Using Color Temp to Create Depth and Dimension with your HD Video

Shane Hurlbut discusses creative uses of color balance and how growing up on a farm has inspired him to experiment with new and unique lighting fixtures.

I have been asked this question many times, “Do you white balance your camera?” I respond with one word, “Never.” White balancing a video camera is a holdover from the days of Ikegami cameras, the tubes inside that would burn if you shot a bright light. AWB is your enemy. Period.

When I shoot film, I use specific stocks that are either daylight or tungsten based to react to blue daylight color temp at 5500 deg. Kelvin or 3200 deg. Kelvin for tungsten. I never set my digital camera to either one of these settings. On some cameras, it is your only choice. One reason I have gravitated towards the Arri Alexa and Canon cameras is not only for their incredible sensors, but also because they understand this fact. You can rotate the wheel in WB mode on a Canon or on the Alexa in a sub menu to scroll to your look

While working with one of my favorite directors, Maurice Marable, we were doing a spot in an underground parking garage. When you went with the color temp of the lights that existed in the space, the mood was blah, no depth, no dimension. I got on the scroll wheel of the Alexa and cranked it down to 2700 deg. Kelvin, and Maurice was like “Wow, that looks bangin!!!” Just the simple use of this tool can create a whole other chapter in the way you light.

Shane Hurlbut | Read the Full Article