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Light "feathering" true or myth?
Old 11-12-2006, 07:07 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Little different setup this time. I used strip box with grid to the left of model and reflector on the right just outside the frame(see diagram).
I was trying to "feather" the light accross her face, but I find this type of light little harsher than pointing the source directly at the subject. The catch lights are narrower as well which, indicates smaller light source. That would explain harsher light. Unless, I am missing something? I posted this in couple of forums. I wander what your thoughts are?




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Re: Light "feathering" true or myth?
Old 11-12-2006, 07:21 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I think the lighting is okay and the photo works well in my view. It is a little harder light, but I think that is par for use with a grid and feathering the shot. I would tend to do a little selective softening in post processing on a shot like this (in your example to the chin area and to the fingers). The eyes naturally came out quite sharp which harder lighting seems to accent.



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Re: Light "feathering" true or myth?
Old 11-12-2006, 07:25 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Marek, cant say as I'm an expert on this but here is my $0.02. I think this is a very nice image. The shadow across her face is rather pronounced. Play with your reflector position by moving in and out or maybe a little more forward to soften the transition into shadow. The other thing you can do is twist the reflector (asuming your not using a rigid reflector) by twisting it, you can leave the top flat and bounce light as you did here, and have the lower portion of the reflector add a little more fill, if that makes sense. Been watching your images and they keep getting better. Keep it up and keep posting.

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Re: Light "feathering" true or myth? 

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Re: Light "feathering" true or myth?
Old 11-12-2006, 07:27 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Thank you Fredrick. It makes sense.
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Re: Light "feathering" true or myth?
Old 11-12-2006, 07:49 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Thank you Dean for suggestions and kind words. I know what you mean by twisting the reflector, I will have to try it. My biggest problem was however on soft box side (harsh light). I was watching a video by Will Crockett it which he chages the angle of the softbox, turning it away from the object toward camera and saying this will give you softer light. I find this just opposite.
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Re: Light "feathering" true or myth?
Old 11-12-2006, 08:04 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Marek.

I think Frederick is right with regards to the grid. Try it again without the grid in the softbox and you might get it. It also depends on how your box is set up in terms of interior baffle(s) and reflective surfaces inside the box. Also the depth of the box makes a big difference. My experience has been the edges of the light pool are softer, but much dimmer and the soft edge is very small so your subject has to hold still. Since I shoot a lot of things that don't move that works well for me. I don't think I've every tried shooting people that way.

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Re: Light "feathering" true or myth?
Old 11-12-2006, 08:18 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Steve,
Thank you for the suggestions. I will try again with bigger softbox and no grids.
This softbox had internal buffle and was white on inside, by the way. I agree that grid and fact that the box was so narrow contributed to the problem. I am pretty happy with the result, but had to use lots more softening than usually.
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Re: Light "feathering" true or myth?
Old 11-13-2006, 07:22 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Marek,

I can't add much to the good discussion on the image, which is quite nice. I've found that "feathering" the softbox works nicely to add a bit of depth and shadow, which a softbox normally seems to remove.

As an aside, where did you find the software or icons or whatever that you are using for your lighting diagrams? The website referenced in the diagram is not in existence.

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Re: Light "feathering" true or myth?
Old 11-13-2006, 08:30 AM   #9 (permalink)
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I'm not as expert as others who've commented, but I got to thinking - if your diagram is to scale, then your reflector is, e.g., 2' to the model's right, while the source is 4' to the model's left. In essence, the light from the reflector travels 8' (6 from source, and 2 back to model), or twice as far as the light straight from the source. Twice as far is 1/4 the light, or two stops, if I recall correctly. Your light is soft - your contrast ratio is too great. Move the box closer to the model, which will reduce the ratio and brighten the reflector side - if you adjust the exposure appropriately. I think you also want to change the reflector a bit to bring the light in just a bit more from the front, to fill in some of the shadows caused by your somewhat directional and rear softbox. Or pull your box somewhat more forward of the model.

Nice work.
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Re: Light "feathering" true or myth?
Old 11-13-2006, 09:58 AM   #10 (permalink)
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You got a lot of great suggestions on your pictures here, so my comment is ...
damn fine work on the diagram!


How'd you draw all those cool pieces of equipment?
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