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Playing with lighting during capture
Old 09-30-2006, 12:57 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Hello everyone,

I have been trying to learn these skills everyone talks about and I tried to play with lighting some during the capture phase instead of post-processing through photoshop CS. I found that I still did not have enough light in the eyes and I am not using catch light correctly for the eyes. I have done some PP in photoshop CS for fun but, was not fully happy with the capture results. Any advice, tips, thoughts, and comments would be appreciated.

Take care and be safe.
God be with you,
Tony





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Re: Playing with lighting during capture
Old 09-30-2006, 02:26 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Catch lights can be tricky things especially when shooting in rear view mirrors. In general, though, a small flash can be used to add the catchlight, or a small reflector. Also, you can add the catch light in PS. But the eyes have to be large enough in the photo to make catch lights relevant. Only your first image has large enough eyes to make the catchlight meaningful. The catchlight in the first photo is ok, but the lighting is a bit hard. This would be a good shot to use softer light to render the skin better. You ended up with good rim lighting however. Was this perhaps shot with a on camera flash?



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Re: Playing with lighting during capture
Old 09-30-2006, 10:10 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Hello R_Fredrick_Smith,

The first image was done in my kitchen on a day when my wife was very happy and willing to lend a models face. I am always delighted when she is in a happy mood. lol...

To answer your question, I have the photogentic 320ws, 3 light set kit. I used one light on a stand upper right about 7ft high angled down at a 45 in an attempt to create hair light. I used the umberlla for this light and set it for 125ss f5.6. I used a second light with just the front round attachment and bounced it on the wall behind her to try and create a circle of light behind her just like you would see if I use a grid but, not so round. This light was also set at 125ss f5.6. Then I used foamcore 4' X4', white, at the lower right to bounce light into the lower part of the face. I used my 80DX speedlight with a lightspere II defuser (cloud) with cap on a monopod balanced by my daughter slightly to the right of my camera at TTL on manual with my Kodak 14n set to rear with my mode to manual at 125ss f5.6. All my studio light were used as remote slaves and my 80DX was the master off my cable mounted to my hotshoe.

I used two render light filters in post processing in photoshop to darken and lighten the face / eyes after my color conversion to B & W.

I am the photographer whom would make a $500.00 reflector or beauty dish out of christmas wrapping paper and cardboard if I felt or thought it would increase the look and feel of my images to any amount. I am finding that I know what I am talking about per education more than I can produce/take the images I am seeing in my mind. I feel I am a photoshop image creater more than a photographer. Lighting is killing me and creating images like yours in the capture phase and to have them look professional is my dream and goal in life. I think you have some outstanding images. I read everyone say they do little in post processing and everything is in the capture phase. I just do not get it but, am looking for the day I can say, I have gained the skill of mastering lighting, equipment, and my suroundings, that will be $1000.00 dollars please! lol...

Well, here is a second image I took today of my daughter. She is better behind the camera as my assistant than she is in front being the center of attention. lol... I tried the balancing tips you gave me in my last post. I metered the sky at 60ss and marked the subject with flash by matching my flash to my desired f-stop. I also tried to use 1.4 as most here have said to do.

Better or worse?



Thanks,
Tony
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Re: Playing with lighting during capture
Old 09-30-2006, 10:29 PM   #4 (permalink)
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The lighting is great on this shot. You've got the sky rendered really well and the lighting on the subject seems right on. Given the shot as made, I would only change the cropping to make the subject a little less in the center. The wide open lens also helped to throw the background out of focus which is just what you want.

On your original #1 shot, what you really needed was to have a large light source fairly close to the subject as your main light. This would make the image softer which is what you want with women. These digital cameras can render the skin so sharp that you can see the pores of the skin, that is usually what you don't want for portraits of women. So play around with the large light source close to the model for extra softness. The shot I posted earlier was made with a large 4'x3' softbox as the main and it was about 4' from the model. Notice the softness of the skin. But I then made sure to sharpen the eyes in post so that they would still be sharp.

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