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Building and Using DIY Lighting Gear

Lesson 7 of 27

Lighting Demo with Door Scrim


Building and Using DIY Lighting Gear

Lesson 7 of 27

Lighting Demo with Door Scrim


Lesson Info

Lighting Demo with Door Scrim

Let's bring danielle have a seat, my dear yeah, but you kind of sit off to the side of the cheerless gonna turn this now so you just sit like this do something sassy ok, so when we work about light talk about lighting I'm gonna be shooting from back there a little bit and one of these concepts it's kind of cool to keep in mind is the idea of from here teo here and here to hear means if you think about your camera lens and you're triangle basically you're seeing right your field of you and I'm seeing a field to use me fairly tight because we have a background that I want to make sure we stay on somebody who's probably a one o five eighty five or one o five lens so my field of view is a triangle it looks kind of like this, right? So what I want to do with my light source specifically some like this is to kind of start it back by her ear the back edge hey, not so much appear not so much back there what kind of towards her ear along a line with her ear and then I point the front edge right...

along the line straight at the camera so from camera I should basically be seeing pretty much a sliver straight down this this scrim sometimes I'm bringing in a little more but more often than not, if you bring it a little more your into blocking your view, right, so more often the night's going to kind of like that and the reason we want that everyone is much of this surface area in front of her to rap the light so this is going to throw light kind of soften and feel the shadows on that side still gonna be a directional light to be a nice dramatic ish, but this is more like a window light, ok? But I had it further back where is most of my life going to go over there with a little bit of it catching her face there, right? And if I'm too much this way, then it kind of go straight and it doesn't actually throw anything around so it's kind of work we're thinking about some like that, okay? And then we'll pop a speed light on here and grab one of these little of angle brackets that I talked about are in the bag there and yell it might mean caitlin I might need you name it so here's one form of the angle bracket and the spigot so we talked about these things here and this just allows you to angle your flash on the light stand so thiss clamp got me that so good put this on here so we can angle it need to on top of here, this is where these little foot ease that come with most flash units come with so you just want to touch that the top of the spigot you put in the right spot. Come on. Now, if we need to, we can go horizontal, vertical anywhere between between that and this angle there we could get this pre much where we need to. Ok? So for this, we want to put this in the back of the the scrim and relatively in the middle. So this is going to move this behind here, but just kind of showing you the angle of this thing right now so relatively in the middle, and I want to set the direction of my head to match the direction of the screen because this will kind of have a pattern. It's not perfect circle coming out of here, it's kind of rectangular. So the angle disable match of that. I want it slightly above center because general, with light, you wanted to be coming from above their eye line slightly above the eye line. So if there is any sort of hot spot, whatever it's going to be slightly above her eye line, so this is kind of I'm going to set up behind, and the other thing you want to make sure of is that your flash zoom is set to the right setting so thatyou covers much of the scream is possible so what does that look like we'll show you a minute I wanna place this behind just slightly above her eye let's see probably over there people that that way and we'll test the zoom on that so the way you test the zoom let's take a shot first and then just look at it some are tennis receiver on here manually so let's see if I could turn so we're going to take a shot of that just to look at the pattern that the flash makes at this zoom setting so the current zooms setting of that head is twenty four millimeter I'm gonna zoom in just little tighter so that we can actually see it all right so we can see on the screen now the pattern that we got there uh you can see there it's a little hot in the middle doesn't complete completely fill this grim right so that was on a setting of ah one hundred thirty five so I'm gonna bring that zoom setting down that had priced about thirty five millimeters and see how much more it will cover on the backdrop so you guys were kind of blocked you can't see that at home they can open up there oh and I resented the wrong way no the noise I'm supposed be hearing out okay coming up there in a second okay, so we widened it up now a little bit so now you can see they were start to feel things out so I met twenty four millimeters and a program to move the whole thing down because of distance or moved the flash back because that's about as wide as mice zoom will go twenty four millimeters so I can do two things I can either go wider which I can't or I could move the flash slightly back to film or of that space okay, so uh caitlin I just have you on set with me I need you hold this light adjust something just hold on to that and we developed a system caitlin's developed a system to help remember how to adjust the flashlight which way it goes you want to tell tell about how you remember that I don't have a bike clicking right means but getting bigger cliff clicking left means going small zoom right means you're getting closer left means so let must mean far say hey that's that's how you remember very good okay thank you go too far all right pop it up and so say now we filled up a little more of it and that's probably good well again putting the hot spots slightly high because we're doing a head shot for doing full length we'd lower down so it's more even on our hot spot which we have a little bit of one uh, is kind of right over here, which is just fine. It's going to work with so I will change our lenses and start shooting. Could you grab from that table? The one o five lens it's kind of laying flat, but itself there. And we'll take a take a behind the scenes here, so you can kind of see if the photo from the whole thing, if that he's not seeing it here, asi okay, so there's a there's a behind the scenes. You can kind of see the relationship from the disk to her to the thingamajig, and then we could start shooting with it switched lenses. All right, so we just start off with very simple we could do a little head shoddy kind of thing a little bit low here, and I still backdrop going on and so she's slightly turning into the light. Now I haven't checked my exposure. Anything I'm just basing going off the first tests. So when I put this lens on, I've