Skip to main content

Conquering Crappy Light

Lesson 14 of 32

Crappy Lighting Condition: Backlight


Conquering Crappy Light

Lesson 14 of 32

Crappy Lighting Condition: Backlight


Lesson Info

Crappy Lighting Condition: Backlight

When I'm shooting in this particular situation this is one of my favorite times issue at the end of the day the lights really really low heavily backlit and one of the others and that's it's not always great but it's pretty good about that because the sun is behind their head the light on their faces usually pretty good and flat you don't really need to modify it too much because it's basically it's open shade we talked about that a little bit yesterday the whole sky is the light source filling in their faces just really dim compared to light behind them so it's nice hair light and then open sky so when I first grab my camera if I do my and kind of valued of meat oring stick it on africa priority and pointed at the subject unfortunately I have to be smarter than my camera because what it gives me is not so great so let's take a look at what it gives you right off the bat this is what it gives me to start with and so right off the bat um this is my appetite I like to shoot at I'm I made...

it up I'd like to point to um but right off the bat wouldn't saying is ok she's really dark there's not much light on her but that sky's really bright so we're going try to meet in the middle and so it gives me bad on both I don't have a nice guy and I don't have nice light on her face, so what I have to do again is to be smarter than my camera, and so would I like to do is use aperture priority and the reason I liked you separate your priority is okay later in the day, let's say, I'm shooting an event or a portrait or something, and, uh, every minute at that end of the day, it gets darker quickly. I mean, within ten minutes, it could be two stops, different lights from when the sun's out, when the sons you know, behind the horizon and so if I'm shooting manual, which is actually you should give me more control when I'm shooting back light if I'm shooting manual and I forget in that ten minute times spring, it might have gone to stop straighter and, like, maybe can't save those images. So for me, I'd rather just you aperture priority use exposure compensation, check the back once in a while to tweak it because it gets me pretty close. So in this instance, I went from one thirty two hundred's the second knowing okay, that's, way too dark and the more that you practice that this the better that you get, I know from me like I can look at an image and say, at this point how much brighter I wanted to be if you can't, I would go. Okay, I need it. Stop reiter maybe a stop in a third or stopping to third so I would look at something like that. And I would know that at minimum, into stop brighter. And I'm probably for my personal taste how I like to shoot it would be a stop in two thirds. Many photographers would look that's. Okay, maybe a little bit too bright, but it's personal taste like if you look at a lot of wedding photography, a lot of the portrait over exposed everyone skins look, looks nicer when it's over exposed it's okay, and it's it's to taste I think, uh, commonly I tend to shoot a third to two thirds of a stop brighter than what a meter might actually tell you is correct. It's personal taste so let's, scrub this over and take a look when I use my aperture priority that one thirty two hundredth of a second, I'm gonna move it. I goto one when thousands of a second and it brightens it up. So if you're looking, the light on her face isn't great. But it's not bad, like if you had to do a portrait like that, you could you could take a reflector from underneath and try to kick a little bit of light if you just want a little bit of sparkle in the eyes. Um, but depending on how it is that's actually not terrible it's more less that the color is kind of lacking for me. Um, that's why, at the beginning of this session you didn't see, um I used took a picture of a color checker because then later on, in post I can use my eye dropper on the things that we just showed you and not grab the neutral point because the neutral point to me is too cool. I'm going to grab one of those warmer patches and so it'll give me a warmer sunset feel instead of right now, it's just a little bit too dull for me, so let's, play a little bit more and by the way, um, I'm using my evaluative with a center focus point because she's in the center and I could just recompose because I'm using back one focus so let's pause it, uh, because when we get back, I said let's, take a look so I had eric take a shot here help me out here and you can see just barely a little bit more light in the top of her eyes and you see this side of her face is a little bit warmer because I had him come in with a reflector and just holding he's actually using a silver reflector because it's late in the day it's warms warm light that's why he's holding it and it looks warmer the silver is bouncing the warm sunlight so it looks warm this is why I've heard people say like oh what the end of the day you want to use the gold to match like a gold reflector to match the gold's son no it's already going to be gold because the light you're catching is warm yellow light so I don't ever bring out that that gold reflector silver gold mix in limited situations with this the silver is just fine so same shutter speed I'm using back button focuses well like if I'm needed to recompose I'd lock in my focus on her and recompose that's how I would work doesn't matter you could still lock in your focus on your trigger if that's what you have all right so let's take a look this is when eric was standing I don't know how far back were you like five feet back and then I brought him in as close as we could get because um if you could kind of see in this scene from the overview shots it's not the ideal backlit situation that I wanted it wasn't like a light pouring in from behind where you papa reflector and it catches a ton of light and illuminates her face there were clouds it was dull and so there's can't really see too