Lighting 2

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Code Completion Credits Range Language Instruction Semester
304OSV2 Z 1 2T Czech summer

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Name of lecturer(s)

Learning outcomes of the course unit

This course is intended as an introduction to the theory and practice of lighting in film and television.

The starting point of the study is a recognition and analysis of day and non-day lighting situations with given natural sources. The presentation continues with an introduction to the characteristics of lighting devices from the perspective of their use in imitating natural and artificial sources.

Instruction is joined by demostrations of manners of constructing lighting in real environments and in the studio with basic objects (human face, figure).

Lighting in connection with the charaacteristics of recording media, to which, from the beginning, attention is devoted to exponometric practice.

Mode of study


Prerequisites and co-requisites

Knowledge of visual depction culture in a historical context. Physics, particularly optics at a high-school level.

Basic knowledge of being a cameraman, ability to manage basic film tasks.

Digital and analog cameras and all manual functions

Photometer and spotmeter

Course contents

Film lighting theory and practice. The phenomenon of light in all aspects.

Syllabus overview:

Three functions in the use of light in film and television:

  1. Light as the basic technical requirement for the genesis of optical depiction.
  2. Light from the viewpoint of information about the characteristics of the subject of scenic reality, its textures and reflection.
  3. Light as a means of artistic stylization of optical depiction.
  4. continuity


Light and its exposition effect are from the cameraman's viewpoint valuable in three aspects:

A. Quality - a) quality given by its spectral composition.

b) quality given by the character of the light source (point, diffuse).

B. Direction - from viewpoints: a) support or suppression of the of the perception of space depiction,

b) supporting or negation of perception of the actual shape and dimension of the depicted objects.

C. Intensity - a) intensity of its source and modification of its distance,

b) composition of the intensity of multiple sources: main light, supplementary and assisting.

Practical exponometrics.

A. Analysis of the lighting of a scene by measuring incident light on individual objects.

B. Analysis of the lighting of a scene from the perspective of its brightness structure - point exponometry.

Sources of light and lights.

A. Tools for changing the spectral composition of artificial lighting sources.

B. Tools for changing the character of the light source (diffusors, grids).

C. Regulation of the nature of an emitted light beam - convergence and divergence.

Basic lighting concepts

Surface reflection factors (reflection), effective exposition, exposure lighting, light ratio

Methods of constructing the lighting of a scene space.

A. Imitating the style of the primary lighting reality.

B. Professional conventions - deflection from strict logical lighting

C. Lighting supporting significant gestures in dramatic performance, including the creative application of aesthetic values and unusual character.

practical exercises: see detailed syllabi and white books

“hands” - stills b/w

studies of human hands; expression through gestures; lighting as a dramatic tool

“shiny still life” - stills b/w

lighting a shiny object; lighting sources as part of composition; framing; abstraction

Recommended or required reading

Ján Šmok, Umělé světlo ve fotografii, 1978

Bojanovský: Základní principy osvětlování

Bojanovský: Filmovým objektivem roč. 1961 č. 1-12, roč. 1962 č. 1-9

A.Golovňa: Umění kameramana

L.Baran: Portrét ve fotografii

J. Šmok: Úvod do teorie skladby kinematografického obrazu

K. Malkiewicz, “film lighting” 1986

D. Samuelson, “motion picture, camera and lighting equipment” 1980

american cinematographer’s manual

Firemní katalogy s přehledem o světelných zdrojích

Assessment methods and criteria

80% attendance required

Class participation, fulfillment of the tasks set in the semester, and assignment quality are required for a grade.



Further information

No schedule has been prepared for this course

The subject is a part of the following study plans