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Exploring Greenscreen

In this course we covered the basics of working with green screen, how to setup lightning, camera and how to work with footage to get clean result afterwards.

Greenscreen Setup

The video studio 001 can be easily transformed into greenscreen studio by taking out the green blocks, carpet from the backroom and allows easily to shoot the full body scenes.

What to keep in mind:

  1. Stretch out and fix the green cloth on the top end with laces. You can use the big ladder to fix it but preferably with another person for safety reasons.
  2. Make sure that the green screen is clean, has no spots and no visible wrinkles. Wrinkles are the worst nightmare since the green color will be different and may cause worst result by keying it on computer.
  3. If possible use computer display that is connected to your camera and gives you big picture of a scene.




Lightning is essential part when you have to shoot with the green background.

Here are some rules that helped us during our project and are easy to follow:

  1. Make you familiar with the studio’s equipment: Arri Light, Light Control Panel.
  2. First lit the green background and then your subject.
  3. The green background should be lit consistent as possible. Look into your camera and if you see dark spots, edges, add more light on the background.
  4. Use the exact the same lights on either side of the green screen for the sake of consistency.


Now when your background is lit consistent, you can light your subject. 

In general, your subject, should be about eight feet away from the green screen to avoid green halo on the skin.

To light them, you’re going to need the following lights.

  1. Key light: The key light is the predominant light source for the subject. It should match wherever the light source (i.e. the sun, other lights in a building) would naturally be.
  2. Back light: The back light creates a soft halo effect in the subject’s hair. Mostly used when the subject should be in a studio setting. This can be adjusted on studio’s Control Panel.
  3. Fill light: The fill light creates ambiance within the scene and helps soften shadows created by the key light.

Screenshot 2021-10-15 at 10.57.37.pngScreenshot 2021-10-15 at 10.57.37.png

Camera Settings

As you play around with your camera’s settings, you can follow this easy steps to setup your DSLR for video recording:

Setting 1. Video Resolution

Most cameras have a few different resolution options to choose from, including:

• 320x240p

• 720x480p

• 1280x720p

• 1920x1080p

• 3840x2160p (AKA 4K)

Setting 2. Frame Rate

The next setting to focus on is the camera’s frame rate, which is measured in frames per second (FPS). Your video is a sum of taken images per second.

If you want to go for a more cinematic look, you might consider lowering the frame rate to 24 FPS or 25 FPS.

For slow motion video choose higher frame rate (50 or 60 FPS) and slow it down in video editing software.

By choosing frame rare you will very likely face PAL and NTSC settings in your camera. PAL - is user for the most of European countries (Germany including). NTSC - is for USA, Japan.

The main difference is in the refresh rates between the two systems and is very much less pronounced. PAL vs NTSC

Setting 3: Shutter Speed
When deciding your shutter speed for video, use this general rule: double your frame rate. If you're shooting at 24 FPS, your shutter speed should be 1/48 (rounded up on the DSLR to 1/50). If you're shooting at 60 FPS, your shutter speed should be 1/120.


Setting 4: Aperture
Adjusting your aperture means adjusting the opening in the camera lens to increase or reduce the amount of light in the shot. You can think of it like the human pupil; a larger pupil means more light is let into the eye.

Widening the lens opening – or decreasing the aperture – creates more light in the shot, while reducing its size – or increasing the aperture – creates a darker shot.

Wide opened aperture will have more focus on your subject and reduce details on green screen. If it has wrinkles, they will be less visible on video.


Setting 5: ISO
Piecing together your shutter speed, aperture, and our next setting, ISO, is what truly dictates the brightness of your shot. The main difference between photography and video mode on DSLR's is the minimum available ISO – 400-500.


Setting 6: Color Profile
The picture style of your camera mainly controls the contrast and saturation of your recorded video. Similar to photography RAW format, you have more control and options to adjust shadows, highlights and nicely color correct your footage.

For Canon DSLR you can adjust following:

Style: Neutral (even better is third part CineStyle)
Sharpness: 0, Contrast: -4, Saturation: -2, Color Tone: 0

And here you can explore it in more details:
DSLR Picture Styles Explained
Which Picture Profile Is Best?
Prolost Flat

Setting 7: Focus Mode
You can choose between manual focus or autofocus during video shooting. Modern cameras have pretty good face detection autofocus function on board and you can use this during your shooting. 

You can also first do an autofocus on your subject but then freeze it by switching to manual mode.

Setting 8: White Balance

White balance, or color temperature, is another setting that can drastically change the look and feel of the shot.

Use the white balance card or simply black piece of white paper to make shot of it and setup your camera properly.

Using A White Balance Card For The First Time
White Card vs Gray Card

Setting 9: ND Filter

When shooting with green screen outside on daylight your picture will be probably overexposed, for this reason a ND Filter for your camera lens will improve the image. The Neutral Density filter works like a sunglass for a camera sensor and reduces the light intensity on it.

ND Filters? What are they?

Hands On

After getting familiar with the camera and lightning setup we could finally do our first hands on project. Here is our first attempt with green screen shooting and work with keylight to remove the green background from the video.

As an introduction for green screen keying we found these tutorials extremely helpful and on point:

Green Screen Keying with Keylight Part I
Background Light Wrap Tutorial Part II

We also tried to implement a basketball with a head, but it seemed to us that it was too easy and simple and this led us to our final course project.

Course Project

From the very beginning we decided to intergrade 3D environment into our footage and this was the starting point for our project. 

Also we planed ahead and prepared short storyboard for our video. It helped us a lot during shooting day and modelling the 3D environment including light conditions for the story.

In addition answering following questions before shooting gave us a clear image and make output footage consistent:

  • What is the light angle in your scenes?

  • Is the light cold, warm or you have multiple colors in your scene?

  • Where is your subject located regarding the light source: in front, backwards, sidewise?

Additionally, we designed a concept of a mobile app and tracked it in After Effects with Mocha AE Plugin. 

Tracking in Mocha

Another learning in this course was tracking in Mocha. Since we had a screen of a smartphone we had to replace the greenscreen there with real designs and track it to feel more realistic. 

Tracking may appear complex on the first look, but here is a collection of helpful tutorials that will make a process easier and faster:

Top 6 Mocha Mistakes
Mocha AE Plugin for beginners
How to use Rotobrush
Green screen composing and color matching (timelapse video)


Also, a very important task was:

  • Model the room so that it is not loaded with the interior.
  • Texturing the room and interior and car.
  • Breaking down the wall
  • Interaction of destroyed wall particles with the environment.
  • Creating the right lighting
  • Positioning cameras.
  • Animation of the car.
  • Observance of the number of polygons in the scene.
  • Relatively fast rendering.

Texturing was done through Redshift Materials.

Working with modeling and 3D environment Cinema 4D.

The destruction of the wall occurs through the Voronoi Fracture function. (additional functions like (Dynamics Body Expression, Morgraph Seletion Expression)

Render Redshift.



Final Video

For the final version we redefined the storyline, made color grading, and also added sound effects to make the story livelier. Enjoy!


We are both excited about the process and results of this course! We want to thank everyone who participated and supported us during those days and gave insights into this field!

Special thanks goes to Hyangbok and Christian who were very kind and helped us during the shooting day 🎬


Perspektiven und Social Skills

Art des Projekts

Keine Angabe


foto: Jan Schütze

Zugehöriger Workspace

Exploring Greenscreen.


Wintersemester 2021 / 2022