much so I had him come in closer the same thing is bringing the bucket in closer like we talked about he's far back and there's not much water or light to throw it won't reach them so I had to bring the reflector into like a foot away basically still take a look at that so I asked him to bring the reflector and a little bit right there to try to kick a little bit of light and then you see it there a little bit on her face and it just warms up the side of her face a little bit fills in the shadowed I on a bright day where it's actually full sun where he was standing originally probably would have been totally fine in a situation like this without much light maybe it hold the reflector underneath to try to kick in fill in the shadows in the eyes but normally and this is what I would be teaching normally strong backlight you would want to hold the reflector above because that's going to be the main source of illumination first if you're just trying to fill a tiny bit you hold the reflector down beneath just a little bit of phil and you were using silver right? So you have solids over solid silver all right, so what I decided is not to significantly different different between them it's all kind of acceptable but the fashion photographer and me like this one the one that's like really quiet and natural looking um if it were strong backlit it would be so bright behind her that I'd have to kick some light in to just not have that background just go start wrapping around your face so this one is okay as well what I ended up doing is re composing and in this case instead of having the sun which was in the other shots it was right here to this part of her head I stuck that the sun behind her head hoping to get like a little bit more glow around the hair recomposed a little bit and then I did photoshopped you want to see my photo shop you'll like it okay that's what I didn't photoshopped because this is what I would like to catch in reality why didn't photo shop is a ground a picture that I had taken of out of focus christmas lights guy took the picture out of focus christmas lights and I over laid on the picture and in photo shop I changed the blend mode too soft light if you don't know how to do that first of all that that dvd that I had in the swag bag has it on that but it's also on the three day creative life that it is done retouching as well but this is why I love backlight because I love when I can get actual lens flare but the day that we were shooting there wasn't enough light to actually do lens for so this is augmenting on a truly backlit day what I would try to get out to get some nice light on her face exposed for her face I don't care about the background I'm gonna let it go solid way it doesn't matter but notice in the areas that's not plain sky for example the horizon it makes a really nice effect because all of the light sources become out of focus gives me a nice bouquet looks really nice so this is probably what I would go for um again it wasn't exactly the situation that I wanted so it's kind of halfway between what I would do emma so I'm gonna leave it at that because I'm thinking I don't care about the background I care about the quality of light in the direction of light it looks pretty and eric's going no no I like there's clouds in the sky today it's backlit I want to see some of those clouds I want to do something that's actually showing those clouds and I'm like cares about clouds let's make it look dreaming all right so he's going to do his version so um what lindsay showed is awesome usually when you have that beautiful back life if there's no clouds in the sky like she mentioned you could take a reflector and oftentimes bounce enough light back to really kind of under exposed that background to see a little bit more detail. It was rough because we did have the clouds so she's over there like a draft and I'm thinking in my head like, okay, I guess he's a flash next like these clouds are gonna look awesome, so I was really kind of excited about this but that's honestly that's the joys of shooting on location I mean, last night we were we didn't want car two nights ago, we didn't want clouds when we were recording this and we got him today were like, we want andie in spring dance rain? Yes, we want clouds when we come out here and it's the most beautiful day like seattle's probably seen all summer so that's the joys of shooting outdoors and it's not always the crappiest light it might not just be the light that you were looking for that day and that constitutes crafty and another way um so it's neat that we're able tto you guys are tuning in for all these different parts because you may only have a saturday or sunday to go shoot on and you have to be able to get great image regardless of what you planned for so let's hop in here and we've got the same pretty model but now we're going to go ahead and augment with some flash um so the very first photo that I've got coming up here I've got my nikon d eight hundred and eighty five millimeter one point four just like lindsay was shooting so I got the same model the same lens and the same environment um I'm in full manual mode here so for me we can pause this here the first shot that I got was at one point four at I s so one hundred at one fiftieth of a second so I'm shooting pretty wide open at a pretty slow shutter speeds so you can see it's letting in a whole ton of light and the very first shot was cute artsy if I made this black and white and crank the contrast it could it could stand it right it could work but what I wanted is those clouds so I had to do something here to get some exposure back in those clouds so what I did is it just the camera a little bit take another shot and you'll see right here I went from f four to two point eight so basically I close down my aperture to full stops um to go toe to toe have two point eight that cut down two stops of light, which is good because now our models faces and over exposed, but the same time, we're kind of where you started your two point two. Yeah, my pictures were at the start were still seeing no sky, so I have to go a step further