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Set Lighting Technician's Handbook, 4th Edition

Book Description

Comprehensive. Detailed. Practical. Set Lighting Technician's Handbook, Fourth Edition, is a friendly, hands-on manual covering the day-to-day practices, equipment, and tricks of the trade essential to anyone doing motion picture lighting, including the lamp operator, rigging crew, gaffer, best boy, or director of photography. This handbook offers a wealth of practical technical information, useful techniques, as well as aesthetic discussions.

The Set Lighting Technician's Handbook focuses on what is important when working on-set: trouble-shooting, teamwork, set protocol, and safety. It describes tricks and techniques for operating a vast array of lighting equipment including LEDs, xenons, camera synchronous strobes, black lights, underwater units, lighting effects units, and many others. Since its first edition, this handy on-set reference continues to be widely adopted as a training and reference manual by union training programs as well as top university film production programs.

New to the fourth edition:
* Detailed information on LED technology and gear
* Harmonized with union safety and training procedures
* All the latest and greatest DMX gadgets, including remote control systems
* Many new and useful lights and how to use them and troubleshoot them.
* New additions to the arsenal of electrical distribution equipment that make our sets safer and easier to power.
* More rigging tricks and techniques.
* the same friendly, easy to read style that has made this book so popular.

Table of Contents

  1. Front Cover
  2. Half Title
  3. Title Page
  4. Copyright
  5. Dedication
  6. Contents
  7. Preface
  8. Companion Web site
  9. Acknowledgments
  10. CHAPTER 1 Set basics: Your first barbecue
    1. Job descriptions of the lighting crew
      1. Director of photography
      2. Gaffer
      3. Best boy electric
      4. Electricians
      5. Rigging crew
      6. The fixtures guy
      7. Generator operator
      8. Grip department
    2. The company
      1. Production staff
      2. The director's team
      3. Camera department
      4. Sound department
      5. Locations
      6. Transportation
      7. Art department
      8. The general public
    3. Block, light, rehearse, tweak, shoot
    4. The work world
  11. CHAPTER 2 Preproduction planning: Lighting package, expendables, and personal tools
    1. Preproduction planning
      1. Scouting locations
      2. Production meetings
    2. Equipment package
      1. The load-in
      2. The production van
    3. Expendable supplies
      1. Gels and diffusion
      2. Electrical expendables
    4. Tools and personal gear
      1. Tool belt
      2. Meters
      3. Other hand tools
      4. Personal gear
  12. CHAPTER 3 Light fixtures: The basic tungsten arsenal
    1. Tungsten lamps
    2. Fresnels
      1. Fresnel beam
      2. Fresnel accessories
      3. 20 and 24k tungsten Fresnels
      4. The lamp and its installation
    3. Soft lights
    4. “Bag” lights
    5. Open-face lights
      1. Prime fixtures
      2. Broads and nook lights
      3. Light kits
    6. PAR lights
      1. PAR lamps
      2. Par cans
      3. Molepars, master lite, cine-queen
      4. Par arrays
      5. Axially mounted par fixtures
    7. Ellipsoidal reflector spotlights
      1. Lamp adjustment and installations
      2. Ellipsoidal spotlight accessories
    8. Dedolights
    9. Beam projectors
    10. Area lights and backing lights
      1. Chicken coops and space lights
      2. Scoop lights and Skypans
      3. Cyc strips, ground rows, and borders
    11. Small fixtures
      1. Screw-base fixtures
      2. MR16 lamps and accessories
      3. Stick-up kits
  13. CHAPTER 4 Stands and rigging
    1. Stands
      1. Baby stands
      2. Junior stands
      3. Offsets, side arms, extensions, and right angles
      4. Using stands
      5. Crank-up and motorized stands
      6. Grip stands
      7. Booms
      8. Stand maintenance
    2. Rigging hardware
      1. Baby and junior nail-on plates
      2. Set wall mounts
      3. Set wall bracket
      4. Clamps
      5. Grids and green beds
      6. Other rigging hardware
  14. CHAPTER 5 Lighting objectives and methods
    1. Objectives
      1. Visibility (or selective visibility)
      2. Naturalism
      3. Composition
      4. Mood
      5. Time constraints
    2. The process of formulating a lighting strategy
      1. Key light: Lighting the actor's face
