Softlighter Demo with John Cornicello
We have our wonderful and delightful mr john cornyn cello who is here in the house they always love having john around thank you. You've assisted and helped out with a ton of our instructors here you've taught a couple classes yourself in as well so we thought who better to demonstrate some of the year that were that we want to use you okay? Yeah there's going to come in and do this lighting demo here and I'm bringing in equipment I actually use this isn't a sponsor demo this time this is john teaching what does john take it away? Yeah. So my favorite lighting modifier my desert island modifiers called the faux tech soft later, um it's uh someone's got the slide show for me this foe tech soft letter comes in three sizes thirty six inch forty six inch in sixty and shape mostly used the sixty inch and it has two models with eight millimeter and selling seven millimeter chef sizes. We'll talk about that in a little while as we move on here um it's a multipurpose umbrella I'm going to pull...
up the small win here so we could show you so it's it's a typical reflective umbrella it can also be issued through umbrella by taking the backing off of it and then it becomes a diffused umbrella and daniel, if you want to help me with this for a second stretch this out over the theme umbrella and this is the way I use it most often he's hooked on here so you get the idea of how this work you need to finish this one up because we have a one set up what's nice about this is it works like an umbrella there's no speed ring dated to attach it to your lights there's some exclusive things to the soft lighter it has ten segments instead of aids so it's around her light which affects the catch lights in the eyes and the models with the eight millimeter shift the shift actually comes apart so that you could bring the light and close to your subject if you want to hearing me that again weaken once we have this set up you hold that for second shift here on screws takes a second and then we can bring the light in without having this here we could bring the light and as close as possible and it becomes like a big soft box rocked the bank so what's important about bringing the lighting close is the quality of light don't think in terms of quality as good in bed they give it as hard and soft here we could see that there's the line between the shadows in the highlights could be a hard line or it could be a soft diffuse line a big light is a slough light the closer to the subject the bigger the light is in relationship, the subject in the more graduated the phil is between the light and dark areas of the subject. So it's, all relative, we can jump to the keynote here when you have a small light, such as I have here, right in front of the subject, you'd see that the light rays come straight at the subject and you get shadows around the nose and the eyebrows and the like. But if we make the light much bigger, the light starts to wrap. Of course, you know, light travels in straight lines, and it doesn't really wrap, but the latest coming from so many directions, it feels like it's wrapping around the subject. The largest site light source, becomes its own phil, as the rays, coming from all different directions, noticed, they keep saying in relationship to the subject, if we're to move the big light back fifteen to twenty feet, it becomes a smaller light compared to the subject and harder, producing darker shadows, as you can see here. So the light rays come from one direction when the light is smaller and further away. Uh, we also talk about the inverse square law, so that's, when we bring in the lights here, if we look here, I've set up a fifty four inch white seamless backdrop, I'm going to set the subject about two, three feet in front of the backdrop and the light about two, three feet away and that's going to determine how light or dark the background becomes the the inverse square so it law says that the intensity light falls off with the square of distance if you move the light back twice the distance from the subject, the subject receives a quarter of the amount of light it's a loss of two stops that seems kind of confusing at first, you know you're doubling the light way? Is it going to only one quarter of the amount of light? Hopefully this administration here I'll give you an idea. You know, if we have a point source of light like a candle flame lighting rectangle, we double the distance it has to cover four times the size of the original late. So that's, why it's one quarter of the late instead of half one thing we have to keep in mind, though that late the square inverse square look probably is to a point source of light something we rarely run across in the studio. Usually we're putting modifiers on our lights like spotlights or umbrellas or soft boxes or anything like that, and when we do that light becomes more parallel coming out that blights modified it doesn't fall off his quickly in the studios they said we really have a point source and a union a camera flash but so there's one really big secret to the inverse square law and that is you don't have to remember formula just remember the closer your latest to your subject the darker the background is going to be as you move the light away this subject than background will start getting the same amount of light so we can take this white backdrop and make it white, gray or black by moving this late in and out from the subject. So another thing you may be able to see here is when I have the subject standing here the light it's not pointing directly at them like this I haven't feathered across the front of them so that the lights going come across their face and it's going to fill itself from the other side and let's go to a de most here the latest pointed forward of the subject not directly at them the fil card is going to be brought out and here for this demo here I'm going to use the silver reflector normally for portrait's I'd probably use a white reflector, but I want to go a little hotter and little more contrast beyond the subject here, so for headshots I'm going to bring in the silver reflector like this and you get the light on the camera in there so lighting direction we can talk about broad lighting versus short lighting, broad lighting eliminates the side of the face that's nearest the camera so if I'm looking this way and the lights coming from this side it's going to light up my ear, the side of my face, my nose, it's going toe face look wider or broader short lighting is when I turn here, the lights coming from this side and now it's lighting the short side of my face with this side of the face going into shadow short lighting tends to be most flattering for most subjects, we did have a question I'm grabbing my questions way had celtic lady who was wondering didn't quite catch one of the products that you're talking about thie