because I have to expose for that sky first to make sure that I get the detail in those clouds, we're gonna try something else here, take one more shot. Now, this is what we're working with, so I stayed at two point eight because I want that shallow depth of field does. He pointed out that when you have a shallow depth of field, when you're using a two point over a two point eight, your background goes out of focus really quickly. So you get that beautiful kind of diffused background look, that soft focus, which was what I was going for, but now, having closed down two stops and made my shutter speed a lot faster, you can see we're starting to get details in the clouds that's good, but look what happened to our model like she's, completely in the dark now and it's almost what my a v mode gave me to begin with the very first time. So her camera and I are on the same page except neither of us were right this time so she had to use exposure compensation and I'm gonna have to add a flash to make this right so what I did here is what lindsay did rather for me I think he's jumped on the flash I'm gonna hit play if it wants to play for us. Yeah, there we go. So here's like very quick side by side comparison. This is what we started with at one point four at one fiftieth of a second one hundred I s o two stops of light down by up in our closing down our aperture ah whole bunch more stops fifty probably two and a half more stops to get over to two point eight so here's where we are we were almost four, five stops overexposed to begin with and over here is now going to be our new base foundation to start building in some flash. So my goal when I'm shooting on location I know I want to expose for those clouds is the manually set my camera to expose for my environment first because I can't use a flash to go ahead light up the rest of the world but I know if she is dark and I get my ambient light where I want it I can use a flash to at least light her up so when you're using small flashes, you kind of want to think intelligently faras what you're lighting let your camera and your ambient light do most of the work for you and then just use the limited power you have in your small flash to kind of just like your subject so we're gonna hit play over here I'll show you how we're now start building up our model now that we have our background where we want it so we've got our sixty inch bounce umbrella right up there and I think we're going to go over that's a nice place to pause we're gonna go over the gear that I'm using right here so we have that sixty inch bounce umbrella that john brought over for me earlier you got it so lindsay is going to show us that and I have it in the bounce orientation I have the black cover over here on the back the light does not go through this black cover I see some people make the mistake sometimes of reading that oh okay that can shoot through this umbrella to so they just never take the black cover off you when this is on this is a bounce umbrella so the light hits this and is going forward but the reason I used it here is because I wanted to maybe do a headshot of this model and also do a full body shot so by having a sixty inch umbrella you can see how when it's on her it always almost covers all of lindsay and now imagine if you backed it up a little bit it's gonna have a nice big spread of soft light so it gives me the option to evenly light a tall model a photographer or anyone that I want to put in front of it and I'm controlling it with these guys up here so I have to send some kind of trigger over to my flash and that tells it to fire and I'm using the pocket wizard system these air the mini tt one and flex tt five units we covered them in the flash primer on day one and what these do is they communicate a signal from a camera to my flash and this is own controller on the top if you look closely here see the a b and c those are different zones or different groups of speed lights that I can set up and on the top it has manual motor automatic mode which would be teach, yell and on the base over here you have exposure compensation or that's how you would dial up and down your manual settings. So for me I put the flash on a light stand bounced into a sixty inch umbrella I turned on my zone controller and what I'm going to do is flip it over to manual mode and go ahead and just take a shot probably one eighth power just to kind of get like a feeler and see how much flash up what we have and then I'll adjust that up and down accordingly to light my model don't let this guy run there without that you're just running teo that's what his own controller is so important because it gives you that manual control you can see the full set up there and this is what happens when I turn on my flash again at one one eighth power it's an arbitrary number when you do this if you're shooting manual mode unless you're using a light meter, you're going to want to turn on your flash and take a shot but we're doing this in a very methodical way so that we only won if we set up our flash and she's over exposed we know we're not having to change a bunch of things we're only having to change our flash output because by keeping our camera emmanual this isn't changing no matter where my auto focus sensor point is doesn't matter my camera's not going to be giving me fluctuating exposures I know regardless that my background is going to stay the same every single photograph less of course the sun setting but we'll get to that in a second um so we lucked out we got our first shot it was good evenly exposed and again here's my manual camera setting so now we're able to evenly bounce her out with that background play a little bit more here now we're doing something else though because if you look at her she's a pretty tan girl I mean for living in seattle she had a good like a good shine to that skin it's summertime but what I want to do is she looked a little bit pale there, so I want to take this up a notch and I want to make her a little bit warmer at the same time too it gets really, really warm in the sun setting I mean there's a reason they call it golden