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The best 4K camera for filmmaking in 2022 for photographers & videographers

best 4k camera
(Image credit: @Sirisvisual for Unsplash)

Before you invest in the best 4K camera for video, you'll need to think about what type of content you want to shoot. Whether you're looking for a camera that shoots high-quality stills and 4K video or you're a filmmaker looking for a video focused camera, our list includes the best of both worlds. 

In this guide we generally concentrate on regular interchangeable lens cameras that also offer strong 4K video capture capabilities. These cameras are ideal for photographers who are moving into video, or for filmmakers who don't want or need dedicated cinema cameras, and all the expense and technical complexity that goes into them.

We've recently updated this buying guide to include four important new cameras; the Panasonic GH6 (opens in new tab), Sony A7 IV (opens in new tab), the Canon EOS R10 (opens in new tab) and Canon EOS R7 (opens in new tab)

The world of video is becoming incredibly diverse. If you think this guide doesn't describe what you're looking for, why don't you take a look at these instead:

Best cinema cameras (opens in new tab): for professional filmmakers and studios
Best vlogging cameras (opens in new tab): for independent content creators
Best camera for film students (opens in new tab): powerful and affordable cameras to start with
Best DSLR for video (opens in new tab): traditional interchangeable lens cameras for video & stills
Best action cameras (opens in new tab): for filming adventures and action
Best 360 cameras (opens in new tab): for cutting edge filming and VR techniques
Best drones (opens in new tab): for aerial photography specialists

Below you'll find our best picks in the rapidly growing list of hybrid stills/video cameras that can handle all types of content creation. This is where all the action is happening at the moment, as mirrorless cameras move upmarket and start to eat into the territory of professional cinema cameras – at a fraction of the price.

These days, mirrorless cameras have such amazing 4K capabilities that they can really challenge professional cinema cameras. The powerful Panasonic S1H and the remarkable Panasonic S5 are two cameras paving the way for 4K-ready mirrorless cameras. If you want even more resolution, the Canon EOS R5 and the Sony A1 are now capable of shooting in 8K which while it sounds great on paper, is probably a bit overkill for most vloggers, commercial photographers and filmmakers. 

For most scenarios, a camera that shoots decent 4K video is more important than one that shoots at higher resolutions due to the massive file sizes and processing power needed to edit them. Let's not forget that these videos also take a very long time to transfer and share!

The Sony A7S III offers incredible 4K footage but as it only shoots 12MP stills, the file sizes are comparatively small. This is the opposite of the Canon in terms of specs but many would consider it to be the best mirrorless 4K camera on the market!

 Don't know bitrates from framerates?: Video jargon explained (opens in new tab)

The best 4K cameras for video in 2022

Stills and video

In this section we list the best 'hybrid' cameras – fully functional stills cameras that can also capture 4K video at a professional level. These are cameras that are split 50:50 between stills and video (all right, some may be 60:40!) for photographers, videographers and content creators who need to capture both.

(Image credit: Adam Duckworth)
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If you're on a budget and need something that takes excellent stills and video, the S5 in a winner

Specifications

Type: Mirrorless
Sensor: Full frame
Sensor resolution: 24.2MP
Lens mount: L-mount
4K frame rates: 60, 50, 30, 25, 24p
4K sensor crop factor: 1x
Standard ISO range: Dual Native ISO, 100-51,200
Memory cards: 2x SD/SDHC/SDXC (1 UHS II, 1UHS I)

Reasons to buy

+
Best in-class video performance
+
Compact full-frame quality
+
Magnesium frame and vari-angle screen
+
Dual SD card slots

Reasons to avoid

-
Only Contrast AF

The Panasonic S5 comes a very very close second to the Fujifilm X-T4 with its impressive video and photo capabilities. In fact, as far as full-frame cameras go, this is probably the best value you can get. It benefits from a smaller build than the Panasonic S1 but uses the same 24-megapixel CMOS sensor. It's autofocus has been improved, it features a tough, weather-resistant body and has 6.5 stops of in-body stabilization so that even handheld video is smooth. It's capable of recording 4K vieo at 60p, 4:2:0 10-bit internally with an APS-C crop or 4K at 30p 4:2:2 using the entire sensor. 

