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Grammar of the Shot, 2nd Edition by Christopher J. Bowen, Roy Thompson

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Ensure an Eye Light

We do not discuss film lighting very much in this book, but it is such a hugely important part of motion image capture that you should be studying lighting as much as possible throughout your career. Of course, we cannot incorporate all of the scientific, thematic, and artistic importance of light and lighting into this presentation so we will include this significant practice that can make a big difference in how your MS and CU shots are received by your viewing audience—the eye light.

It has been a long-standing practice in portraiture (painting, still photography, motion pictures) to include what some people call the “life light” or “eye twinkle” in your subject’s eyes. This point of light visible in the talent’s eyes causes ...

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