solution: Use a 43″ translucent shoot-through umbrella to give me an effectively wider, bigger light coming out of that softbox. In the video, you can see how I simply remove the front panel of the softbox and slide in one of my shoot-through umbrellas (the lighting fixture features a handy shaft holder).
Now, I’ve got a much larger light source and possibly a cooler light. Oh, right, I forgot to mention that these lights can be rather warm and very bright. What I really need is a nice LED lighting solution. But that will come with time and as my budget allows. For now, this solution is working out just fine.