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What not to wear when filming in front of a green screen

If you’ve never been filmed in front of a green screen before then it may seem like a minefield of dos and don’ts when it comes to what you can and cannot wear. However once you understand the concept behind how it all works it’s easier to understand why there are certain items of clothing that just don’t mix very well with the screen.

People use green screens when filming for TV or for film so that after they have filmed the actors, presenters or audience they can then digitally replace all areas of green from the image with a background of their choice.  Green screens are used because the colour green is not found in the pigment of our skin so all of the green can be removed from the image without affecting the image in the forefront.  If green cannot be used for some reason then a blue screen is used instead.

Here are a few things that you should avoid wearing if you are going to be filmed in front of a green screen.

Green!  - Don’t wear green if you’re going to be filmed in front of a green screen! If you do then when the green background is digitally removed from the image your body parts which are covered in the green clothing will be removed as well.

Stripes or patterns – Besides the fact that brightly coloured and patterned clothing can be very distracting; it can also cause wavy patterns or shimmers to appear on the film.  This happens because of the way the cameras and lighting capture patterns in a green screen environment, it just doesn’t work well.

Shiny clothing – Shiny clothing should not be worn for the same reason as stripes and patterns, the shine from the clothing can cause a shimmer to appear on the image.

Glasses – Glasses, especially very strong ones, can play havoc in the green room.  Different lights used to light the green screen area or on the camera can be reflected off the lenses in glasses.  It’s also possible for glasses to reflect green from the green screen, so wherever possible you should swap your glasses for contact lenses during filming.

Silver and gold jewellery – Small and subtle silver and gold jewellery doesn’t usually present any problems, but big or flashy pieces can cause light to be reflected off it or shimmers to appear in the image, so it’s best to keep jewellery minimal.

With such a long list of things not to wear you’re probably wondering what you can safely wear.  We suggest neutral or pastel colours (except pastel green!)  For ladies in particular it’s best to put some makeup on or the green room lighting can end up making you look washed out and pale.