umbrella you just showed and a soft bucks that was the first time what are the actual like manufacturing names? This a low tech, low tech stuff? Later, it's folks like us a dot com perfect photo usa that's p h o t k, so lighting direction if you're watched any of zacarias his classes here on creative life he's always saying I tze to the light, I modify that a bit and say nose to the light and eyes back to the camera, but it's the same feeling another friend of mine, rolando gomez, taught me that the lite is your friend in the cameras your friend keep your nose pointed between them so if you keep your nose pointed between the camera and the light, you're going to get the soft roy short lighting. Once you turn your way face away from the light it's going to go into shadow and give you a much different look so let's bring some demonstrations on here uh, we showed you already how to set up the soft later. But you want to bring that one out again? Weaken. I could show you here we're just stretch this out over the ten panels notice on the smaller ones. It just clips over the end on the sixty inch ones what you will have set up back here. There's also some velcro on the site that's only on the larger one. So once we have this set up, we could take it and put it on our light. So I just take it, put it in the umbrella shaft again. No speed rings are needed for this and then this fire proof material here. Get stretched over the head of the flesh, get it straightened out here and then we can take the shaft off like we did before and that's basically what it is involved in setting up the soft lighter so let's, take this one off set so what I want to show here is some rapid fire head shots sometimes they have to go on location maybe to a law firm or dentist officer like I'm going to do five, ten, twenty head shots and I may only have safe five minutes with each subject I'll set this up like this so danielle, if you want to come out here I'm gonna move this out of the way again as you're so we have the large soft lighter here I have it set just a little bit above knows level so that shani shadows will cast down but I don't expect to have much shadows in this sudden and this one here lets do the first shot here is just the one light you know? So we have the white background I'm gonna frame up danielle in here on chin down a little bit push your chin out toward me a little bit right there nice soft smile looks great and we see this we have a kind of contrast to here if we can go to the light room now and from here I'm going to bring in this reflectors sorry cameras this is going to block out a little bit let's turn the modeling light on and you see when we bring in the reflector here I'm bringing it also in front of the person so light is coming off the umbrella across daniel's face but it's also coming in hitting the silver reflector here and bouncing back in as you said I'm using silver reflected today for the head shucks I want a little more sparkle in there normally on portrait that probably is a white phil so let's see what happens when we change the feel here and get you back in the frame there bringing those tor me just a little more right there's perfect then one two and three and let's compare those two and see how we brought in the phil so we noticed that the background is almost white here which is what I was looking for if I wanted to be a little brighter I could bring the background a little closer to danielle or if I just want to do vary the background we can also take it and just move one side so this's catching more of the lights or daniel from back onto your spot here that's great normally oppose people as we're saying the short light with their nose facing toward the light I set up the light on the left side because I've heard from different studies that most people prefer the left side of their face so we'll start out that way but in this lighting setup it's kind of a flat lighting for headshots who could probably have people point different directions so this time daniel and what your face straight on to me that's great and now even turn your face away from the light a little bit but come back to me a little right there just watch the hair by your side of your face that's perfect one two and three and now another from shooting women I may have your pose with their body and their head going in different directions so again point your body this way legs about shoulder length apart drop your shoulder and toward me a little bit turn your face back towards light giving your eyes back to me and I may move it to the other side of the frame here soon now to give a little more room around her that's it beautiful smile on your face even more into the light but always still beckon me that's great right there drop the front shoulder just a little bit more let's see how those air looking so you can see the latest kind of flat but it'll work with people pointing noses in all different directions here so do we have any questions on this quick set up? So we've got one here from wendy dcm, she says started working with continuous light always used to work with natural light. So can you make sure that as you're going through to show exactly where to place the lights, how close to the subject how high it will be as I said I had the late set up just a little bit above knows little so if there is any shadow cast it's going cast downward as you could see the lightest feathering across the subject so any shadows we're not falling on the background we're getting a pretty clean white background behind her uh let's see what else was they asked their light is about two or three feet away we could see it's a very large light here how you sometimes stated people judge light his stand where the subject's going be hold your hand out in front of your face if you can block the light that's a small harsh light it's going to give hard shadows when I put my hand here it doesn't do anything to block this so I know this big light is going to come with light wrapping all around me. So does that help that and as I said because of the inverse square law the closer I bring the light to the subject the darker the background is going to be so that's just a balancing act you have to put up when you set up your set up and see where things are so if I want to do background to go even lighter I'd probably move the light about another foot away if I wanted that background to go dark and almost black, I'd bring the late in justice close to the subject as possible and keep it from hitting the backdrop so we're going to change over here again. You if you want to help me here to using the same light, but in a more of a beauty light set up, so I'm going to take it off the straight stand, and we're gonna put this on a boom arm and let's, put a sandbag on this stand could turn throat on this leg. Okay, so, let's, bring this down. We'll start out without