    3. The lighting triangle
      1. Fill
      2. Backlights, kickers, and hair lights
    4. Lighting the acting positions
      1. Back cross-keys
    5. Lighting the space and the background
      1. Ambience
      2. Backdrops
    6. Quantifying brightness and contrast
      1. Exposure
      2. Foot-candles
      3. F-stops
      4. Taking readings with an incident light meter
      5. Contrast, latitude, and the total value
      6. Spot meters
      7. Light level
  15. CHAPTER 6 Manipulating light: Tools, techniques, and the behavior of light
    1. Color
      1. White balance
      2. Color-temperature meter
      3. Color-correction gels
      4. Theatrical gels for tints
    2. Brightness
      1. Methods of control
      2. Falloff: Your friend, the inverse square law
      3. Dimmers
    3. Shape, pattern, and form
      1. Making cuts and patterns
      2. Soft light
      3. Diffusion
      4. Other ways of making soft light
    4. Movement
      1. Flicker effects: Television screen, flame, and fire
      2. Other moving light effects
  16. CHAPTER 7 Electrician's set protocol
    1. Set protocol
      1. Staging area
      2. Lighting the set
    2. Practicals
      1. Photoflood bulbs and PH bulbs
      2. Household bulbs
      3. Candella base bulbs
      4. Mushroom floods: R-40 and others
      5. MR-16
      6. Linestra tubes
      7. Controlling practicals with dimmers
      8. Wiring small fixtures
    3. Stingers and cabling
      1. Circuit balance and capacity
      2. 2k Plugging policy
      3. Cables crossing the set
      4. Cables crossing work areas
      5. Appropriate length
      6. Preventing “Kick-Outs”
      7. Repatching
      8. The gak package
      9. Labeling stingers and power cords
      10. Labeling dimmer settings
      11. Coiling stingers and cable
    4. Safety
      1. Ladders
      2. Parallels
      3. Working aloft
      4. Protecting floors
      5. Sprinkler systems
      6. Smoke, fire, and other bad smells
    5. Aerial lifts (condors and scissor lifts)
    6. The Wrap
      1. Coiling feeder cable
      2. Inventory
  17. CHAPTER 8 Light fixtures: The HMI arsenal
    1. Metal halide arc lights: “HMI”
      1. HMI fresnels
      2. HMI pars
      3. HMI “open-face” lights
      4. Accessories
      5. Small fixtures
      6. Tungsten-balanced arc-discharge lights
    2. HMI operation
      1. Setting up
      2. Striking
      3. On/off switches, safety loop, and UV protection
      4. Allowable camera speeds with HMIs
      5. Electronic (square-wave) ballasts
      6. Installing an HMI lamp
      7. Metal halide arc lamps
  18. CHAPTER 9 Fluorescent lights
    1. Kino Flo lamps and ballasts
    2. Kino FLo systems
      1. Portable modular fixtures
      2. Kino Flo fixtures with remote ballasts
      3. Kino Flo self-contained light fixtures
    3. DMX512 control and addressing
    4. Lumapanels
    5. Some additional notes about fluorescent lights
      1. Effect of temperature
      2. Calculating power needs
  19. CHAPTER 10 LED lights
    1. There's a new kid in town
    2. Color rendering of LEDs and LED light fixtures
    3. LED fixtures
      1. Pads
      2. Small panels
      3. Larger panels
      4. Ring lights
      5. Color wash fixtures
    4. LED technology
  20. CHAPTER 11 Lighting control: Control networks, moving lights, advanced devices, and computer applications in lighting
    1. DMX512
      1. DMX512 addressing
      2. DMX values and device personality
      3. Controllers
      4. Multiple DMX512 universes
      5. Running DMX512 cable
      6. Optical isolators and splitters
      7. Loss of signal
      8. Merger/combiner
      9. Wireless DMX
      10. Testing
      11. DMX: Past, present, and future
      12. Remote Device Management (RDM)
      13. Ethernet networks
    2. Advanced automated devices
      1. Moving lights (automated luminaires)
      2. Remote pan and tilt for conventional lights
      3. Media servers and video projectors for lighting effects
      4. Pixel-mapping systems
    3. Light plots
    4. Lighting with previsualization software
  21. CHAPTER 12 Electricity
    1. The fundamentals of electricity and electrical equations
      1. Volts (electromotive force)
      2. Amperes (current)
      3. Watts (power)
      4. The power equation
      5. Resistance and Ohm's law
    2. Parallel and series circuits
    3. How not to use electrical equations
    4. Components of a safe power circuit
      1. Control devices and polarity
      2. Overcurrent protection