For stills photographers, it offers a high-resolution shooting mode that combines 8 shots into a 96MP image resulting in raw files that are 165Mb in size. The Lumic S1 and the Lumix S1H might've been Panasonic's first leap into full-frame mirrorless cameras but we think the Lumix S5 is much more exciting - especially for the price. The one downside is that it uses contrast-detect AF rather than phase-detect AF which is what the Sony A7 III and Canon EOS R6 use but there are lots of features that make it a great choice for shooting 4K video.

(Image credit: Rod Lawton/Digital Camera World)
One of the best APS-C cameras on the market proves you don't need to shoot full-frame

Specifications

Type: Mirrorless
Sensor: APS-C
Megapixels: 26.1MP
Lens mount: Fujifilm X
Screen: 3in articulating touchscreen, 1,620k dots
Viewfinder: EVF, 3.69 million dots
Max continuous shooting speed: 30/15fps
Max video resolution: 4K
User level: Expert/professional

Reasons to buy

+
6.5-stop in-body stabilisation
+
4K video at up to 60/50p
+
High-speed shooting

Reasons to avoid

-
New and expensive
-
Autofocus can be twitchy

As far as APS-C sensor cameras go, the Fujifilm X-T4 is up there with the best. It offers advanced video capabilities such as 4K at up to 60P which will give you a smooth, 2x slow-motion effect. It can also capture 10-bit video internally whereas most 4K cameras only capture 8 bit. If you connect it to an external monitor, the Fujifilm X-T4 is also capable of saving video at 10-bit 4:2:2 which means it can detect way more replicate colors more accurately than when shooting at 4:2:0. The Fujifilm X-T4 is the first camera in Fujifilm's X series to benefit from in-body stabilization which not only reduces or eliminates the need for a gimbal, it means you can shoot at a much slower shutter speed when in low light environments. Its fully articulated screen makes it perfect for shooting from the hip or shooting overhead and when you're not using it, it can be flipped in on itself so that the screen is protected. Even though the X-T4 uses a phase-detect auto focus system, it has been known to 'hunt' occasionally but we still think this is a great value, all-rounder camera.

Best video editing sofware (opens in new tab) for vloggers and filmmakers

(Image credit: Rod Lawton/Digital Camera World)
Aimed specifically at vloggers, the ZV-E10 is compact and affordable

Specifications

Type: Mirrorless
Sensor: APS-C CMOS
Megapixels: 24.2MP
Lens mount: Sony E
Screen: 7.5cm TFT screen
Weight : 346g
Max continuous shooting speed: 11fps
Max video resolution: 4K

Reasons to buy

+
Compact size
+
Fully articulated screen
+
Affordable

Reasons to avoid

-
No viewfinder
-
No in-body stabilization
-
No mode dial

The Sony ZV-E10 is Sony's latest APS-C camera release, offering 4K video, a 24.2MP sensor and 11fps in continuous burst mode. It's more compact than the A6000 range and unlike the Sony ZV-1, it has an interchangeable lens mount with more than 60 lenses to choose from. It's the first Sony APS-C camera with a fully adjustable variety-angle screen which is a big advantage for filmmakers. It features a 3-capsule direction mic on top of the camera, which you can attach a clip-on wind muffler to ut also has an external mic port. If you're a stills photographer the lack of a viewfinder might be a drawback but for anyone who wants to primarily vlog or shoot video, it shouldn't be an issue.

(Image credit: James Artaius / Digital Camera World)
Forget 4K, the Canon EOS R5 outputs astonishing 8K and the stills are beautiful

Specifications

Type: Mirrorless
Sensor: Full frame
Megapixels: 45
Lens mount: Canon RF
Monitor: 3.15-inch vari-angle touchscreen, 2,100k dots
Viewfinder: OLED EVF, 5,690k dots, 100% coverage, 0.76x magnification
Max continuous shooting speed: 12fps mechanical shutter, 20fps electronic
Max video resolution: 8K
User level: Professional

