Film-making can be an expensive hobby. Especially if you start to buy professional lights, backgrounds and other accessories.
Of course, there are some people who simply must have the pro item at whatever cost. But I’ve always found it more fun to look for alternatives at a fraction of the price…
For example, you can buy a huge cotton dust sheet from your local hardware store for about £5. Aldi were selling some recently. Dye it any colour you want, in the washing machine, and you have a useful background. Double bed sheets are good too. Check out your local discount store. But you do need 100% cotton, otherwise they may not pick up the full strength of the dye.
A few weeks ago I was in Lidl and spotted this rechargeable spotlight which is made by Osram. Incredibly I paid just £5 for it.
On a full charge, it gives out 50 watts of illumination for about ten minutes. I taped some diffusing material over the front to even out the beam and soften the light.
It’s great for shooting at night (a person talking to camera, for example) or for ‘filling in’ the shadows indoors or outside on dark winter days (put some blue gel over the lamp to match up the colour temperature to daylight).
Imagine how much a professional rechargeable video light would cost…
Some good video-making tips here.