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Turning Home Video into Pro Video > Turning Home Video into Pro Video - Pg. 51

more detail accurately. (When watching a movie being flmed, you sometimes see huge lights set up, even in daylight: they're there to fll in the shadow areas, so that the camera can "see," for example, the actors' eyes.) Film cameras can photograph details in a scene that has a 10:1 contrast ratio (high- lights are 10 times brighter than the dark shadow areas). Video, on the other hand, can't capture details outside a contrast ratio of about 3:1 or 4:1. That's another reason lighting is much more important when using a camcorder, as noted above. Hard light vs. soft light Hard light comes from a small light source falling directly on an object. It creates hard edges between the highlight and shadow areas. For example, when someone's stand- ing in direct sunlight, the shadows on his face are harsh and dark. This high contrast emphasizes wrinkles, skin blemishes, baggy eyes, and other facial features. In other words, hard light is unfattering light. Soft light, on the other hand, is less direct, offering softer, smoother gradations of light from brightest to darkest areas. You get soft light from a large light source, usually refected or diffused, like the outdoors light on an overcast day or the light refected from the umbrellas used by photographers. The result: soft shadows or no shadows; everything is lit fairly evenly. Video Lighting: A Crash Course