hour, right? I mean, as soon as that sun gets down in the sky it's burning through a lot atmosphere and warms up a whole bunch so what I'm doing now is I'm taking my jealous the cto jell I'm gonna warm up my flash because I have a really warm background and I have a tan girl, but I hit her with a white flash so in comparison it's a white flash but are a mind is kind of seen it as a cooler light compared to the light that's exists out there, so by putting on that c t over color temperature gel it's one of the road correction gels, I'm gonna go ahead and warm it up so these jails correct for tungsten light indoors, like we did yesterday or in a church? But they also correct for that super warm light that you get outside because you see a lot of people going outdoors and they'd like to take shots at sunset on the beach or just sunset period anywhere in the world. And you kind of something's always off. When you look at those photos, their subject on the ground is all pure white. And then everything else is really orange and nice. So by putting that gel on there, everything kind of goes to the same color temperature, and you get a universal warm feeling and what not to do use here. Um, this is probably I think I probably used a full cut right here. So to a one half for a full cut. Pretty warm, because I mean, the sun's coming pretty warm, the lower it gets in the sky, the warmer your son gets so right before sunset, you're probably gonna want to add maybe a little bit more. Yeah, good question. Probably about a half for a full cup there. I want to make her look tan but not make her look like she just got out of, like, a spray tan. It was that easy to attach him so it's super quick because we are chasing daylight here, we don't have a lot of time to mess around. So it's, nice to have gear that just kind of gets up and goes with you. There you go. So now we look a lot warmer and she's balanced out a lot more with the background. So if you're sitting here in the studio looks atrocious on this tv, but hopefully you guys at home, it looks a little bit better on your monitors. And here this is lindsay's flashing fashion flair. She can't she can't be on set without making something like where a little bit so she's like, hang on wait, wait a minute, wait a minute, let me get this reflector started fanning and sure enough, the very next shot looked way cooler like, way more ah, a little more action and stuff in the static photo I had beforehand. So you saw a little bit earlier. Second, scroll over here and give you guys the comparison. There you go. You saw what that gel did that gel warm things up and now we've gone ahead and we've gotten a good photo where we can see the background. Okay, we've got her jelled flash here on our model so she's got a good skin tone that matches we've got all of our camera settings and flash setting so that we have a good exposure on everything and here's where I have a lot of fun shooting with manual mode because by back dial on my camera controls my shutter speed and everything remains constant now other than the setting sun right? So the ambient light is the only thing fluctuating the ambient light is going down as we speak because the sunset and just getting darker so with everything set up if I sit there and ride my shutter but now I can turn the lights up and down on the entire world so if I do what we did here in this next photo I could be like okay, we'll get a couple shots like this on the right I love him I love being able to see the sky and everything now I want something a little more area now I want that overexposure back look like okay, I like lindsey's shot now I want to get a photo like lindsey's what ideo I slowed down my shutter speed and now I get that background light over there but you'll notice another thing about the photograph is get back to him super intense wind is good so we've got our jails we've got a nice warm background what if I think like oh I like the shot that lindsay got with uh the background light with a blown out all I have to do is now slow down my shutter speed and I have control and I can get that same look but do you notice something different here with the background just kind of heavily heavily backlit we had a flat nice pleasing light on the face right when you add your flash now you can get that blown out background but now you control the direction and the quality of light on the models face too so it takes another step further you no longer have to be stuck with flat light on the back now you can use that light to shape toe add contour to really to find someone's face the warm up their skin tones and then just by dialing your shutter speed up and down you can go from light skies like this all the way to dark skies like I'm to show you here in a second so here we go one thirtieth of a second nothing else is going to change on my camera except for my shutter speed I'm gonna speed it back up again I'm going to get this photo right here and again I'm back upto one two hundred fiftieth of a second and now I see all the details in my sky I see that nice beautiful color saturation my work I love color you know lindsay's got flair we've got she everyone has a thing that just defines them one of the things that defines my style's a photographer is energetic vivid colors so for me I want the sky most of the time but if you're not you're jam maybe you just want to go with the overexposed look like lindsay prefers you khun do both of them really quickly with exposure compensation or with shutter speed when you're controlling you with manual camera settings so I think that there you go there's are side by side comparison so those were taken a fraction of a second apart from each other the one on the left is one thirtieth of a second the one on the right is one two hundred fiftieth of a second all of the things remain constant yet you have two entirely different stylistic photos so it's really cool because once you get this all dialed in and with a little bit of practice I mean you can run out there and really get a variety of looks in the five or ten minutes that we have right before sunset so it's really