Green screens allow filmmakers the flexibility of using backgrounds of their choice without shooting the action on the location or enabling two actors to share the screen even when they are not physically together at the time of the shooting. There are many other advantages of the chroma keying technique but executing it well calls for a great degree of technical mastery over the process. Unfortunately, you can end up with a poor film or video if you cannot avoid some common green screen mistakes. A few examples of mistakes, inexperienced filmmakers tend to make:
Not Measuring the Set
Investing in a green screen without measuring the set can be a complete waste of good money because you need to consider the extent of movement by your actors that the movie envisages. For example, if the subject is sitting, you will need a smaller green screen than if he were crossing a road. Similarly, shot selection has an important role to play. If the subject standing or walking, you will need the green screen extended to both the sides and the floor. Moreover, make sure that the screen does not have any hard edge, especially where the walls and the floor meets.
Using a Damaged Screen
You must make sure when you are using green screen backgrounds, they are not stained, chipped, wrinkled, or torn. Even though you will be removing the green color with the chroma keying process, the damage on the screen is liable to result in shadows that can make the editing process much more difficult. It is best to inspect the green screen for signs of damage and repair them well before using. Steaming the fabric will help to get rid of the wrinkles.
Getting rid of shadows on the green screen can be painful during the post-production stage, which is why you must exercise care while setting up the screen to eliminate shadows. In addition to ensuring that the screen is undamaged, you should be certain that there is ample distance between the screen and the subjects and that your props and equipment do not obstruct your lighting. Since using a single source of strong lighting will cast shadows, you need to balance it by using multiple lights, as per Peerspace.
Forgetting To Eliminate Green in Clothing and Accessories
The process of chroma keying removes all the green pigment digitally, which is why if your actors are wearing green clothes or using green accessories, they will disappear. You must, therefore, make sure that there is nothing colored green in the foreground. If due to any reason, you need to include green objects in your film, you must switch to a blue screen, but then you have to eliminate the use of blue in the subjects.
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Using green screens is useful for filmmakers because of its multiple benefits. However, chroma-keying is complicated, which is why it is easy to make mistakes. Knowing the mistakes commonly made can help you to avoid them. A little bit of experimenting will tell you what you have to do to boost the quality of your production.