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Motion Picture and Video Lighting Paperback – September 5, 2007

ISBN-13: 978-0240807638 ISBN-10: 0240807634 Edition: 2nd

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Frequently Bought Together

Motion Picture and Video Lighting + Cinematography: Theory and Practice: Image Making for Cinematographers and Directors + The Filmmaker's Eye: Learning (and Breaking) the Rules of Cinematic Composition
Price for all three: $95.15

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Focal Press; 2 edition (September 5, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0240807634
  • ISBN-13: 978-0240807638
  • Product Dimensions: 10 x 7.1 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #59,638 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Blain Brown is a cinematographer, director, writer and teacher. He currently runs the cinematography program at Los Angeles Film School.

As a Director of Photography specializing in features and commercials, he is now based in LA. His books include A Sense of Place; Motion Picture and Video Lighting, Cinematography: Theory and Practice and The Filmmaker's Pocket Reference. His work can be seen at www.BlainBrown.com.

Customer Reviews

It's very well informed and up to date.
Hung Tran
Blain Brown's Lighting book explains proper techniques and terminology which the film industry relies heavily on.
J. Branch
Great book for anyone who wants to learn,or study lighting.
Will Thomas

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

31 of 31 people found the following review helpful By Rick Wise on December 27, 2007
Format: Paperback
After a long lifetime as a practicing director of photography, I now also teach graduate film and video lighting at the San Francisco Academy of Art University. In a quest for the best book for my students, one that provides background and needed information to the hands-on work we do, I searched through most of the available texts and found Blain Brown's to be by far the best book out there for aspiring directors of photography. Until this semester, I used his previous edition. I am delighted by this new edition, which brings many out-of-date issues up to date.

For a purely technical book, a gaffer's "bible," see Harry Box's Set Lighting Technician's Handbook, Third Edition: Film Lighting Equipment, Practice, and Electrical Distribution
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By M. MacDonald on January 21, 2010
Format: Paperback
This is a fantastic book. As someone who has shot a limited amount of both film and video, I wanted to learn more specifics about lighting, exposure theory, color theory, and so on. Brown's book is PACKED with highly useful, very practical information, and comes at a much better price than some competing books which are not nearly as good. Plus, it includes a DVD with lighting demonstrations, technical tests, and short scenes illustrating the lighting principles covered in the book. Also, I really like the section of Brown's book that lists all the major types of lights used on professional shoots (from Fresnels and HMIs to PARs, Dino's, MaxiBrutes, FAYs, Soft Lights, Space Lights, fluorescents, and so on). Yes, Brown's book is a bit more technical than some, but he also covers the basics very well.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By C. Vetter on August 11, 2009
Format: Paperback
I don't read a lot of books, but this one is definitely worth the time. It's extremely detailed and in-depth. If you're a beginner, this book will give you the complete knowledge you're looking for without going over your head. If you're a seasoned pro, you'll find this helpful as a reference, or to fill in the gaps of things you might have missed.

At any rate, HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Z. Mehrbach on November 30, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I teach film and video at the college level, and whenever a student wants a book recommended as a general learn lighting book I recommend this.

1. This comes with a great DVD that shows visually the difference between many types of hard and soft light as well as numerous light placements and types of bounce. A lot of people who get into film are visual learners, and this DVD is awesome for those of us who like to look at something for results based on how the lighting is set up.

2. I love that Blaine gives such a detailed description of how electricity works. This is something that is very difficult to learn unless it's really laid out there for you. The book is almost worth it just for this section.

3. The pictures int his book are great. They are from very accessible movies and are great examples of each thing that Blaine is trying to show.

Along with Blaine Brown's cinematography book you really only need to get two books to get a great understanding of the medium. I would never recommend reading over real world experience. But by being on set and reading this book you'll be off to a great start.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Jim Newberry on May 18, 2009
Format: Paperback
A solid introduction to film lighting, with plenty of illustrations and photos of real world, on-set lighting examples (most of the production stills are contemporary, but there are some fabulous historic ones as well). The book touches on the theory and art of lighting, but the scope is mostly technical, thoroughly covering hardware, lighting crew roles, color temperature and exposure, and different scene setups. Highly recommended to anyone who wants to learn movie lighting fundamentals.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Rough Luxury on October 12, 2008
Format: Paperback
I felt it was helpful, this is the first book on lighting that I am reading so I don't have anything to compare it against. Some of the chapters I skipped reading because it was too much into the electrical side (i.e. electrical power distribution) but that may be what someone else needs to know, I just wanted a ground floor introduction on How to light for film making. The DvD was useful.
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8 of 11 people found the following review helpful By cine-flexer on July 20, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
its a good book, handles lotsa topics well. but seemed slightly outta date for the newer digital cinema and DSLR cinema.
But repeated readings can give you strong lighting knowledge + included DVD is helpful. Only wish it would have included more scenario lighting situations and more situation for the indie filmmaker or the amateur who only had very basic lighting to work with.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on April 30, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am less than an amateur so my opinion should be taken with a large dose of salt. That said, this book received such high praise that I figured I could learn a ton from it. There is definitely a lot of information in it but more than half of it is VERY technical. I am talking about a whole host of things that go FAR beyond types of lights, placement, gels and so forth. There is simply too much info that I do not need as a beginner videographer - a whole bunch that I won’t even need down the road as far as I can tell. This book, I believe, is used as a textbook in film schools and covers that kind of ground. It would also be a great reference book for someone whose job is only lighting a set. However, for someone like me that is doing all things related to a video shoot, I do not need much beyond the first couple of chapters. I am not giving it a bad review, it’s well written and there is useful info in it. It’s simply not for beginners.
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Motion Picture and Video Lighting
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