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Ingrid Weel presenting directly to camera in a screenshot of a video conference.

VIDEO CONFERENCING TIP #3: LIGHTING
(Click here to see the video)

When we attend a video conference in our home office, shed or anywhere quiet we may not have total control over the light. Often it is from a single source like a window or a desk lamp casting a shadow on the unlit side of our face.

 

A carefully placed reflector will bounce this light back into your face and balance the overall lighting, improving your appearance on screen.

You do not need a professional version unless you really want one – you can get crafty and easily make one yourself with items from around the home.

Ingrid Weel showing viewers a professional reflector

You will need:

  • a large bit of cardboard
  • Tin foil
  • Tape
  • Smaller pieces of cardboard if you are using a broken down box
  • Spray glue – if you have it!
a large bit of cardboard, smaller pieces of cardboard, Tin foil and Tape on a table Spray glue being held close to the camera

 

Assembly:

For this reflector I broke down a delivery box and reinforced the folds with some random pieces of card.

Reinforcing the folds of your broken down cardboard box by taping down other pieces of card

 

Carefully tape the tinfoil onto your card in smooth strips – DULL SIDE UP!

Use the spray glue as well if you have it and smooth down with a soft cloth.

Rolling out strips of tinfoil dull side up onto the card and scuring with tape and spray glue if you have it
Rolling out strips of tinfoil dull side up onto the card and scuring with tape and spray glue if you have it Rolling out strips of tinfoil dull side up onto the card and scuring with tape and spray glue if you have it

 

Finish the edges with more tape, folding the excess foil around to the back.

 

Using tape to finish off the edges of your reflector Folding excess foil around the back and using tape to finish off the edges of your reflector

 

Use some sturdy items from the household to stand the card upright, bottles and canned goods are ideal to stabilize your reflector.

 

A home made reflector on a table, two bottles and two tin cans
Reflector leaning against two bottles Reflector leaning against two bottles braced from the front by 2 tin cans

Look at your camera preview, and make sure your reflector is bouncing your main light source back into your face.

If your light source is overhead – position the reflector below the camera and bounce the light up into your face.
Ingrid Weel presenting to Camera with light bounced into her face.

If your light source is overhead – position the reflector below the camera and bounce the light up into your face.

Remember to position your reflector out of shot.

During a video conference the ipad is raised and perpendicular to the floor, there's an "X" over the camera and the reflecor is set to bounce the overhead light back into the speaker's face

 

Set your camera angle and to look at your mark when it is your turn to speak!

You can keep up to date with the short videos explaining these tips by following me on all my social media feeds.

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General Advice:

If you are in a communal or noisy area, and you have a headset – use it.

Your wardrobe should reflect the situation. If you are at a business meeting and you are not sure, pop a jacket on.

If you are wearing shorts, remember to stop your video feed if you need to get up for anything!

Have your branding in the background – a pop up banner is great for this!

Have a pen and notepad ready for any notes.

If you are presenting a video or slides – have them ready and be familiar with the tech to start it seamlessly – PRACTICE before the meeting.

Let everyone else in the household know you are in a meeting and suggest they all be dressed....

 
 
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