The Rev. John Jackman explains what "hard" and "soft" light is and how and when you should use each one.
"Another thing to keep in mind is that this is not an either-or decision, but sometimes a both-and option. When lighting a set, you may need the principal sources to be hard lights to reach across the required area. However, when you move the camera in for a close-up, the lighting must be optimized for the face, not for the entire room. That's when you might bring in a soft bank to punch up the lighting on the face, even though in a master shot of the whole set, the subject's face is lighted by hard light."
DV - Hard or Soft Light?
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