Reasons to buy

+
Best AF on the market
+
Best full-frame IBIS
+
8K video is astounding

Reasons to avoid

-
Video recording limitations
-
Standard 4K is just okay

When Canon released the Canon EOS R5, it paved the way for the future of mirrorless cameras. With a 45MP sensor, 20fps burst shooting and super-fast autofocus, as far as a stills camera goes it's hard to beat. Then we get to its video capabilities which again are pretty impressive. Despite the bad rep it has received for overheating when recording 8K video the Canon EOS R5 is still a landmark camera. Canon has since released firmware updates that help with the overheating issue but haven't solved it completely. It's also worth noting that the camera will only overheat when recording continuously for more than 20 - 25 minutes. If you're recording lots of short clips you shouldn't experience overheating issues. If it wasn't for the high price point, the Canon EOS R5 would've taken the top spot on our list. When you also factor in how expensive some of the best Canon RF lenses (opens in new tab) you're looking at spending thousands to get a complete video set up. 

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Now with two card slots, the Z6 II delivers uncropped 4K 30p video and fast AF

Specifications

Type: Mirrorless
Sensor: Full frame CMOS
Megapixels: 24.5MP
Monitor: 3.2-inch tilting touchscreen, 2100k dots
Continuous shooting speed: 14fps
Viewfinder: EVF, 3,690k dots, 100% coverage
Max video resolution: 4K UHD at 30p (60p via update)
User level: Enthusiast/Professional

Reasons to buy

+
Two memory card slots
+
Improved burst shooting
+
Superior AF performance

Reasons to avoid

-
No articulating screen
-
4K 60p will be cropped

The Nikon Z6 II is a light refresh of the original Z6, with a second memory card and processor bringing a bump to burst shooting, now up to 14fps, and the promise of 4K 60p video via an update. However, 60p video is cropped and the camera still lacks an articulating screen, limiting its appeal for video and vlogging. Existing Z6 owners won't see a need to upgrade, but new buyers will get a very capable camera at a pretty good price. The dual card slots are a definite plus point, Nikon's in-body stabilization is very good, and the best Nikon Z lenses (opens in new tab) are some of the best on the market right now.

(Image credit: Jon Devo)
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The long-awaited GH6 offers staggering video specifications but can shoot pretty great stills too

Specifications

Type: CSC
Sensor: Micro Four Thirds
Megapixels: 25.2MP
Screen: 3-inch vari-angle touchscreen, 1.84m dots
Viewfinder: 3.86m dot OLED, 100% coverage
Lens: Micro Four Thirds
Continuous shooting speed: 14fps with AFS, 8fps with AFC + Live View
Max video resolution: 5.7K
User level: Professional

Reasons to buy

+
Shoots 5.7K at 60p
+
Impressive choice of codecs
+
25MP stills

Reasons to avoid

-
No Raw video internally
-
Quite chunky for a MFT system

Good things come to those who wait is the phrase that comes to mind when I think of the Panasonic GH6. It had pretty big boots to fill following the popular Panasonic GH5 (opens in new tab)which still is regarded as one of the best value options for shooting video. However, the GH6 is an improvement in just about every way. It has a brand new 25.2MP sensor, it can shoot 4K at 120p or a staggering 5.7K at 60p. There was hope it would be able to shoot in-camera RAW thanks to the brand new stacked MFT sensor and CFExpress Type B storage but sadly it's not the case. 

For those looking to shoot stills, Panasonic decided to stick with its DFD (Depth From Defocus) contrast AF system which is super fast and effective. From what we've soon so far, the image quality is very good, it can shoot up to 75fps in burse mode (when using the electronic shutter and AFS) although this is reduced to 8fps when shooting with continuous AF. The body is very big for a Micro Four Thirds camera - it's even bigger than some of the Sony A7 bodies however, the lenses are still much more compact and there's loads to choose from. All in all, the GH6 is incredibly impressive and while the starting price point is pretty high but it's still cheaper than the Sony A7S III and it has 5.7K capture and 25MP stills.