cool been able to walk away with a different variations more things to show your client more things to possibly print and sell or put on your website so perfect all right so I go ahead and in the same scene I see what he just got but I look behind him and the clouds are becoming bright pink and purple beautiful and so now my technique won't work anymore because here is the problem since before she was backlit but what I like now is the purple the other direction she won't be back what should be front lit and there's not enough light so this is this is what I end up getting if I use my normal approach so we're facing the opposite direction now the sun would be in front of her and this is what I get if I correctly exposed her metering off of her face because she's correctly lit but there's no sky in the whole point for me is that the purple clouds and so my exposure compensation will not help me in this instance there's nothing I can do is buy underexposed for the clouds I lose her by correctly exposed for her I lose the clouds so I'm like okay, I love my natural light but flash is going to win in this instance pretty my photos were totally looks like I got to do it but I have to do it my way because when I was watching the color was changing every couple of seconds but it was fast the color would pop up and it was going to be gone so for me I don't want to have my camera on manual and try to find the right exposure and I didn't want to have to put my flash and manual and have to guess what the correct exposure is so what I did is say ok what I want to do is make those clouds look good so before when I took my aperture priority and exposure compensation I dialed it to the right which let everything up and made her look brighter in this instance I'm doing the opposite gonna dial it's left to make everything darker because I want to see those clouds so when I do so take my shutter speed from a thirtieth of a second okay looking better too one two hundred the second so I can see some of that purple but now I have to like her since I don't feel as comfortable thank you um but I don't feel comfortable with manual so I don't have toe figure it out and gas I used the system that I usually use which is the six hundred artie's with the radio transmitter and so what allows you to dio when you turn it on I heard you already have it set up so that my flashes channel a and it's talking to channel a right here what I'm clicking on is the ability to adjust my flash compensation so right now I have it reading ah third of a stop brighter I can dial it down to minus the third minus two thirds what I end up doing is just let me just put it on correctly exposed no compensation zero and take a shot so this is what I ended up getting bye underexposed my background using africa priority and exposure compensation dialed down and then I just put the flash with no compensation let's just see what it looks like and so the camera's pretty darn smart because since I'm not trying to compensate by dialing the flash down more suddenly I just want her to be correctly lit it it correctly lights her and so I ended up doing just let me a little bit less wouldn't want to look too flashed. Um this is the look that I was going for if you wanted her to be brighter, you dial it up if you want it to be darker, you dial it down um and then I asked eric toe add a reflector and maybe to fill in a little bit of these shadows. I think this is the shot that I prefer, though, and you guys will be able to make that decision in a second and just so you know that color in the sky there, I think I had that color from maybe a minute and so for me personally for the way that I works they only had one minute to get that color I was going to use what I'm comfortable with, say, make background darker put the flash without compensation shoot because that's what I'm comfortable with and so he had a reflector it filled in a little bit, so same effect his was backlit mine was just trying to get the color of the sky, but fundamentally we're doing the same thing I did a t t o t t l and he did it manual same approach, same technique, different approaches so I think we're both we're both white balance flash, right? Because that was a good one. Yeah, the white balance flash gives you pretty much a white light kind of ah starting point for your white balance that's why her model skin tones look perfect there and it also allows those natural colors to the background cloud because if she had done a different white balance it would've changed the color of those clouds as well as the color of the skin and that's why you were like, oh, crap here, eric, help me with this lets go and I was like reflector lights turn around and I mean the clouds were incredible that day so we think it the backlit how were quite wanted but he walked away with two killer looks great alright pass off to you for a different situation we see if there's any questions on that those are probably in a different section now wait, we got a bunch here in studio audience go go for it. I was watching that you choose to shoot your flash bouncing out of the umbrella instead of through it for a bigger light source. Is that why you make that choice? The reason I did for this situation is I wanted a little bit more contrast, so I want how your contract I would be right, so the reflective there would give me higher contrast. Um and so the shadows would be a little bit more, a little bit darker and more contrast on your face, because when I was looking at her without that light, it was really flat and I wanted to pop and I wanted the color to poppy wanted the whole photo to pop. If I were doing shoot through, it would be softer and more diffused. Yeah, so the light source itself will remain the same when you shoot through, she said, it will be softer because you could bring it closer like we discussed yesterday if you try to bring it closer and a bounce. Orientation it's going to hit you with the stick before anything else. So, um she, like, likes you said the contrast was wonderful for it too. And having the balance, I was able to keep it farther out of the frame. It