In the office, you may not think about something like lighting before dialing into a video conference, but when you’re offering consulting services through a digital video platform or if you are holding meetings with important stakeholders or potential customers, you’ll want to look your best. That’s why lighting for video conferencing and online meetings should be something you focus on. Here are some tips to help you get the most out of your calls.
Even Lighting in the Room
Mostly due to using laptop webcams with no other setup, many video conferences are poorly lit. Click To TweetEspecially if there is a window behind the subject, it can be hard to make out their face.
To avoid this being a problem, you can use a simple but highly effective lighting trick to even out the shadows on your face. All you’ll need are three shaded lamps – one placed in front of you, most likely behind the computer, one to the side of you and one slightly behind and to the opposite side.
The effect of this three lamp setup is a reduction in shadows and more even lighting on your face, making it easier for your conferencing attendee(s) to see your eyes and any facial gestures.
If you will be in a room with unshaded windows during the day, lighting quality doesn’t have to be an issue. To start, position yourself so that the window is not directly behind you. Behind your computer screen or to the side will work well because it doesn’t cast your entire face into shadows.
If the window is to the side, however, you’ll need a way to even out the light. This can be done with a reflector that you place off camera to the opposite side. Alternately, a white board or other light surface can serve as an effective alternative.
The best way to ensure lighting is not distracting during your video conference call is to take total control of it. That means:
- Closing the drapes or blinds and using only natural light if you don’t have the reflective surfaces listed above.
- Balance the source of light. A three-way lamp is very useful for this because it can be soft but not too soft as the primary light.
- Avoid overhead lights. If you have track lighting or fluorescent lights in the room you’ll be using for recording, see if you can reangle the camera so it doesn’t pick up on screen.
- Avoid glare from reflective surfaces or high light sources – such as the aforementioned overhead lights.
Ensuring Your Video Conference Calls Are as Professional as Possible
Good lighting is about more than just looking your best – it’s about conveying a professional air that showcases the quality of your work and the value of what your clients are paying for. Whether you are in a sales meeting for your business or providing advice in a 1:1 video conference with a consulting client, lighting is an important element of conveying that professionalism.