Read more: Panasonic GH6 initial review

Sony A7 IV

(Image credit: Rod Lawton/Digital Camera World)
It's a real powerhouse for both stills and video

Specifications

Sensor:: 33MP Full-frame
4K frame rates:: 30p full width
4K sensor crop factor:: 4K 60p Super35 crop
ISO range:: 100 to 51,200 (exp. 204,800 stills, 102,400 video)
Memory cards: : 1x CFexpress Type A/SD UHS-II, 1x SD UHS-II

Reasons to buy

+
Unprecedented buffer capacity
+
10-bit 4:2:2 video and 4K 60p
+
Super-responsive AF
+
Extensive external controls

Reasons to avoid

-
Priced for semi-pros, not beginners
-
Needs a fast card(s)
-
Cropped S&Q mode

Traditionally, the Sony A7 has been the range’s entry-level camera, with the ‘R’ models adding resolution and the ’S’ models adding speed/sensitivity. But there’s nothing ordinary about the Sony A7 IV, and while it does supersede the A7 III, it’s an altogether more advanced camera that, we think, targets a higher-level audience. It’s more like a mini-A1 that’s terrifyingly good at everything but less than half the price. Stills photographers can revel in its 33MP resolution and incredible burst mode, while videographers get a camera that leaves the previous A7 III far behind. Its 10-bit 4:2:2 capture makes the Sony S-Log3 mode much more useful for color grading later, and while the 4K 60p capture does mean switching to Super35 crop mode, the A7 III couldn’t do 4K 60p at all (come to that, 4K 30p comes with a 1.2x crop factor on that camera, and only 25/24p 4K is full width).

(Image credit: Rod Lawton/Digital Camera World)
A compact full-frame camera with excellent AF and 4K 30p video

Specifications

Type: Mirrorless
Sensor: Full Frame
Megapixels: 24.2MP
Lens: Sony E mount
LCD: 3-inch vari-angle touchscreen, 921k dots
Viewfinder: EVF, 2,359k dots
Maximum continuous shooting speed: 10fps, 115 raw, 223 JPEG
Max video resolution: 4K 30p
User level: Enthusiast

Reasons to buy

+
Small(ish) body
+
Side-hinged vari-angle screen

Reasons to avoid

-
Unambitious video specs
-
Unappealing silver and black finish
-
Not especially cheap

The Sony A7C's specifications are unambitious to say the least, particularly in terms of its video capabilities, but its practical performance, from its handy vari-angle screen to its excellent AF system, make very effective. But why have we included this and not the mighty Sony A1? Because the A7C does the right job at the right price, where the A1 is overkill for most users. We will leave it to you to decide if the silver  A7C's two-tone design is appealing, but for us it does not have the quality ‘feel’ of the other A7 models. With that new 28-60mm retracting lens, the A7C is also compact. The main thing for video shooters is the very useful vari-angle screen, the in-body stabilization and Sony's superb autofocus system.

Read more: Sony A7C review (opens in new tab)

Canon EOS R10

(Image credit: Canon)
Is this the ultimate enthusiast camera?

Specifications

Sensor: 24.2MP APS-C
Image processor: Digic X
Mount: Canon RF
Max video resolution: 4K 60p, 4K 30p (oversampled 6K), 1080p 120p

Reasons to buy

+
Pro-grade autofocus
+
Pro-grade burst shooting
+
4K 60p and 1080p 120p

Reasons to avoid

-
No in-body stabilization
-
4K 60p is cropped
-
No weather sealing

The Canon EOS R10 (opens in new tab) – with professional-level autofocus and speed, 4K 60p imaging and 120p slow-motion at 1080p – offers performance that punches well above its weight class. The R10 can capture 4K 60p, though this invokes a 64% crop (giving a frame similar to Super 35), and can capture 4K 30p oversampled from 6K, along with 1080p at 120p for slow-motion. Canon claims around 60 minutes of this kind of high-intensity shooting before overheating / recording limits kick in. It seems churlish to bristle at the lack of in-body image stabilization or the crop at 4K 60p, but those are really the only drawbacks to what is a fantastic APS-C body for hybrid shooting among today's best hybrid cameras (opens in new tab). The camera also includes a microphone jack, which complements the fully articulating touchscreen to make it vlogging and video-friendly.