gave me more options for composition. Where if you have a shoot through version, it'll just bring it in really close and I could get in the shot too. So going into it, I knew I wanted the space needle in one or two of the photos, but I knew I need a different compositions for this presentation. So a lot of times we shoot for what? Our final purposes that's. Why I want to leave room. I love the way I live the sun sets and I love what you did with the gel sometimes is not practical. You don't have it or like you, the light's changing so fast you need to go from a half their quarter with that color checker. Um, allow you to like you a localized, um, color on balance on her. Well, I would like a radio filter in light room or okay, so you see that same warm glow on the subject without having tio go out, which I think I wanted you to know that I wasn't with me all I would stays in arguments answers yes ok so what do you think it's you can't do in one shot you'd have to do with the uh there's an adjustment brush where you could get the correct weight exposure and then paint that adjustment russian this is something we'll actually be downloading something kind of like that um it's not like you could take the correct white balance um from that color checker and would apply globally you'd have to paint and selectively billy are you man I'd have is if you're sick if you have the gel as faras time it probably is kind of similar time to take the shot what use you just put it on but I know what you're saying and yes you could and I have definitely done that um especially for the example that I'll use that have had a job where I had somebody in an environment where there is tungsten hitting them I overpowered and and bounce it as much as I could right then but I was in a hurry my hair and makeup ran late that whole thing ok so they had a little bit of time and it was still a little bit too yellow in the hair and on the shoulder so what I did is I double process or what I did is basically took that reading and so I painted in the correct white balance um on the hair so it's same concepts tomorrow is going she's gonna double process of file just like that so we can do one to fix and then we need to do maybe if we have time to a creative double process to so remind us tomorrow oh, and I would actually creative process for that um cloud shot to make those clouds like crazy colors yeah that's what? I would be awesome. Uh ed photos asked when you use a warming gel and you white balance with the great card just the camera try to remove the gel effect. Yes, well, it depends what is hitting the great card so, um if you are you have the light hitting your subject and like we discussed earlier, you want to kind of figure out what your main light source is you would aim the color checker to the light and it will try to balance for that. Um so in that case you're adding a warming gel teo the person's face and then you're getting a great card and then if you do the little drop her on there and white balance for that great card is going to try to neutralize all the work you did with your gel so that's why it's neat because the color checker has multiple neutral swatches from a cool to a warm setting that are designed for portrait so you can collect you can select the normal great cards watch and it would neutralize all the warming that you did with your jell o or you could get one of the other ones and it'll go ahead and warm it up without changing tent or really distorting skin tone and you're still gonna get that same effect so one of the main there's two fold that we did the gel one to get a warmer skin tone on the face and to to bring the light on the face and like temperature more in line with out of the surrounding area so you don't get that bluish white on the face and really warm here brings them closer together so it looks more natural so yes, how about one more question from the internet before going to the next video some good all right rene is says thank you I am learning so much I wonder though how would you attempt to do the sunset lighting when working with moving subjects such as toddlers at the beach you have to wait well so since I don't usually shoot flash at the beach at sunset um it's a different question ok? Yeah so um I would then have someone kind of walk around holding it um especially if you have little ones and things and you're photographing with a light stand you're gonna want someone manning that light stand so the kids don't run into it hurt themselves uh in that case I would have an assistant or a friend, or a friend of the family, or maybe the father or mother holding the light stand, and then I would use bounce umbrella, like we did in this application, because it gives you a broad throw of light, and I would kind of pull it back a little bit. We touched on the inverse square law some, but the farther you get your subject away from your light source, the more gradual that light source falls off. So if I had it by umbrella here and the toddler was here and then moved over a foot, my exposure would dress sickly change. Where if I have the light stand farther away, one of family members holding it, the kid could run around in a large area, and the exposure wouldn't change if I was on manual or if we were on t ell, it would vary the exposure for the movement of the kid. Um, so I would do that always have someone manual ight stand and then just, uh, pull the light back far enough away. So the kid has a stage to just run wild on seeing captures from fun, real moments without, you know, kind of trying to take him down, so I'm kidding don't take your children and and I'm probably thinking, too, if maybe I had a model or a subject with a not a, not a toddler or something. What was going for more, just, uh, photographs of their face. But I'm moving around a lot. I don't want to. I would probably just use the flash bender off camera. Um, if it's not intending to be full length because I wouldn't get, probably wouldn't get the quality of light full length that I would want. But if I'm going more for mid length or headshot, I would just hold it and shoot that way.

