My wife is starting to make exercise videos. We set up a great location in the basement but lighting has been an issue.

She needs to be spaced pretty far away from the camera (about 10 feet in front) so her entire body is in frame. Also there is a wall directly behind her - I'm guessing a ceiling light shining down on the wall and floor will reduce shadows from the front lights?

I'm wondering what the best kind of lighting would be for this setup. I'm thinking LED but not sure how many lumens, or how large the LED panels should be etc. I looked into softboxes but from what I've seen, they are better suited for closer camera distances.

She doesn't want to spend too much on lighting at the moment, so something bright and affordable would be ideal.

EDIT: What about some long fluorescent tubes stood up vertically on both sides of the camera?

Any suggestions? Cheers.

1 Answer 1


This is hard to answer without knowing the sensitivity of your camera, the ISO, the aperture of the lens, the look of the room, etc. But most importantly, the look you want.

I don't think a flat wall directly behind her is the best background. Take a look at this search. Almost every photo has quite some distance to the background.

So. First of all, try to have some distance to the wall. Let's call the spot where she will be standing as "X"

Second. Imagine what is the things you want the viewer to see? You could have some strip LEDs on the sides of X. Are you shooting vertical? Like for TicToc? or horizontal like norma video. Do you want the strips of light to show? Do you have enough space to put them away from the frame?

The same with softboxes. Do you want a "sporty" look? Put them on the sides of X and not so bright, Do you want a happy look? Put them at 45° very bright. You can use or make a ring light for an urban look.

If you have white walls on the sides, you could use a reflector bouncing the light on them, the same as the ceiling. But bounce them far from X, so you do not have a hotspot on them.

I am sorry I can not really answer. Look for tutorials about lighting, and search for a look you like.

But here are some things that you need to take into account.

Some Led lights have low CRI, this is the colors will be dull, look for LED lights that have a CRI above 90.

You can also be creative and add gels to color some lights, a bit warmer for the background.

Do not put the lights on the sides of the camera, except on the case you want an "urban look". It is the least flattering light there is. It is just a flat light.

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