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Learning objects Lights, camera, action: lighting

TLF ID L2846

Explore how lighting effects are used in films to tell a story. Learn words used to describe light levels and lighting effects. See how combinations of lighting can hide or reveal things, set a mood and influence audience feelings. Look at ways to create feelings such as excitement, humour or fear. For example, dim lighting makes a subject look softer and more romantic. Look at a model sequence of shots in a romance film. Notice how different views change the meaning of a scene. Choose lighting effects for a comedy or horror film. Vary the lighting levels and use effects to build a scary feeling or set up a joke. This learning object is one in a series of four objects.

Educational details

Key learning objectives
  • Students explore how film-makers use a range of lighting techniques to construct meaning and influence audience response.
  • Students identify and apply film metalanguage.
  • Students choose combinations of lighting levels and effects to enhance the telling of a story.
Educational value
  • Illustrates how lighting techniques are used to support the meaning of a story and influence audience emotions.
  • Introduces key lighting terms used in film-making and illustrates them with animations.
  • Tests understanding of lighting terminology in film-making via multiple-choice questions in a quiz.
  • Provides a model film sequence to establish lighting techniques and their effects on an audience.
  • Provides a selection of camera shots for students to assemble, review and edit to suit a chosen genre.
  • Provides feedback on the perspective and emotional impact of each camera shot via a mentor character.
  • Includes an option to print a certificate summarising key principles of using lighting in film-making.
Year level

5; 6; 7; 8

Learning area
  • english
  • English/Language
  • English/Literacy
    • English/Unfamiliar vocabulary
    • English/Visual texts
    • English/Linguistic structures and features
    • English/Sequenced texts
    • English/Text construction
    • English/Audience
    • English/Critical literacy
    • English/Multimedia texts
    • English/Feelings
    • English/Film
    • Analysis;
    • Application;
    • Comprehension;
    • Knowledge
    Student activity
    • Interactives;
    • Comprehension Activity;
    • Analysis;
    • Modelling
    Learning design
    • Experiential learning;
    • Independent learning;
    • Problem solving;
    • Visual learning

    Other details

    • Script writer
    • Name: Annemaree O'Brien
    • Address: Hawthorn VIC 3122 Australia
    • Subject matter expert
    • Name: Annemaree O'Brien
    • Address: Hawthorn VIC 3122 Australia
    • Educational validator
    • Technical implementer
    • Publisher
    • Date of contribution: 20 Sep 2013
    • Organisation: Education Services Australia
    • Address: Melbourne VIC 3000 Australia
    • URL:
    Access profile
    • Colour independence
    • Device independence
    • Hearing independence
    Learning resource type
    • Interactive Resource
    • Microsoft Internet Explorer - minimum version: 8.0 (MS-Windows) - maximum version: 9.0 (MS-Windows)
    • Firefox - minimum version: (MS-Windows)
    • Safari - minimum version: 5.1 (MacOS)
    Operating systems
    • MacOS - minimum version: 10.6
    • MS-Windows - minimum version: XP - maximum version: 7
    • © Education Services Australia Ltd, 2013, except where indicated under Acknowledgements.