Class Description

Short on time? This class is available HERE as a Fast Class, exclusively for Creator Pass subscribers

Photographers constantly search to capture that decisive moment. Unfortunately, that moment seldom happens under ideal photographic conditions. In this class you'll learn how to quickly overcome all of the most common crappy lighting scenarios. With the aid of these simple techniques and minimal equipment, you'll be empowered to walk into any setting and emerge with beautiful imagery.


Victor van Dijk

Besides all the more or less 'technical, theoretical stuff', the greatest thing I'm taking away with this outstanding course is the plain joy and FUN of trying all sorts of (crappy) lighting solutions!! Speaking for myself, and I suppose also many others, as an 'advanced beginner', I strongly tend to end up to my eyeballs in all technical nitty-gritty, gear 'n' stuff, that I totally mis out on all the sheer FUN of trying out, and often 'muddling through' all kinds of lighting setups! Such a joy to see the fun exchange between Lindsay and Erik! Really catchy. There should be more classes and courses like this, redirecting students to what it's actually all about: sheer creativity and fun! Having said that, Lindsay and Erik demonstrate that there is hardly any crappy light situation that can't be overcome by creative thinking. And more often than not, it doesn't have to be high-tech or difficult! They really showed an exhaustive list of crappy light situations AND their solutions. And I highly commend Lindsay and Erik for their fun energy, and even more important, pragmatism and frankness. I recommend this course to ANY photographer AND videographer, no matter 'beginner' or 'highly advanced'! Lighting is the basis of it all, and most of the time, it isn't perfect...! I highly re

Julie Addison

I thought I understood about light before I took this course. How wrong could I be? I have re-watched this course over and over and I just love it. Quality of light, direction of light - so many crappy light situations. Learning how to actually set a white balance instead of purely relying on the camera presets and learning colour correction by the color checker was also invaluable to me. This course is so affordable. I would recommend it to anyone from beginner to advanced as you will get more out of it than you think. I love the way Lindsay and Erik work together. No right or wrong way - just showing the differences in their styles to accomplish the same end result. Well done guys. Now to have more courses by Erik would be great. Again, can't' thank creative live enough and Erik and Lindsay for this course. Love, Love, Love It!!!!

a Creativelive Student

I hope I can tune in tomorrow. Erik and Lindsay, you guys were awesome today. Some of the things I needed some refreshing on but you definitely had a way of educating. I thought the demos were great and really validating. Light is a difficult thing to keep on your good side, especially with me, someone who primarily uses ambient and available lighting scenarios. This course is great and I'm planning to tune in tomorrow because I really want to see what you have in store for outside. Best of luck guys!! -Sim

Explore More Free Classes


Enjoy the free classes? Get 2000+ more Classes and watch it anytime, anywhere.

Get The Pass