4 Tips for Effective Home Video Lighting

14 June 2020

As social distancing measures remain in place across the country and people continue to work from home, a growing number of content creators are looking for ways to upgrade their home video set up. While most content creators already have a high-resolution recording device like a mirrorless or DSLR camera, many are somewhat lacking in the lighting department.

While you don’t need a full professional studio lighting setup for high quality videos, effective lighting can go a long way. Whether you’re a vlogger or have just started live streaming fitness classes, consistently clear, well-lit videos are one of the best ways to keep viewers coming back for more. To help you achieve this goal, we’ve rounded up our top 4 tips for home video lighting below. Read on to discover our favourite tools, tips, and tricks for well-lit videos and live streams.

1. Use portable LED video lights

A portable LED video light is a simple yet effective way to boost the quality of your home video lighting. Lightweight and versatile, these lighting accessories can be mounted to a standard tripod to ensure steady, even light throughout your video or live stream. Better yet, if you’ll be moving around while filming, you can even mount them on the hot-shoe or accessory shoe of your camera.

One of the major benefits of LED video lights is how closely they replicate the soft, diffused quality of natural light. Their output can usually be carefully adjusted, meaning that you can use as much or as little as you need. Some models even allow you to adjust the colour temperature to give a cooler or warmer effect.

4 Tips for Effective Home Video Lighting4 Tips for Effective Home Video Lighting

Top Tip: Take the production quality of your home videos even further by trying out the 3-point lighting technique, in which you mount multiple LED lights on tripods or stands positioned throughout your shoot location.

2. Invest in an LED ring light

4 Tips for Effective Home Video Lighting4 Tips for Effective Home Video Lighting

If you’re a makeup vlogger or regularly film scenes that focus on food, products, or other small subjects, it’s well worth considering an LED ring light. As the name implies, these portable LED lights have a circular, ring-like shape that provides an even spread of light that’s perfect for macro photography.

In most cases, LED ring lights can simply be mounted to the front of your digital camera lens. This guarantees even, corner-to-corner lighting throughout your entire frame, no matter how close you get to your subject. For this reason, this type of LED light is perfect for any shots that require showing your subject in great detail such as online tutorials or reviews.

3. Consider smartphone compatible lighting

Don’t have a mirrorless or DSLR camera? No problem! Advances in technology mean that smartphone video recording capabilities are more than sufficient for shooting home videos or live streams with decent video quality. To take videos shot on your smartphone to the next level, go for a portable lighting solution that’s designed for mobile devices.

For a powerful yet portable option, we recommend the Profoto C1 Smartphone Video Light, which can be mounted on your tripod or simply held in the palm of your free hand - making it perfect for quick repositioning for more flattering angles.

If you’re more on the adventurous side and need something a little more rugged, go for the waterproof Lume Cube 2.0 LED Video Light instead, which can be easily converted for mobile devices using a simple smartphone mount. Small enough to fit in your pocket, this handy lighting accessory is waterproof to 9m and has a battery life of 1.5 hours.

4. Combine natural light & lightings tools for film

4 Tips for Effective Home Video Lighting4 Tips for Effective Home Video Lighting

We’re big fans of natural light photography, and when it comes to videos, we feel the same way! When shooting, always consider how natural light can enhance your shot and add texture and dimension to your footage. For best results, we recommend pairing natural light with artificial light sources and accessories, such as reflectors.

Affordable and simple yet incredibly effective, reflectors help redirect available light onto your subject and remove any unwanted shadows from your shoot. They can also be used to soften harsh lighting caused by midday or direct sun. 

Top Tip: For a balanced, professional finish, choose a well-lit filming location and use portable LED lighting as “fill lighting” to define your subject and control shadows.

Create your home video kit today

See home videos in a new light

Starting your own vlog or learning how to livestream on YouTube or another platform is an exciting creative activity and a great way to share your interests with the world. If you’re serious about creating great content, it’s important that you don’t let things like poor production quality and bad lighting get in the way.

Follow our above tips to film well-lit, engaging videos and live streams from the comfort of your own home, or visit our blog for more video and photography advice now!

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