Create a cinematic reflection effect video using just your laptop screen

Post by
Jitz Lim
Create a cinematic reflection effect video using just your laptop screen

Want to add some serious drama and intrigue to your next product shoot?

You'll see from this tutorial that it is simple to achieve a professional looking cinematic effect just using basic equipment you already have at home. Even those new to videography will find it easy to capture this dramatic commercial look and impress their clients.

This technique is an especially effective way to add mood to your visual storytelling when working with brands and products.

We experimented with several different types of products from beauty to technology and found that while it was successful on most surface types the best results came from the more reflective or shiny objects.

All you'll need to film this incredible cinematic effect is your camera, tripod, laptop and something to use as a backdrop. Here's how you can achieve this eye-catching footage at home.

Set up your subject

Grab your laptop and find a suitable backdrop to place over the keyboard. We recommend using a dark backdrop to enhance the mood and highlight the reflection from the laptop screen, in this instance I used my drawing tablet.

Place your object on top of your backdrop and position your camera in place.

Play a time lapse video

Turn the laptop screen brightness to its maximum output.

Navigate to YouTube on your laptop and search for any time lapse video. Once you've found one you like play it on fullscreen mode.


Record your footage

Tilt the screen down so it lights up your subject, let the video play and hit record on the camera.

Add more drama in the edit

For even more impact you can speed your footage up even further and add a subtle zoom effect in post production.

As you can see it doesn't take much to make your product video look like a cinematic masterpiece!

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