(Image credit: Canon)
This APS-C camera combines unparalleled speed and resolution

Specifications

Sensor: 32.5MP APS-C
Image processor: Digic X
Mount: Canon RF
AF zones: 651 Dual Pixel CMOS AF II divisions
ISO range: 100 to 32,000 (exp to 51,200)
Image stabilization: 5-axis IBIS up to 8 stops
Max image size: 6.960 x 4,640
Max video resolution: 4K 60p, 4K 30p (oversampled 7K), 1080p 120p

Reasons to buy

+
32.5MP resolution
+
Up to 30fps bursts
+
7K oversampling
+
Accepts RF lenses

Reasons to avoid

-
Not the biggest buffer
-
Unusual control wheel

In terms of video the Canon EOS R7 (opens in new tab) is quite the powerhouse, capable of un-cropped 4K 60p, 4K 30p oversampled from 7K, and 1080p up to 120p – and Canon tells us that you can record around 60 minutes of video before overheating and record limits come into play. The camera features Canon Log-3, clean HDMI out, as well as a microphone input and headphone jack. In a lot of ways, shooting with the R7 really does feel like shooting with a mirrorless (read: sleeker and smaller) Canon EOS 90D (opens in new tab) – but with more bells and whistles. For now, we're very impressed with what the Canon EOS R7 can do. There's plenty of play in the files, giving you lots of leeway for post production, and the video quality is crisp and clear in both 4K and 1080p, with autofocus performance that won't let you down.

Video first

This section contains cameras that are designed for video first and stills second (or, in the case of the EOS C70, video only). The Sony A7S III is a classic example; a stellar 4K camera that can also capture 12MP stills. The Lumix S1H is another; a big, heavy beast that does have a 24MP sensor but leans so far towards video that the stills capability is more of a bonus. The Canon EOS C70 looks like a mirrorless camera, but it's really a cinema camera. We include it as an example of one of the best cinema cameras for handheld video, vlogging and one-person filming.

(Image credit: Adam Duckworth)
If you're after a camera strictly for video, the A7S III is astonishingly good - but it's rubbish for photos!

Specifications

Type: Mirrorless
Sensor: Full frame
Megapixels: 12.1
Lens mount: Sony FE
Monitor: 3-inch vari-angle touchscreen, Fully articulating 3-inch touchscreen 1,440K dots
Viewfinder: OLED EVF, 9,437K dots
Max continuous shooting speed: 10fps
Max video resolution: 4K
User level: Professional

Reasons to buy

+
Incredible low light performance
+
Stunning AF, even for video

Reasons to avoid

-
No 6K or 8K video
-
Still images only 12MP

It took Sony five years to upgrade the video-centric A7S II to a Mark III, but the wait has been worth it for keen enthusiast and professional moviemakers. It might not boast 6K or 8K video resolution of some of its rivals, and with only 12.1MP it’s not a powerhouse super-stills machine either. But apart from a big and expensive cinema camera, it’s the only camera that can shoot 4K at 60p full frame with no crop, recorded internally, in 10-bit 4:2:2 with no limitations on recording time and with all the advanced AF functions still working. The 12MP resolution means the A7S III is pretty poor as a stills camera, but an absolute natural at 4K, so it is tilted more towards video than stills. However, sports fans should note it can shoot stills at 10fps and has an incredible 1,000-shot raw buffer (using new CFexpress Type A cards).

(Image credit: Digital Camera World)
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Ideal for anyone wanting to shoot with professional codecs such as ProRes and Raw

Specifications

Sensor: Micro Four Thirds
Dynamic Range: 13 Stops
Lens Mount: Micro Four Thirds
Monitor: 5-inch LCD touchscreen
Max video resolution: 4K
Standard ISO range : Dual native ISO 400 and 3200

Reasons to buy

+
Excellent range of ports
+
5-inch LCD screen
+
Shoots RAW video
+
Micro Four Thirds lens mount

Reasons to avoid

-
No flip-out screen
-
No built in ND filter
-
No Continuos AF

If you're primarily a filmmaker or videographer and looking for a camera strictly for video, the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema 4K (opens in new tab) is a cine camera without the high price tag. Even though it was launched back in 2018, it's still a popular choice among filmmakers who need Pro-Res and Raw recording. It has a Micro Four Thirds sensor which means there are a huge number of Olympus, Panasonic and third-party lenses available both brand new and secondhand. It can shoot up to 4K 60p with no crop factor and has 13 stops of dynamic range. With a Canon LP-E6 battery, you could argue it's a bit of a mix-match of a camera and although it only has 60 minutes of battery life you can plug it into the mains for continuous recording. It features one SDXC card slow and one CFast 2.0 slot which supports 4K Raw. The one downside to the camera is it doesn't have a flip-out screen but if you're a serious filmmaker you'd probably want to invest in one of the best on-camera monitors (opens in new tab) anyway.

