By Frank Schabell > Lead Lighting Design at Pro Church Lights
80% of churches we chat with are missing the basics of producing a great quality livestream video – because they are missing the #1 BASIC ITEM – Light.
Getting a professional looking live stream is less about the camera and more about the lighting.
So… are you missing the basics needed to create a quality live stream for your church?
If so – it’s not that difficult to get it right… Simply get 1, 2 or all of these 3 lighting elements listed below in place – and you’ll be on your way to producing a high-quality live stream that your congregation will appreciate.
The Key Elements to a High Quality Live Stream At Your Church Are:
#1 Front Wash Light
#2 Rear Kick / Back Light
#3 Background Light…..
Implement 1, 2 or 3 of these foundational lighting elements and you’ll provide your live stream congregation a more distraction free, engaging, high quality live stream instantly.
Watch this short video for a full explanation about all of the content in this post. Watch Now: Church Lighting – Improve Your Church Live Stream Lighting
As with most churches around the nation and world – 2020 and 2021 was the crash course in live stream setup. It was do or die essentially. If you’ve invested in your live stream but left lighting on the side-line, you should highly prioritize your lighting goals in 2022. Lighting is the #1 thing that will improve your live stream. You can have the best camera, switcher and video setup in the world – but with incorrect light fixtures or simply not enough light – your live stream will always be distracting with low light levels, shadows, grain and poor image quality. Get your lighting right and increase your live stream quality instantly!
If you don’t have ANY fixtures pointing at the stage – this should be your #1 priority. Without any dedicated lights aimed towards the stage, your live stream will suffer indefinitely. Remember…lighting is the foundation of any great photo or video. So without dedicated lights pointed towards the stage – your camera will constantly struggle to produce a quality image.
For your front wash, you should utilize White LED Fresnel or White LED Ellipsoidal style fixtures. These fixtures produce the softest, whitest light with maximum beam control. Using the correct fixture is very important. A Philips screw-driver can’t do the job of a Flat-head screw driver – they were both built for their specific tasks. The same is true in lighting. To achieve great light, you need to use the correct tools for the job. When you do this you will reduce shadows, produce pure whites and keep light off your screen and areas you don’t want it. Stay away from pixel style LED lights or low quality lights typically found on Amazon.
If you have a limited budget – prioritize dollars towards creating a solid front wash foundation before anything else.
Backlight or Rear Kick Light should be your #2 priority after a solid front wash foundation is installed. Adding rear kick will instantly take your live stream to a whole new level. This is one of the easiest and usually most budget friendly area’s to implement. Add kick light, and you will add dimension to people on camera as the light outlines their body. Rear kick also fills in areas that the front wash can not.
Utilizing a lighting fixture that produces soft light as well as color is best fit for this lighting position. Barn doors are recommended to keep light from hitting the front rows of seats.
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Once you implement #1 and #2 (front wash and kick light) – background light should be your #3 priority to put into place. Background light comes in many forms. Examples include LED tape, LED wall wash bars, lit set pieces and beam style fixtures with haze to name a few.
Background light is sometimes the most complicated piece as there are so many options. Experiment, look at pictures for inspiration and most importantly just implement something! You can always adjust it later.
If you’d like help putting together a live stream lighting package – good news, we have some pre-built lighting packages made for you.
In the guide you’ll get foundational tips for improving your live stream lighting. You’ll also get pricing on our top 2 fixtures that take all of the guesswork out of choosing a correct light fixture for your live stream!