changed my point of view and everything else that was slightly different exposure. So meet a ring that brings up the question of meeting how do you meet her light and I think the best way of meter is with your eye, and you could look at the history ram on your camera. He have that available to you, but I don't use a light meter anymore, and I've used one for years and years and years, but I just don't use one and more because it's not really necessary. Your best light meter is right here in the camera, looking at your history ram or looking at the image in saying I wanted lighter, I wanted darker and all you need to do is have a little experiment experience knowing how much lighter, how much dark? Usually when I do classes they posed to people. If you look at that image, you guys where you can't see it behind a scrim uh, how do you feel? Does it feel dark? Maybe want a low key image? And the kind of interesting thing is that you as a photographer, it's up to you? What you like is what's, right? So if you look at that and go, you know what? I wanted to be very low key. I wanted to be kind of underexposed that's the effect I'm going for then it's right? And you finish it up you process that I could take this image in the light room where doesn't like now? We could process this and make that work great but love you looks under expose and so it's another photographer coming told underexposed I need a full stop maybe two stops more on that thing um is that right? But then yeah, okay, so get used to trusting your gut is your lighting. Lighting is about feeling and that's one of the things I want to get people away from and a lot of photographers who have been in a long time kind of get pissed at me for say, you know, tell him to kind of forget the technical crap but it's true, I want you to check out a kind of not be so technical and light mohr from a feel from a heart place like if that feels good to you then it's good, right? I don't care what have stopped. I don't care what power setting that is. It feels good it's, right? But we do need to know I want a brighter so I need to add more life that's about that's all there is do it right so let's, go and let's add a little more light I'll go maybe two thirds up more and they go full stop let's see what it looks like so I've set my receiver to channel c and daniel can you turn your chin ever slightly to the right good it's like that's nice okay so now where I think I want one stop brighter than it was before and so we can look at that again and go is that right enough when image comes in you'll see at home when it comes in the screen it comes in and then the image changes slightly it's old darker is because I have a default preset set up in light room to add more contrast and kind of tweak the images so the j peg previews what you initially see which is a little brighter and then it my pre set is taking over automatically changing it so we'll take that in the break but it's close enough right now we can they see that's a that's a stop brighter than it was before and then we'll add one more stop and you guys decided what point do you think it's about right and I want to make sure that flash was actually set where I wanted to be blow it's not my fault I think we're gonna get a totally different effect now that flash was set on uh repeating mode just not what we want so we're gonna get a totally different look that's okay we'll start from this point one two three boom okay so now we're messing with powers now way over I can tell where at least two stops over so go one two three one two, three each click is a third of a stop on my particular controller will be two stops and down from that anything right here so the first thing I'm gonna do is always just to kind of play with light get my exposure right and they will start playing with poses and adjusting that sort of thing after that now we're on okay now we're pretty much dialled as far as the exposure if you can see it home what we have is a beautiful light that's just like a soft dramatic window light there's enough cast light in the studio to light up the background to make it subtle but still they're um and dasher model looks awful gorgeous so let's shoot all right well there we go like that nice little closer shoulders income lean towards me just a little bit same same pose that you're in maybe on the edge of just coming toward the engine this way just a little was that a dicey hand for a question go up chin up to slightly there here we go nice so she is the one eyebrow raiser things you can do it good come back towards the light this time showing up in towards the light good eyes higher like razor I just a bit beautiful not quite as much little lure good question I saw his hand go no question coming in from dean marsh who says palin's bree how oh that's beautiful how does how does this scrim compare with a closed soft box? So is there any difference to the fact that yeah, box might be closed versus yes, you do get some spill from this or bounce light so some lights going to bounce we're in a wait studio space so some of the light here is going to be bouncing back onto that wall, adding some fill some of it's going to be casting that way a little it's falling of the background um, I use that to my advantage. I mean, I want kind of a soft one light tool if I was if this was closed and actually we're going to show that later we can put some v flats or something to close this up, it makes everything everything a little bit darker. We saw the same main quality of light on her face, but everything else goes slightly darker because you don't have that bounce going around, but I'm taking that to my advantage is saying that's, my fill light, whatever bounces and flies around here is my extra feel like I don't even need to put a reflector on this side, but we could not actual brighton everything up, but I like the drama of the image without a reflector because it just has again more cattle schools that way but there were definitely times to use some feel like we will complete that as well. Ok that's a good question yeah all right gosh, I don't know if I want to do more of that one is pretty good go pretty her eyes look you see that catch light from that from the big window makes his beautiful like sparkly catch light in her eyes and having her turn into the light gives a nice shaping around her jaw line right here to see another okay, so the next step in building a portrait is to decide maybe I want a little extra this and that may be a hair light and edge light I feel like we'll kind of do that later we're gonna start building more complex lighting scenarios right now I want to show you is what beautiful stuff you can do with just one light and one simple twenty five dollars accessory okay, so right there we got a beautiful light I love that little is done to the background and now we can also use this slightly differently by just turning it horizontal and we'll need more light stand to light stands we're going