Archive for April, 2015

Four Seasons


MalibuA Fall Sunset in Malibu, California

Description: I wanted to use the cyc to create the image of a sun setting. Malibu is known for being pink and fun, so I wanted my sunset to have some pinkish tones to really suggest location. I tried to light my actors naturally, using sidelight to show striking angles and shadows of an actual sunset.

Cyc Light:

Top: R39@Full

Bottom: R43@75%, R21@50%


Model Light:

Side Light: R41@Full, 19 deg. elevation, 56 deg. side angle, 1′ above deck, 12′ SR of model, 8′ DS of model, 15′ throw.

Top Light: R83@50%, 54 deg. elevation, direct back, 17′ above deck, centered on model, 14′ throw

Front Light: R33@Full, 14 deg. elevation, 10′ above deck, centered on model, 16′ throw





Spring Sunrise in Maine

Description: Unlike Malibu, I wanted this lighting to feel very simple and plain because Maine is a quieter place. I wanted the sky to be a very light blue and the sun to be a very light yellow. I wanted the two colors to really blend together. On the model, I used a yellow, low side light to look like a rising sun, and to create shadows on the box.

Cyc Light:

Top: R53@Full

Bottom:R14@75%, R66@50%


Model Light:

Side Light: R14@50%, 19 deg. elevation, 55 deg. side angle, 1′ above deck, 12′ SR of model, 8′ DS of model, 15′ throw

Front Light: R02@75%, 14 deg. elevation, direct back, 10′ above deck, centered on model, 16′ DS of model, 16′ throw


Noon on a Hot Summer Day in Mexico

Description: I used a lot of orange light to really simulation the beating down of a warm sun. Mexico has lot of warm colors from the deserts and hot sunlight. I also included a sidelight to brighten the models face and make him visible.

Cyc Light

Top:R07@50%, R23@Full

Bottom: R23@Full


Model Light:

Side Light: R23@75%, 23 deg. elevation, 56 deg. side angle, 12′ above deck, 12′ SR of model, 8′ DS of model, 16′ throw

Top Light:R23@Full 54 deg. elevation, direct back. 17′ above deck, centered on model, 8′ DS of model, 14′ throw


Winter Afternoon in New England

Description: I know a winter afternoon in New England very well. The amazing thing, is when it’s all light blue and white. I wanted to use the cyc to create a really bright light colored sky. The model is also in a cool and white colored lighting. The lighting should make the stage feel cold and barren.

Cyc Light:

Top: R121@50%, R60@75%

Bottom: R60@Full


Model Light:

Top Light: R53@Full, 54 deg. elevation, direct back light, 17′ above deck, centered on model, 8′ DS of model, 14′ throw

Front Light: R62@75%, 14 deg. elevation, direct front light, 10′ above deck, centered on model, 16′ DS of model, 16′ throw

2 attempts, and 4 seasons later (or, Jesse begins to figure out VLL)


Summer in Mexico. Since the description was “hot,” I settled for a picture of the desert instead of a romanticized Mexican beach, which would have very cool elements due to the ocean.

L102: 48 deg. elevation, 37 deg. side, 17′ above, 6′ SR, 8′ DS, 15′ throw
L102: 52 deg. elevation, 21 deg. side, 17′ above, 3′ SR, 8′ DS, 14′ throw

L102 Full, NC Full



Maine sunrise

Maine sunrise. Love the way the Sun is hitting the model, it looks like a redemptive morning, but also dangerous because (as the old adage goes) “pink sky in morning, sailors take warning.”

G995, 50%. 0 deg. elevation, 56 deg. side, 6′ above, 12′ SR, 8′ DS, 14′ throw
AP6300 Full: o deg. elevation, 6′ above, 12′ SR, Direct Sidelight, 12′ throw

AP7450 Full, L102 Full, G995 Full







Malibu sunset. In contrast to the Mexico one, I wanted to make this feel not too hot. A nice, comfortably warm night when these two lovebirds could enjoy each other’s company without needing to turn the AC on full blast. The purple tones at the bottom suggest a nice, balanced temperature.

AP 6800 FULL, 52 deg elevation, 21 deg. back, 17′ above, 3′ SR, 8′ US, 14′ throw

AP7350 Full, Blue 25%, R15 25%






New England winter. This was a tricky one. I don’t quite think I got the balance right, or the angle for the light to hit the model, no matter what positioning I experimented with. Having experienced a lifetime of New England winters I recognize this washed-out, greyish color with brown and blue undertones, but not having shadows from bare tree branches in there feels

AP2080 – 52 deg. elevation, 21 deg. side, 17′ above, 3′ SL, 8′ DS, 14′ throw
AP2080 – 48 deg. elev, 37 deg. side, 17′ above, 6′ SL, 8′ DS, 15′ throw

AP 2220 75%, Ap2310 (Full)

Lava Lamp Light Observation

Location: My Room

Time: 4/17/15, 1 AM

I turn my lava lamp on before I go to bed some nights. I don’t usually like when the room is pitch black when I sleep but I don’t want regular lamps on either because they’re too bright. The blue and green light within the lava lamp are perfectly dim and create a cool ambiance that relaxes me. Normally I only use it after a hard day when I need to relax. I put on soft acoustic music to complete the atmosphere. All that’s really illuminated is a small circle of space around the lamp. The rest of the room catches the slightest bit of a blue glow. It’s perfect for falling asleep.

