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Lighting for Bird Photography

Lesson 7 from: Beginner's Guide to Bird Photography

Ben Knoot

Lighting for Bird Photography

Lesson 7 from: Beginner's Guide to Bird Photography

Ben Knoot

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Lesson Info

7. Lighting for Bird Photography

Lesson Info

Lighting for Bird Photography

When you're out photographing birds there's about five different lighting situations you need to be aware of. There's flat or even light. There's the light right behind you so sun at your back. There's the light right in front of you so you're facing the sun. There's channeled light which is a very, very specific kind of light source that penetrates and only hits a part of the subject. And then there's side light. This is when you're shooting kind of perpendicular to your light source. An example of flat or even light is a Hummingbird on a perch in a a nice, shaded area. This is gonna give nice pure colors. Low in contrast but very, very pleasing to look at. An example of side light would be like a shorebird like a Dowitcher that's sitting in a pond and the sun is coming from my right and I'm shooting at it straight on. This is gonna illuminate one side of the bird and have the other side of the bird in the shade which is gonna give it a kind of a nice, artistic look. Next example of b...

ack lighting. An owl flying through a field with like a whole bunch of spiderwebs with bugs flying around and then the sun illuminating through the feathers of the owl, it gives it a really nice haloed edge kind of look. Another good one is the sun at your back, this is usually best done in the morning or in the late evening when the sun is at its golden hour. This is really good on ducks. Illuminates the water to a nice blue, gives a nice strong, vibrant, warm color and also these are gonna be very pleasing to look at. Another good one to look at is channeled light. Channeled light is one of the harder ones to find. It's usually caused by a breaking storm or sun shining through the trees at just the right angle or breaking through the clouds at just the right angle. It usually it creates a natural vignetting to your image and usually one part of your image is illuminated and that's where the eyes draws and these are generally the most artistic types of photos. These are all lighting sources that you should be on the lookout while you're out shooting.

Ratings and Reviews

Cynthia
 

I liked this class. It gives beginners a great place to start photographing birds. I especially liked his lesson on post-processing. Too many classes skip that part. The use of bird calls is what it is. To be competitive in bird photography you probably have to use them. I personally won't; it's just not worth it to me. So nice to see a young person active in this field!

Colleen Church
 

This class is wonderful. Ben give you some very helpful information to starting your photo birding adventures. The apps he suggested are very helpful. The tips for scouting and what to look get you going. I will definitely be watching it again.

a Creativelive Student
 

I really enjoyed this course. The instructor doesn't beat around the bush. He gives you useful information that you can implement. I especially loved that he talks about apps on your phone that could be used to make your experience more fruitful. The only thing I didn't like was the advertisement for Olympus, but you can just skip that part.

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