Changing the art of Chroma Key


Rod Aaron Gammons TV-Bay Magazine
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ChromaKey technology has been used for decades in TV and film studios to composite images or footage into a shot using green and blue screen backdrops. Although used on multi-million dollar movies, such as AVATAR and used all around the world in News rooms, conventional ‘Fabric’ ChromaKey technology requires Kilowatts of lighting, hours of setup time and isn’t very portable. There is however, a solution - ‘ReflecMedia’ a revolutionary ChromaKey technology, (pioneered with the BBC); which provides a cost-effective, portable ChromaKey kit for broadcasters, videographers and photographers in the studio and on location. Philip Bloom (www.philipbloom.net), Director, DP and Cinematographer recently tested out the innovative Reflecmedia ChromaKey technology;

“Reflecmedia Revolutionizes the way you can use Chroma key […] quick set up, minimum lighting and if your talent can’t get to the studio then you can bring the studio to them’.

Conventional blue or green screen fabric requires large amounts of studio lighting carefully positioned to produce enough output to evenly light the background to enable it to ‘key’ whilst additional lighting is then required to remove shadows cast by your subject or presenter, which can be an extremely time consuming process to get right. Furthermore, bouncing so much studio light off your traditional green background often creates ‘spill’ as green light bounces back onto your subject, requiring hours of post production time to remove.
Reflecmedia’s time saving solution uses a combination of a dual colour (green/blue) LED LiteRing mounted on your camera’s lens, and a unique grey Chromatte fabric which contains millions of microscopic glass beads that reflect the green or blue light directly back at the source, creating a perfect green or blue ‘Matte’ background for the camera, but without requiring any additional background lighting whatsoever, thereby eliminating hours of setup time, cost and the need to remove spill.
“Because there is no light needed for the background, shadows aren’t a problem, you don’t have to have extra lights up in the studio, so your talent wont get hot and make up doesn’t run” -Philip Bloom
Reflecmedia’s innovative range of flexible, portable, and easy to use products mean that with minimal lighting and technical expertise almost any location can be used as a virtual ChromaKey studio at a fraction of the usual costs – providing endless creative possibilities for digital content creation
ReflecMedia has been designed for quick and simple setup with the ability to transport the kit on location, event and studio shoots. Indeed their new dual colour (Blue/Green) LED LiteRing can be powered by mains or on location by a Sony camera battery for a fully portable ChromaKey solution. The intensity of the LiteRing can be controlled to ensure a perfect, evenly lit Chromakey background on any size of Chromatte drape, making sure there is no spill of light on the subject, and also ensuring the light shining from the LiteRing is at a comfortable intensity for the subject.
Reflecmedia’s instant pop up Chromaflex backgrounds are available in a range of ready to go sizes, ideal for smaller headshot, deskshot or full body Chromakey production. Chromatte drapes and BaseMattes are also available in a variety of different pre-cut or custom sizes for full length ‘floor to ceiling’ or Cyclorama ChromaKey studio installations. Reflecmedia produce a full range of cost-effective background solutions tailored to every user’s needs.
Leading broadcasters, production companies and educators around the world are now using Reflecmedia’s innovative ChromaKey technology, including BBC’s The Apprentice and feature films including Pirates of the Caribbean.
To see Reflecmedia in action with leading Director, DP and Cinematographer Philip Bloom visit (http://vimeo.com/1103172)
For more information on ReflecMedia’s unique ChromaKey products contact exclusive UK distributors Appleworld Distribution, based at Pinewood Studios on 01753 422 750 or visit www.appleworld-distribution.com. Alternatively to purchase, Reflecmedia is available from selected dealers including CVP (www.cvp.co.uk), Tetenal (www.tetenaluk.com), Visual Impact (www.visuals.co.uk) and Siren Technology (www.sirentechnology.co.uk).

Tags: iss077 | chroma key | rotolight | art | phillip bloom | reflecmedia | bbc | broadcasters | green screen | blue screen | appleworld distribution | Rod Aaron Gammons
Contributing Author Rod Aaron Gammons

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