Element Lights’ Guide to the Best Lighting For Youtube Videos

So you want to create a Youtube channel. Whether you want to do funny cat videos, a vlog about leadership, or make music videos, Element Lights has what you need to make your videos stand out. Lighting does more than just help your viewers see whatever content you produce - it also helps them focus, and allows you to highlight what you want them to see.

Even if you are just starting out as a YouTuber, there are some fundamental laws of lighting that you will need to know to give you a leg up as you start. Element Lights is not only going to show you the best lighting for Youtube but also how to light Youtube videos to perfection.

The Rules of Lighting

We will take a page from filmmakers here, and talk about the three types of lighting you should have in any video. There is a system called three-point lighting, which illuminates the subject of the video from three different angles. The three lighting points are:

  • Key light
  • Backlight
  • Fill light

Each type of light serves a purpose, and using all three together can provide some great results for your videos. The key light is the brightest type of light in your setup, as it’s the light that is directly pointed at your subject. It is the light that will create the entire mood for your video, so you need to make sure that it looks good.

Of course, if you shine a very bright light on someone, shadows are going to fill the area and ruin your shot. This is where fill lighting comes in - lighting that’s on the opposite side of the camera. The light from your fill light source helps to block out the shadows from the key light and can help to set the mood.

Finally, the backlight is light that shines behind your subject and helps to separate them from their background. It also can cause a halo or ethereal like effect on the subject to further separate them, and is often placed behind your subject, though still out of frame.

Three Points on a Budget

You can replicate these three lights with common household light sources. Typically, an overhead light is your key light, while a lamp or a window can be used as fill and backlights. Even having two out of three is enough, especially if you are streaming and sitting in front of a camera.

One of the best lighting tips for streaming is to position a lamp directly behind your gaming setup, and shining the lamp at an angle. That way the light isn’t in your eyes, but is accentuating your face and illuminating you for the camera.

Lighting Outdoors

If you are filming outdoors, then you can take advantage of the most powerful light source there is - the sun. Of course, the sun can be more of a hindrance than a help sometimes, and if you want to film outdoor Youtube vlogs or videos, you’ll need to get the amount of sunlight you use under control.

One of the best lighting tips for vlogs is to use the sun as an ally. Before you start filming your vlog, make sure to experiment. Go to the location where you will be filming during different times of the day, and during different weather conditions.

Maybe the way the sun filters through the trees at high noon is better for park shoots, but when you film in the parking lot you need to wait until the sun is low in the sky. Make sure to experiment, and make the sun work for you.

Controlling Outdoor Light

If you are having trouble with the sunlight, but can’t have any more delays in filming, there are some ways to control outdoor light. Use a large white sheet of cardboard or poster-board to absorb some of the excess light and act as a bounce-back. 

Additionally, you can use the sun as a backlight, instead of an overhead key light. It might require some maneuvering or changes to your directing, but it can produce a powerful effect.

Best Products For Lighting Videos

If you have some money to spend, you can make use of a few Element Lights products to help control and enhance both indoor and outdoor light. Some of these products include LED ring lights, such as the Element Lights 10 Inch LED Ring Light

Ring lights can easily be set up behind your camera or phone and provide some much-needed fill light. They can also be very useful for streamers and makeup tutorial influencers, allowing viewers to catch every single reaction and movement of makeup across your face.

Another product, our Desktop LED Ring Light, comes with an adjustable tripod. Rather than fiddling with a lamp or moving your body to take advantage of the light, you can control everything from the tripod. 

You can raise the light, lower it, adjust its brightness, and even swap out different rings for different colors and tones of light.

Making your Videos Shine Bright

No matter what type of Youtube content you are putting out into the world, you will need to have proper lighting. After all, you can’t expect to have good videos if no one can see what you are doing or focus on what you are talking about. 

Even if you are just streaming and letting your video game take up most of the space, if you are showing your face, you still need to focus on your light.  Element Lights has the tips and products you need to supercharge your content.

Using simple tricks like the three-point lighting system can help you bring focus, change the mood of your audience, and help you set the tone for what your video is about. It’s understandable to want to get right into filming what you love, but don’t skimp on the lighting. It might not seem flashy, but it’s one of the most important things you can do for you content!