There are five ways that lighting are used for video; drawing attention (or hiding), emotional cues, show time of day, describe location, and increase exposure.
There are two types of lighting Low Key and High Key. Low Key is very dramatic, contrasty, with large shadows. Low High Key lighting has less to no shadows, very bright and often includes large amounts of whites and highlights. Low Key lighting is often used in things such as dramatic pieces. High Key lighting is often used for things such as corporate videos, fashion, wedding videos and some comedy/sitcoms.
Location vs People. In something such as a documentary about say a cook. You would want to light the cook the most and use shadows to hide most of the kitchen. However if you were doing a corporate video about the restaurant, you would want to light for the kitchen with the cooks just being part of the kitchen, not the main part of the kitchen. So the lighting work take more of a high key lighting style.
Color and amount of color can change the appearance of the space. For example, warmer lights give a more homey feel while fluorescent cooler lights would give more of a corporate feel. Also home lights are often more contrasty while businesses often have more fill light.
Stereotypes of lighting can help sell emotions and help people connect to the story quicker. For example scifi uses strong colors like purple, blue, orange, ect. Sitcoms use lots of fill and very little contrast. Corporate videos are often much brighter than Dramas.
Depth can help draw attention to the foreground or the character. Depth can be created by changing the color temperature of the foreground and background lights.
Darkness can create mystery. An interior night shoot can be shot during the day by covering the windows with sheets and by using cooler lights to simulate moonlight. Morning light is usually warmer than the usual 4000k.
Interior light higher up can create more natural looking light. Light from bellow creates an evil, scary look for horror and thrillers. Use reflectors for outside shoots.
LED lights are awesome.
So theres just some lighting tips.
Zachary Will is an Award-Winning Filmmaker creating short films and content for the Internet as the owner of Riverside Studios. He has a Bachelor's in Film from Full Sail University. He has worked on productions for companies like Webmd, Sears, Home Depot, Six Flags and more!
"the trick is to never give up... I think the secret of success is not how little you get knocked down but how often you get back up." - Gareth Edwards