How To Film Indoors With Natural Light (Tips and Tricks)

Filming with natural light can be a challenge. Compared to artificial light, natural light does n’t bend as fluently to your filmmaker sensibilities. But if you take time to plan precisely, you wo n’t have too important trouble rephotographing with natural light indoors.

Below, I ’ll go into further detail on the tips and tricks when rephotographing indoors with natural light. By the end of this composition, I hope you come comfortable working with light as a filmmaker.

1. Consider Whether You Truly Need an Each-Natural Light Setup

Before you suppose about using natural light for an inner shoot, consider whether it’s your stylish option.

Are you using natural light because of budget constraints? If that’s the only reason, know that budget lighting options are available, which we ’ll bandy latterly.

Are you using natural light because you want to produce a particular effect for your film? In the movie “ The Revenant,” the filmmakers used natural light to give the bystander a sense of time and ever-present pressure in the atmosphere.

No count your reason, it should be worth all the difficulties of working with natural light. After all, if you struggle way further than you need to with your firing, your stress is bound to show up on film in one way or another.

2. Do a ( Nonfictional) Rain Check

Natural light is challenging to work with because it’s changeable. One moment, you ’re rephotographing on a bright sunny day; the coming, the shadows will put a mute on your shoot.

Still, try to do it on a day when the rainfall is fairly stable, If you intend to retake with natural light. Check the rainfall updates in the area where you intend to film. For illustration, if the weatherman says it ’ll be sunny throughout a specific date, you might not have to worry much about unforeseen light changes when you least anticipate them.

But if the weatherman anticipates cloudy rainfall, consider delaying the shoot. Because they ’re always moving, shadows can beget subtle lighting changes your camera might be sensitive to. The last thing you want is for your observers to get detracted by the constant changes in light on your film.

3. Consider Firing During Noon if Your Shoot Is Short

Some times of the day are better for shooting indoors than others. For illustration, if you ’re shooting near a window, the noon light shining through that window provides just enough exposure for your film. After all, the indoors are generally darker than the outside, and having the light from outside shining into a room balances effects outlight-wise.

Of course, noon lasts for only about an hour atmost.However, using noon light is fine, If you ’re only doing 5- nanosecond vids or advertisements. But if you ’re rephotographing a two-hour-long movie, you need a better plan than “ Shoot during the noon and hope the rainfall will stay fine throughout that one-hour window.”

4. Find a Position With Natural Light Suited to Your Requirements

With your DSLR camera, compass out the place where you’ll shoot. Hold the camera with the viewfinder towards you, look through the viewfinder, and move the camera sluggishly around the area. See how the light changes when you point your camera towards one corner, towards another corner,etc.However, that might be an excellent place to start rephotographing, If you find a spot that looks good no matter which angle you look at it.

It’s essential to use your camera ( rather than your naked mortal eye) when assessing the quality of light in a position. After all, your observers will be seeing your film as captured by your camera, not as you ’re seeing the scene in real life.

5. Acclimate Your Camera’s Orifice, Shutter Speed, and ISO

Your DSLR camera’s dereliction settings may not be the stylish for landing natural light. In that case, you need to be familiar with the three features that affect how your camera captures light orifice, shutter speed, and ISO.


Orifice refers to the size of the part that opens or closes around your camera’s lens. It’s measured in f- stop values, which has an inverse relationship with the quantum of light your camera lets in. In other words, the lower the f- stop value, the bigger the opening around your camera’s lens, and the more exposure to light it’ll have.

Still, try commodity between f/ 2, If you ’re doubtful what f- stop value to use for natural light.8 and f/1.8 to let in the right quantum of natural light. Alternately, if your camera has orifice precedence mode ( generally marked by “ A” or “ AV” on your camera), you can experiment with that as well. Orifice precedence mode means that your camera’s shutter speed will automatically acclimate with your orifice.

Shutter Speed

Shutter speed measures how long the shutter stays open while the camera detector is exposed tolight.However, try using a shutter speed of about1/100 to make the utmost of the light exposure, If you ’re working with bright lights outdoors. On the other hand, a slow shutter speed might look more on videotape if you ’re working with low light.


ISO measures your camera’s perceptivity to light. The advanced the ISO, the more sensitive to light your camera is.