to clamp it toe life stands to go horizontal let me we don't think about using something like this horizontally but the advantage is what you guys think so we think of the ear to your concept sorry and we're now going horizontal what do you think this was going to do around more wrap around? It would help to soften the other side of the shadows a little bit. This is actually something that I use a lot for just head and shoulders three quarters like we're doing now again, if I just want one light don't want to complicate things if you blend this with your existing light is that it's? Still, it works pretty nice, so we need one more light stand where is the other one way or another light stands there you go, we'll clamp this up and use it similar and just kind of get a slightly different, slightly softer kind of a wrap around like that going horizontally. And you know what? This horizontal works great for small groups if you have a group in the studio because you're gonna need more light across this works great and I've done, you know, family groups in the studio by holding this horizontally and kind of up here like this. So you have to cast shadows on people that are stacked and it works great. You probably want to put if you are shooting groups, put to speed lights behind this so that you can shoot, go faster and recycle faster because people tend to move and blank and all that you want to keep shooting as you can. So you for group's output to speed lights but you don't need to you don't need the power but you want to recycle time sometimes. So play with that too. Question yes. Where clinton is up together? Yeah, well, you're setting that up. Can you remind us this is from piers? Are you controlling the zoom of the speed light from the night conte tl or did you control it manually before you started shooting? I'm controlling it with the controller on my camera with the transceiver, it will actually control the zoom and the power of the speed light otherwise, you just go to the back of the flash and bring it up adjusted no more questions. I have time for one more overstating this year way. Have a question from a woman on the for jack. What about is a very questionable person is what about a family group photo with it? Horizontal? Could you do that? Yeah. Yeah, actually outside. Yes. On dh, that is let's. Go, caitlin, just grab one of the lower adjusters from go up just a few inches about their yeah, family group outside and I've used this outside perfect example we have in my town of bend, oregon these beautiful snowcapped mountains blue skies and everybody wants the mountains in the background right under full sun and but they also need to sit in the foreground and look beautiful so when I shoot it when the sun is going is kind of towards the back slightly so the sun becomes my hair lights imagine she's here backdrop to the mountains the sun is still slightly up in the sky but behind her so it becomes my hair light and then I'll use this exact set up just like this with a horizontal except I'll pull it back a little bit okay but if you could pull that back you guys are falling using imagination right big mountains blue sky family of four or mom and dad and two kids on the grass right here use the same set up just like this two speed lights behind it um you've got gorgeous light you shoot right here use your neutral density filter boom dial down like minus one on your ambien so your mountains your blue skies nice and rich right and then all you need to do is just adjust the flash you take a test exposure for your mountains flying the mountains where you want it would be the shutter speed means of the of the neutral density filter keeping the shutter speed it to fifty or anything under that dial that neutral density and then all of a sudden you just need to just the flash do a couple test so that the people in the foreground look right and then you've got this beautiful balance almost like a painting behind when you do that and I use that for my family portrait all the time looks awesome ok so let's go back let's finish this one off and we're gonna make some v flats to complement this light so put this horizontally bring it forward it's going to wrap because I'm turning horizontal now I'm gonna change my flash to horizontal instead of vertical bring it down slightly so that it's filling the back of this car or image I'll just leave the zoom setting where it is it probably fine going here this way we get here yeah that's a big smile looks like on this okay because I'm change things around and they need to adjust my power but it may not need to by light on her looks pretty good way it is the only thing I'm seeing in the background you can see a little shadow from the scrim itself is getting casting shadows we just need to adjust for that either bringing it forward or back so let's bring this bring that back edge that way and towards me a little bit okay nice chin up justice touch there you go okay so you can see with this uh it's opens up the shadows slightly on the soft side of her face on the shadow side of her face and get just overall general, a little more illumination than the vertical version of it. And also good up option if you have one or two or three people with engagement portrait two people together sitting on the chair, this would work really nice for that and good thiss background, I'm really liking this back on this is from white house custom color if you guys ever checked out their custom backdrops, they do some beautiful backdrops, and this is one of my when my new ones from them that's pretty pretty awesome. I'm liking it, having been shot with it before, until now. That's good. Any other questions for move on to next? Just a question about you had talked about maybe using to speed lights, and the question is with those to be next to each other or on the same bracket somehow. Yeah, actually here's a good bracket gonna dig in my but if you don't mind me digging down here for a second, so this bracket is a pretty cool one because it will hold up to four speed lights. It's got a little sick screen. You're speaking you here. So it's basically just this flat bar and it's got a quarter's twenty upside down and on the top in the bottom, and I've just added on my little foodies the flashes scream in, so I can have two flashes in the top and into actual on the bottom. And then you can adjust the's side to side because they're little sliding holes. So it's, a pretty cool, pretty versatile back it, I think it's, a manfro toe piece you may have to search, or maybe in my links on the pdf. I'm pretty sure, but this is their other ones that have, like, why, shapes and ones that have just a t that holds two or three flashes, this one I like, because it will hold four on, gives me the adjustability. Move them. So if I had to put this behind it with these two, right, right next, each other's closest possible. So it looks like one light source, just combining in boom, filling the back of the scream.