      3. The current-carrying capacity of cable
      4. Types of feeder cable
    5. Equipment grounding
    6. Types of distribution circuits
      1. Direct current
      2. Alternating current
      3. Alternating current: Single-phase three-wire system
      4. Three-phase, four-wire systems
    7. System grounding
  22. CHAPTER 13 Distribution and dimming equipment
    1. Components of a distribution system
      1. Main disconnect and overcurrent protection for feeders
      2. Cam-Lok connectors
      3. Lugs and buss bars
      4. Mole pin connectors
    2. Distribution boxes
      1. Stage pin (Bates) connectors
      2. Receptacle boxes
      3. 19-pin “Socapex” connectors and cable
      4. Adapters
    3. Electronic dimmer systems
      1. Electronic dimmer circuit designs
      2. Forward-phase control dimmers—SCR
      3. Reverse-phase control dimmers
      4. Sinewave dimmers
      5. Strand CD80 dimmer packs
      6. ETC Sensor dimmer system
  23. CHAPTER 14 Working with electrical power
    1. Sizing distribution conductors
      1. Sizing phase conductors
      2. Sizing neutral conductors
      3. Sizing equipment grounding conductors
      4. Sizing grounding electrode and bonding conductors
    2. Line loss
      1. Causes of line loss
      2. Allowable voltage drop
      3. Mitigating line loss
      4. Cable size and other line loss calculations
      5. Simple line loss calculations
    3. Power problems from electronic loads
      1. Power factor
      2. Harmonic currents and effects on the neutral wire
    4. Measuring electricity
      1. Meter categories
      2. Voltage meters
      3. Circuit testers
      4. Measuring frequency (hertz rate)
      5. Measuring amperage
      6. Testing continuity and testing for shorts
      7. Wattmeter or power meter
    5. Electrical shocks and muscle freeze
  24. CHAPTER 15 Electrical rigging
    1. The role of the rigging gaffer
    2. Planning the rig
      1. Size and number of conductors
      2. Placement of distribution
    3. Rigging cable
      1. Identifying cable, labeling circuits
      2. Lacing cable
      3. Ventilating and separating runs
      4. Make first, break last
      5. Traffic areas
      6. Fire lanes
      7. Fall protection
      8. Root out bad contacts
      9. Waterfalls and cable drops
      10. Knots
      11. Strength of rope
    4. Rigging lights
      1. Weight-loading chain motors truss and pipe
      2. Testing
    5. Rigging lights and cable in aerial lifts
      1. Mounts
      2. Cabling
      3. Condor duty
    6. Paperwork
  25. CHAPTER 16 Power sources
    1. Batteries and inverters
      1. Battery chemistry and care
      2. Inverter systems
      3. 120 V DC lead-acid battery packs
    2. Generators
      1. Putt-putts (portable Honda generators)
      2. AVR generators
      3. Honda EU inverter generators
      4. Troubleshooting putt-putts
    3. Full-size generators
      1. Generator placement
      2. Selecting a generator
    4. 480 V Systems
      1. Utility power
      2. Line drops from utility power
      3. Tie-ins
      4. Approach protection
      5. Using available outlets
  26. CHAPTER 17 Special circumstances and practices
    1. Shooting on moving vehicles
      1. Poor man's process and other techniques
    2. Lighting in and around water
      1. Working with electricity around water and damp environments
    3. Underwater lighting
      1. The old drop-a-bulb-in-the-pool method
      2. Modern underwater fixtures
    4. Lighting matte photography
      1. Lighting the foreground
    5. High-speed photography and camera-synchronous strobes
  27. CHAPTER 18 Specialty lighting equipment
    1. Big guns
      1. SoftSun
      2. Carbon arc lights
    2. Lighting balloons
      1. Lightning effects
      2. Lightning strikes!
      3. Control units
      4. Power requirements
    3. Xenon lights
    4. Follow spots
      1. Preparing the follow spot
      2. Operating the follow spot
    5. Black lights
  28. APPENDIX A Photometric calculations and tables
    1. Converting to foot-candles
    2. Calculating field diameter
    3. Calculating intensity
  29. APPENDIX B Lamp Tables
  30. APPENDIX C Flicker-free frame rates
  31. APPENDIX D Electrical tables
  32. APPENDIX E IP and NEMA equipment ratings
    1. International protection ratings
    2. Nema ratings
  33. APPENDIX F Equipment suppliers and manufacturers
  34. APPENDIX G Lighting equipment order checklist
  35. APPENDIX H Expendables checklist
  36. APPENDIX I Gels and diffusions
  37. Glossary
  38. Index