5 Ways To Use DMG DASH™ To Light A Short Film

Quand le Village s'endort (When The Village Falls Asleep) is a fake trailer of an imaginary film inspired by the famous card game “Les Loups-Garous de Thiercelieux” (The Werewolves of Miller's Hollow). Director Simon Grass and Cinematographer Mehdi Natech created this short film for the 11th edition of the Nikon Film Festival.

The filmmakers used Rosco’s new DMG DASH Pocket LED Kit to evoke different emotional responses in their project. Below, Simon and Mehdi share how they used the light to create tension, intrigue, and suspense. You can use this versatile fixture to execute the same filmmaking techniques the next time you need to light a short film.


#1 Uplight For Intrigue

Light short filmClick/tap to view a larger image.


In the opening shots of the film, we see a young man sneaking into a room with his back to the camera. The filmmakers placed the battery-powered DMG DASH with a Dome Diffuser on the table to uplight the wall and highlight the actor’s silhouette. A few moments later, we see a closeup of the actor’s face – uplit by the DASH – which creates a sense of intrigue in the scene.


#2 Add Light & Shadow For Suspense

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Simon and Mehdi used their DMG DASH with the half-dome DOT Round Diffuser Accessory to illuminate an actor’s face as he is dragged into the darkness. Held in one hand near the ground, the fixture added just the right amount of light. When outfitted with a DOT, the light output of the DMG DASH has a sharp falloff. The DOT kept the light from bleeding into the background. This preserved the darkness behind the actor, enabling him to disappear into the shadows more effectively in this suspenseful setting.


#3 Create Practicals

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In the next scene, we actually see a DMG DASH in the frame. The filmmakers mounted two DASH units onto the wooden grid ceiling to illuminate the scene. One DASH created a cool, cyan-colored light in the background. The other DASH was again outfitted with a DOT Round Diffuser and set to a warm/incandescent setting. This DASH worked as an onscreen practical to create an overhead house light glowing in the background of the scene.


#4 Capture The Glint In An Actor’s Eye

Light short filmClick/tap to view a larger image.

Click/tap to view a larger image.

Later in the film, an actor is seen adding a mysterious substance to a glass of wine. That shot is followed by a closeup of the same actor with a diabolical glint in her eye. The DMG DASH with the DOT Round Diffuser is perfect for creating that style of eye light. The DOT quickly attaches to the DASH via magnets. This enabled Simon and Mehdi to easily place light reflections in the actors’ eyes. They used this technique in several scenes to highlight a variety of different emotions.


#5 Create Light Where It’s Needed

Light short filmClick/tap to view a larger image.

Press play to see the results of the lighting setup.

Simon and Mehdi wanted to add just a hint of light into one of the final scenes. In order to achieve this, they attached both the Flat Diffuser and the Eggcrate from their Pocket LED Kit onto the DASH. By taking the light in hand, they were able to find the perfect distance and angle to add a subtle, directional light into the frame. Using this technique, they were able to illuminate the actors’ faces without spoiling the shadowy tension of the scene.


Click/tap to learn more about DMG DASH.

Thanks to Simon Grass and Mehdi Natech for sharing their wonderful work with us. To learn more about these two filmmakers and see more examples of their work, you can visit their websites:
Simon Grass: simongrass.fr
Mehdi Natech: mehdinatech.com

If you are about to light a short film and would like to learn more about our new DMG DASH Pocket LED Kit, please visit dash.rosco.com.


Tatiana Massano July 28, 2021 Questions?

About Tatiana Massano

Content Marketing Specialist: Based in the Madrid office, Tatiana is ideally positioned to share inspiring stories of how customers use Rosco products to accomplish their ideas in Europe, the Middle East and Africa.