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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre General Photography Talk 
Thread started 04 Jul 2009 (Saturday) 12:34
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Properly lighting a green screen shot

 
bwolford
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Jul 04, 2009 12:34 |  #1

Does anyone have any tips to light a green screen shot properly? I don't need links to software to extract green screen images. They don't help if you have color casts onto your subject. I'm struggling with eliminating color casts of the green screen onto my subjects.

IMAGE: http://thewolfords.com/POTN/greenscreenorig.jpg

There are all sorts of reflections onto the legs and even along the hair line and her back. Clearly I have the light too hot on the floor, but it even reflects in the shadows...

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tstowe
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Jul 04, 2009 12:50 |  #2

Here are a few tips:

http://www.film-and-video.com …examples-greenscreen.html (external link)
http://www.youtube.com​/watch?v=70SQCLk5e7Q (external link)
http://www.mediacolleg​e.com …reen-screen/lighting.html (external link)
http://www.dvshop.ca/d​vcafe/dv/greenscreen.h​tml (external link)
http://www.ehow.com …n-screen-photography.html (external link)
http://www.pdf-search-engine.com …for-green-screen-pdf.html (external link)


www.ToddStowe.com (external link)
www.TheTalon.SmugMug.c​om (external link)

  
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bwolford
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Jul 04, 2009 14:11 as a reply to  @ tstowe's post |  #3

Tood, thanks for those great links.

They work great for video or head shots when the shadow can be eliminated. For example, I can process the image I posted as an example very easily if I crop the area of shadow.

My challenge is I want the shadow to be maintained while not casting green on the subject. The shadow is a benefit if I am trying to create an image like this with out a cast:

IMAGE: http://thewolfords.com/POTN/greenscreen5.jpg


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Karl ­ Johnston
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Jul 04, 2009 19:07 |  #4
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I've got to ask; why green ? I've never used a green screen before, but I have used a hilite lastolite background for hi-keys. I would think that white would be a better option for putting susbsitute backgrounds in rather than green; the cast would be gone, at least.

Why is green the chosen color for these screens? ???


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bwolford
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Jul 05, 2009 09:50 as a reply to  @ Karl Johnston's post |  #5

Karl, I'm beginning to wonder that myself. I can say that if you can light a 3/4 or portrait without casting the green, it is ridiculously simple to extract someone. The problem is these full body kind of shots. I have no idea how it's so simple for film. I do know now that the shadows you might see in a moving using green screen are digitally added.

I've found a technique from TooManyHobbies that uses gray to make applying a new background almost trivial.


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Karl ­ Johnston
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Jul 05, 2009 15:23 |  #6
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Tried using the replace color tool or the desaturate brush? Bit of a hack way to do things, of course, but it eliminates the greens.

I haven't done stuff like this before, but speaking from general knowledge

Here's my ridiculously amateur job with replace color on the dark greens:

IMAGE NOT FOUND
IMAGE IS A REDIRECT OR MISSING!
HTTP response: NOT FOUND | MIME changed to 'image/gif' | Redirected to error image by FLICKR

(You're right, it is easy to separate her from the screen but it is difficult to make it look realistic, afterwards)

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Jon ­ Foster
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Jul 05, 2009 17:47 |  #7

Not to push another product on you but we use Photokey to do most of the green screen replacements in my photography classes. It handles the green color cast pretty well on it's own. I think you can download the demo at TubeTape.com. When dealing with a class full of kids the use of program like this makes life nice and easy.

But to the point of the post, you need to have near perfect light separation. Most of the time we have a good 6 feet of space between the green/blue screens and the students. We use two 1,000 watt constant power lights in softboxes to light the backdrop and usually end up using two more 1,000 watt lights to light the subjects. We also have several people taking shots so nobody uses a flash. For the floor you will also need something to move the subjects away from the screen to limit the color cast. Or you need to have the subject colored with something dark that won't pick up the green/blue.

I don't have any examples to show you because we can't post pictures of our students online etc.

Jon.


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bwolford
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Jul 05, 2009 21:54 as a reply to  @ Jon Foster's post |  #8

Another forum member suggested an incredibly simple technique.
It involves creating a new layer and then setting it's blend mode to HUE. Then select the various correct tones for the green areas and paint over the effected areas. Selecting the right skin, hair, and clothing tone helps...

Here's the corrected result. 30 seconds after I figured out what I was doing! I'm thrilled. Rene' is a life saver!!!


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bwolford
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Jul 05, 2009 22:14 |  #9

Karl Johnston wrote in post #8228114 (external link)
(You're right, it is easy to separate her from the screen but it is difficult to make it look realistic, afterwards)

That's why this technique for using an overlay layer and finding a way to solve the green cast solves the problem. I'm good to go thanks to my good friends here at POTN. Gotta love this place!!!

With TooManyHobbies gray replacement technique and Rene's color cast correction technique, I'm good to go. Of course, I should still shoot gray, but ask long as I have this green screen I'll have to use it until I save enough bubble gum wrappers for gray paper or muslin (paper probably being a better solution).


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Harrison ­ T
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Sep 20, 2009 23:12 |  #10
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Properly lighting a green screen shot
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