Photo Observation: Amusement


Source: Me

This is from one of my first trips to the city. The sheer amount of light and color simultaneously overwhelmed me and filled me with wonder. It’s almost blinding to look at in the photo because all the bright lights are reflecting off all the surfaces. This is a busy and crowded environment that screams entertainment and life. Even if you’re not doing anything in particular, the stimuli alone is enough to amuse. Looking at this picture, it’s easy to imagine how everything on the ground moved even after the snapshot was taken.


Photo Observation 9


Source: My own photo


This is an outing to our local Applebee’s with my friends over the spring break. Of course I have positive associations with it because it was a trip I took for my own amusement, but I think the lighting also reflects the photo theme well. The  mix of blue, white, and red lighting gives the setting some fun variety. I think there’s also something about being able to see the source of the lighting that reinforces a feeling of amusement. Think of carnivals and clubs. I work at an arcade, which I considered using a photo from, and the many lights there draw people in and make the place feel like a place for entertainment and amusement.


Light Observation 15

1) April 16, ~11:00PM, by Constitution

2) Several white lampposts

3) This will catch me up on lighting moments.

I was walking back from the Hammer Lab after doing my light lab project and still had lighting on the brain. Because the weather has been nicer, I was able to observe my surrounding during my walk rather than protecting my face from the elements, be it rain, snow, or wind. I noticed that the lamps on the lampposts were particularly white, and they seemed somehow shorter or closer to me than usual. Although the elevation on campus is varied, I felt like the lights existed on their own plane. It felt strangely like I was observing a fairy world, where all the lights were laughing little fairy houses in the wilderness.

Light Observation 14

1) April 10, ~10:00PM, my neighbor’s yard

2) The shadow of my neighbor’s tree

3) I’m almost done with lighting moments, I swear.

I was watching my dog in the yard at night and I had a clear view of my neighbor’s hose which sits on a hill slightly above me. She has a light on the side of her house by her garage which gives off a bright yellow light. The light was hitting a tree which has been there for ages, and the shadow stretched almost all the way down to the bottom of the hill. The light was the classic artificial yellow vs. natural blue which is pretty central to all my lighting moments, but the blue shadow of the tree was a new one for me. I felt like it was moving, rolling down the hill in some way which gave a little life to the night.


Light Observation 13

1) April 6, ~8:00PM, my (other) grandma’s house

2) Their porch light vs. the natural light

3) I live next door to my grandparents–not the grandma from the previous light observation. I was walking down the hill to their house when I noticed that their was a nice contrast between their porch light and the blue almost-night sky. The moon was still decently sized to give off light and it was reaching night but it wasn’t completely dark, so everything was visible, but washed in blue. Their porch light is old and very yellow, and they have a white lattice directly by their door. The light from the porch lamp was hitting their porch, the face of their house, and the lattice and part of the rose bush which sticks through the lattice. It was interesting to see the lattice and rose bush block the yellow light from the rest of their garden. It felt like looking at a person with a hand to the side of their face, telling a secret that the night didn’t know.

Light Observation 12

1) April 4, ~7:30PM, my backyard

2) A suburb and a town in the distance

3) My house is at the top of a mountain, so from my backyard I can see other hills. I was walking my dog when I stopped and noticed that this was a rare time of the year. Because the weather had only recently warmed up, the buds on the trees below my backyard had not come out yet (it’s a hill–the trees are a woodsy area lower on the hill, it’s a difficult visual to explain), but the sunsets were happening at a much later time, so I could see the next hills in the distance pretty clearly in the light. There was a stunning sunset developing, and on top of that I could see a small suburb on the hill next to us (it’s really just one street–again, hard to visualize) and the town behind it, which already had the streetlamps on and all the shopping centers had their neon signs lit up. I felt like there was movement, like I was being drawn backyard from the action.

Light Observation 11

1) April 2, 10:33PM, my grandmother’s house

2) Night sky in rural central PA

3) I have a lot of great lighting moments from home, which is good because I have some catching up to do.

Hilariously, the first thing I noticed when I got out of the car in PA was the lighting. The weather was fantastic and it was a full moon. Because it’s a rural area, the full moon is the primary source of light and there are plenty of visible stars. I was at my grandmother’s house. She lives in a valley in the middle of nowhere–her neighbors are very far away from her house. The only artificial light in the immediate area was coming from her house and the car lights. I ran out to the middle of the front yard to catch the picture below, but my iPhone camera doesn’t do justice to the real thing. The feeling when I get when I see a scene like this is very peaceful, homey, and sleepy. It probably looks creepy to other people, but I associate this kind of darkness and solitude, this house out in the open, with being home. I feel  like the light from her house is a warm welcome, it’s inviting, and being all by itself in such a vast place, it’s like a beacon.