Appearing on Video? Think About Additional Lighting

Appearing on Video? Think About Additional Lighting
Appearing on Video? Think About Additional Lighting

Through my portrait photography hobby, I've learned that soft, flattering lighting is good for anyone. This is especially true for people of a certain age, like me who is over 50.

Now that video conferencing at work is the norm, I set up some soft lighting at my desk. So whether I'm meeting with my team, customers, or recording podcasts like Show Me Your Setup, I try to put my best foot forward in terms of appearance.

My desk is against a wall between two windows. Larger light sources like windows provide softer, more flattering light.

I also have an LED light wand mounted to the back of my desktop, pointing down at about a 45 degree angle at my face. Over the light wand is a layer of diffusion, softening the key light. When I turn off the light wand, you can see my skin looks flatter and a little bit dull.

Additionally, my work from home space includes two Storuman lamps from Ikea. Although discontinued, each bulb is diffused with a layer of paper for soft light.

To separate my work space from my living space, I have a white curtain behind me that bounces the window and LED wand light and fills in shadows on my face.

So this is what I've done with my setup to set myself up to look decent on camera. You can definitely use standard lamps. I recommend that you have one or two in front of you, raised up a bit so the lights aren't at the same level as your face, and definitely not below your face. That's a no no because that's horror movie villain lighting. You want your lights a bit higher than your face, kind of pointing down at you. You can do a lot with windows and standard lighting. Just be prepared to move lamps around to find the most flattering look.

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Appearing on Video? Think About Additional Lighting


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