Class Description

You don’t need expensive gear to make professional quality images. In Building and Using DIY Lighting Gear, Kevin Kubota will teach you how to create lighting and photography tools with affordable and readily available materials.

Kevin will walk you through every step of building your own light modifiers and photo gear and show you exactly how to use them, with live models, for beautiful effects. You’ll learn how to:

  • Work with speedlights and mix natural light with flash
  • Shoot portraits in the studio or on location with DIY gear
  • Set up a simple commercial lighting shoot

Kevin will share essential lighting concepts that will improve all of your lighting choices. You’ll learn techniques you can apply to all the gear you use – whether it is from a manufacturer or your tool shed.

The right gear makes getting your best shot easier. Whether you use natural light, speedlights, or studio strobes this class will show you how to augment your gear with affordable, handmade tools to get even better results.


Geo Montecillo

Super good course highly recommended it will help you get started on a low budget, yet creating wonderful images. Is there a link to west got?

F8 and be there

This was an awesome fun class! So many great ideas on how to achieve various lighting effects on a smaller budget. You will save the price of the course most likely by making one softbox (or whatever) yourself. Highly recommended!

Adrian Martinez

Going into my 4th year of photography, I finally built a photo studio in my home and after purchasing some lighting gear and other accessories, I decided to buy this course for additional ideas - GREAT class! I learned a LOT and was very inspired to be more creative. I especially liked that Kevin didn't joke too much or stray away from the course very much at all. Yet, he was still very entertaining and very informative. I'm putting so much of what I got form this class into action right away! This course DEFINITELY pays for itself - right away!