Dressing for a green screen

Green screen filming (sometimes called Chroma key) is becoming more and more common – and at Big Ant we do a lot of mobile shoots at business premises.

The rules for dressing for a green screen shoot are very simple:

  • Don’t wear green
  • Don’t wear a print with narrow lines
  • Steer clear of busy small patterns with intricate detail
  • Don’t wear clothing with reflective content
  • Don’t apply shiny / shimmery makeup
  • Avoid sparkly / shiny jewellery
  • Wear black sparingly (ie not a solid black suit)
  • Avoid pure white clothing
  • If you have really frizzy hair – try to tie it back in a bun

Because of the emergence of UHD (Ultra High Definition) video, all the issues above (apart from wearing green) are less of a problem than they used to be, but it still pays to wear fairly neutral clothing.

Also – when filming in an office, it is harder to get the lighting as even as in a professional studio, so it really helps if hair is slicked back more – makes the process of removing the green content much easier.

The reason for the lack of reflective material is it will reflect the green – and any green will be removed – which potentially leaves holes in either you(!) or your clothing/jewellery.

On big budget productions they will animate a mask around objects like that so you can get away with it, but on most low cost business shoots where economics are at play this is not an option.

Finally if you the business are providing a room for a green screen shoot – it is very important that the room can have controlled lighting (either effective curtains or blinds, or preferably no windows) and that it is quiet.

This is because unlike real life where actions visible around you explain changes in lighting and background noise, when using the green screen footage you may be placed into an environment where sudden bursts of sunlight / background chatter are completely out of context!