(Image credit: James Artaius / Digital Camera World)
Canon's first video-centric RF mount camera boasts an incredible 16 stops of dynamic range

Specifications

Sensor size: 26.2 x 13.8 mm (Super35)
Sensor resolution: 4096 x 2160 (8.85 MP)
Card slots: SDXC x 2
Lens mount: RF
Max shooting resolution: 4K
Display size: 3.5-inch
EVF: No

Reasons to buy

+
4K up to 120fps, 2K up to 180fps
+
Dual Gain with 16 stops dynamic range

Reasons to avoid

-
No RAW output
-
Cannot use PL lenses

The Canon EOS C70 is Canon's first RF mount cinema camera offering powerful video capabilities. It features Canon's Super35 sensor, Dual Gain Output, a massive 16 stops of dynamic range and 4K 120fps / 2k 180fps. It also includes a game-changing touchscreen which makes accurately focusing quicker and easier. The C70 bosts the deep learning iTR AFX system from the Canon EOS-1D X Mark II which offers head detection and extremely accurate autofocus. If you don't want to invest in expensive RF lenses, you can use an adapter to mount EF lenses onto it. Canon's new speed booster will also enable you to use them with an extra f-stop and a full-frame angle of view. Where the C70 falls down is that it doesn't record RAW and you can't use PL glass on it - for that, you'll have to step up to the Canon C300 Mark III.

(Image credit: Digital Camera World/Rod Lawton)
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Capture high quality stills and impressive 6K video

Specifications

Type: Mirrorless
Sensor: Full frame
Sensor resolution: 24.2MP
Lens mount: L-mount
4K frame rates: 60, 50, 30, 25, 24p
4K sensor crop factor: 1x
Standard ISO range: Dual Native ISO, 100-51,200
Memory cards: 2x SD/SDHC/SDXC (UHS II)

Reasons to buy

+
6K video capture
+
Effective as a stills camera too
+
V-Log, LUTs and cinema features

Reasons to avoid

-
No raw video capture
-
Continuous AF not that reliable

With the Lumix S1H, Panasonic has used its considerable video experience to bring many of its high-end VariCam features to the Lumix S range. The controls, the interface and certainly the hardware have been build for video and cinematography, and the fact it’s also a very serviceable 24MP stills camera is a bonus. It’s a truly compelling ‘bridge’ between conventional system cameras and higher end cine gear, especially for existing Panasonic videographers. It's expensive, though, and specialized too, so not necessarily the first choice if you need to keep the cost down – though it does make the 'regular' S1 seem like second best now. Its official Netflix accreditation is a major plus point, but its continuous AF proved pretty patchy in our tests so that, combined with this camera's considerable size and weight, rules it out for vlogger style run-and-gun style videography. However, a recent upgrade to offer ProRes RAW output via HDMI to Atomos Ninja V devices adds to the credentials of the S1H as a cinema camera offering at a regular camera price point.

How we test cameras 

We test DSLR and mirrorless cameras both in real-world shooting scenarios and in carefully controlled lab conditions. Our lab tests measure resolution, dynamic range and signal to noise ratio. Resolution is measured using ISO resolution charts, dynamic range is measured using DxO Analyzer test equipment and DxO Analyzer is also used for noise analysis across the camera's ISO range. We use both real-world testing and lab results to inform our comments in buying guides.

• Find out more about how we test and review on Digital Camera World (opens in new tab)

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Having studied Journalism and Public Relations at the University of the West of England Hannah developed a love for photography through a module on photojournalism. She specializes in Portrait, Fashion and lifestyle photography but has more recently branched out in the world of stylized product photography. For the last 3 years Hannah has worked at Wex Photo Video as a Senior Sales Assistant using her experience and knowledge of cameras to help people buy the equipment that is right for them. With 5 years experience working with studio lighting, Hannah has run many successful workshops teaching people how to use different lighting setups.