The Video 
Production Site


Grip and Lighting Illustrated Dictionary for Film and Video Production

K - Kelvin through Kliegl

Intro  A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z


Kelvin color temperature - is a numbered scale of degrees used to name the place in the spectrum a particular light source emits light in. Video cameras can be set to the dominant color temperature of a lighting setup or source, and film stocks are generally set for two distinct color temperatures (3200K and 5600K).

Light sources used in film and video production are usually "tungsten balanced" 3200K (not to be confused with household tungsten bulbs which are more in the 2600 to 2800K range) or "daylight balanced" 5600K. The lower the number, the "redder", the higher the number the "bluer" the light is when recorded by video sensors and film stocks.. An example of how this all matters in video production is: a camera set for 3200K tungsten would see household tungsten light (2600K or so) as having "more orange" or warmer look in the image. 5600K daylight would have a blue tinge or cast with the camera or film stock set for 3200K.

Key Grip - key as in main, top, head of the grips on a film/video production crew. The key grip is involved in and oversees moving equipment, rigging, light diffusion and control devices (flags, nets, silks, etc. on grip stands), reflectors and much, much more.

Keylight - is the dominant or main light in a video/film lighting setup. In most simple outdoor setups, the keylight would be the sun, of course, but not always! You might have the sun go behind a building, or things go long and the day is fading. So you pull out a big honkin' 12 or 18K, to act as the "sun" and it would then be the keylight.

Kicker (aka kick) - a backlight offset enough (3/4 or 45 degree angle approximately)  to brush around the front of the subject. For example, a kicker would backlight an actors head, as well as brush around over the cheekbone and jawline a bit.

Kill switch - the "master off" control for a generator or power distribution box.

Kino-Flo - is a type of light by the company of the same name which uses color balanced/enhanced flourescent tubes. Kinos are great for soft light and have many sizes and intensities to choose from. They generate a lot less heat than a tungsten or HMI light source, and have become a commonly found and used light source on location and studio shoots.

Klieg (or Kliegl) light - an intensely bright white carbon-arc light used mostly in earlier eras of movie production. Two carbon rods are almost tip to tip, then electric current is applied, causing a "flame" or arc, in the gap. The gap has to be set fairly precisely for the arc to occur, and must be maintained as the rods burn away to keep the tips the same distance apart. Named for the inventors, brothers John and Anton Kliegl. The name is used somewhat commonly as a metaphor for putting something under intense scrutiny or up in the glare of public view. Hollywood premier-type searchlights are Klieg lights.


Contacts     Privacy Policy

All brand, company, website and product names listed on this site are the property of the respective companies, persons or other entities listed or named. Directory listings and other references do not imply endorsement of by the respective named entities, or vice versa. All other site contents are the copyrighted property of, 2009-2014. All rights reserved.