Still, for illustration), you may want to raise your camera’s ISO, If you ’re working with low light (like on cloudy days. But if you ’re shooting on bright days when there’s acceptable light, you can have an ISO that falls between 50 and 100.

When it comes to natural light, feel free to experiment with any combination of orifice, shutter speed, and ISO. You can always acclimate the settings if you over-or under- expose your subject.

6. Use 3- Point Lighting to Your Advantage

When you ’re working with any kind of light — natural or else — it’s not just the quantum of light you need to consider. You also need to suppose about where the light is.

Imagine your subject inside a triangle, facing one of the flat edges. The three points on that triangle represent the crucial light, fill light, and backlight.

Crucial Light

The crucial light is the brightest of the three lights. As the name implies, it’s where utmost of the light shining on your subject comes from. You do n’t place it directly in front of your subject because that would beget overexposure. Rather, you put it in the northwest direction facing yoursubject.However, and it’s a sunny day, the window would be the source of your crucial light, If you ’re rephotographing near a window.

Fill Light

The thing about crucial light is, by itself, it makes your subject lookunbalanced.However, and the right side has little to no light, uncomely murk will show up on film, If a light is shone on the left side of your subject.

That’s where the filler light comes in. The filler light is generally partial as bright as and is placed in a direction contrary to the crucial light. For illustration, if the crucial light is at 4 o’clock of your subject, the filler light should be at 8 o’clock. The filler light’s purpose is to balance out the lighting in front of your subject and exclude murk beside your subject.

Still, you can use a glass as your source of filler light, If you ’re rephotographing with natural light and your crucial light is from the window. We ’ll talk further about mirrors in the coming section.


Still, your subject is going to look flat, If you only have the crucial light and fill light. To help that, you also need a backlight. As its name implies, the backlight is placed behind your subject and nearly between the crucial light and fill light. It’s occasionally called the “ hair light” because if your subject is a person, the backlight will illuminate, well, their hair.

Going back to the illustration before (where the crucial light is from the window, and the filler light is from your glass), you can use a plain white background as the backlight. That’s because the white color reflects the girding light, including that from the key and fill lights.

Combined, the crucial light, fill light, and backlight will make your subject pop on screen, minus any distracting murk or uneven lighting.

7. Use Reflectors

As noted before, you can use mirrors as filler light or just to indeed out the lighting on your subject.

Still, buy commodity like the Phottix Premium Reflector from Amazon, If you do n’t mind investing in It’s a quality glass that works well under utmost lighting conditions and may indeed have redundant handles for better mobility.

But if your budget is limited, no worries. You can use a white-multicolored marquee as a new glass, with the handle facing yoursubject.However, you can make a glass in 5 twinkles for$ 1, If you ’re comfortable with DIY stuff.50 as follows

Cut out a piece of cardboard to the size you want.

Cut out a piece of drum antipode/ aluminum antipode to a size that’s large enough for the edges to fold around your cardboard.
Vid or crop the antipode to your cardboard. Voila! Instant glass.

8. Use Diffusers

Still, the light shining on your subject may be too harsh, If you ’re rephotographing on a bright sunny day. In that case, use a light diffuser.

You can buy ready- made diffusers, like the Altura Photo Flash Diffuser Light Softbox. These tools can soften light no matter where it’s from and can be partake away in a safe place when not in use.

Alternately, you can use what’s formerly in your house — or indeed your natural terrain! A frosted shower curtain can soften the light coming into your filming position. The same goes for shadows in the sky since they cover the sun kindly.

9. Move Your Subject About a Couple of Bases From the Light

Do you know what differently you can control, away from the source and intensity of the light shining on your subject? That’s right the subject itself!

Specifically, you do n’t want your subject to be too close to any light source. Else, your subject will either be overused or have murk everyplace.

For illustration, if you ’re using a plain white background, you ’ll notice that your subject will have murk if too close to the background. But if you put about two or three bases between your subject and the backlight, the murk vanish.

10. Still, Get Help From Artificial Light Sources

If All DifferentlyFails.Okay, I ’ll admit it This part is kind of a bobby- eschewal. But if you ’ve been doing all of the below with only natural light, and you ’re still not getting the results you want, it wo n’t hurt to use artificial light..


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