it. This is the clam show lighting setup that we often talk about in classes. Here. Get this out of the way. That gun so it's slide into place here, and I'm gonna bring this down a little bit that's. Great. So if you want to get into your spot there on, probably have to stop down a little bit on this one here. Let's, do a quick test first chin up, just a hair turned down a little bit. Great split the difference and exposure is still pretty decent on here. So this is kind of a beauty set up that convulsed will be used for headshots, and you'll see that there's a lot of shadows under the nose and under the eyebrows and under the chin. So to get rid of that, we're going to bring in a reflector here now, that's, that's gonna be good, flock that on and here I'm going to turn it over first and show we're using there's reflector armed to hold the reflector here there's various models available from different manufacturers I happen to like this one because you get the lite standard touches in the center some of them cantilevered off you have to put weights on him and worry about him falling over this one goes right in the center and I can adjust this to give just the field I want this one I believe is from photo flex we'll bring this up and I'm using the white reflector here let's compare how that changed between these two that's great perfect and you should see the shadows have opened up under the face where more beauty look some people may prefer a silver a brighter look so we're gonna come in I'm gonna get a a silver popping pop up five on one reflector that's just going to sit on top of that can you see this light reflected in here so it's always good to ask your subject that they can see the light reflected if they know what's coming up and filling their eyes so now go to another one that's great push your face toward me just a little bit beautiful turn your nose tore me a little more great you could see how that's filled in now a lot of the stuff I'm showing you has been around for a while this foe tech soft later I just looked up the records I bought it in october two thousand one s o so let's time here and maybe bring in some newer equipment so I'm gonna bring in another piece here that steps this up a little bit it's called yeah perfect point to ask the question here from a couple different people in the chat room, wondering said I read some amazon reviews about the product and I heard a few people commenting about the fragility and quality of the soft, lighter material you speak about the production and quality of the item itself. I say this because I'm an on location photography photographers, the wear and tear is a problem obviously if you've had it for a while it's I have put on the petition I'm not a super I'm not a lot of location attending in the studio most often, but I have not had any issues with it. I've heard from from people that when they open and close it, sometimes the the ribs of the umbrella you need to make sure they're all straight they can cross over each other because it's ten ribs instead of eight so I've heard that too, but I haven't run into that as they said I've had this one since october of two thousand one it's still going strong, perfect let's see we have another question actually that's while we're on the same subject petrick pup do you keep the modeling lights on with pro tech soft lighter or somebody else who mentioned potentially like melting if you leave it on or if it touches the bold or anything like that if it touches the bulb I can see it's scorching as we showed before was pulling the other soft later here it has this nomex fireproof materials stretching material around it so so I have actually had this touch the modeling light once or twice and it's scorched to a brown but I've never had to catch fire or anything like that but usually want to pull it back us far onto the light as possible so that's not something I've run into a they have set other soft boxes on fire but that's another story is a badge of honor yes you have your model science modeled standing there goes this late above me supposed be on fire that's great when they notice it gina beef erred cute it's please spell photo our photo flex he h o t o f l e x exactly how it sounds yes and then is it a five in one or how's it named if somebody wants to find it on well that's that's just the holder for the for this so let's take this off for a second I'm gonna pop this it's we're not talking about the reflector itself we're talking about the arm for it so way could take those off it so here is the arm that that that attach is too and it's adjustable you know, if you have a sixty inch reflector they can go out smaller reflector comes in as I said, what I like about it is that this slides along here they keep reflector arm holders I've used its only stuck at one end and they can deliver off and they fall over so that's why I like this one. So said it's from photo flex and it's called the d l dash holder d as in dog ellison larry holder perfect photo flex d l holder so go ahead and check that out if you like and then maybe one more question from murder does the faux text soft, lighter wrap around the actual strobe bold? Maybe if we can somehow pull that out here and pull off the region material so people can break inside how wait so as you can see, I have this pulled out back behind the stroke head here and the strobes in here filling in the entire umbrella um I'm using speed atran equipment and I'm old school I've been using speed to transfer thirty years or so what I like about them is the large flesh to about front that really fills in the umbrella sometimes if you're using a camera flash which will work in the photo techs off lighters the camera flesh kind of just fills in a little part of the umbrella because it has a flat front on it it might help to maybe use this stuff in diffuser or something like that in there so the the light would fill the hold umbrella but basically it goes through the umbrella shift stick this nomex part behind the light and then wrap it around again that's another way to put it together and we don't want to put together on the floor daniel I'm gonna have you come out here again and we're going to bring in a newer piece of gear it's actually been around for a little while uh but westcott just started distributing it and it's called the eye lighter it's become really popular and gives this great catch light in the bottom of the eyes got that so why don't you hop into place there and tell me is that getting all completely filled with light? I'm gonna bring it up you can a little more I feel kind of centered I'm going to come around to the other side and I went to coming to look here and see that the whole silver area here is filled in with light from the soft later above that's another thing about the sixteen inches off leiter will fill this we can use smaller modifiers like a beauty dish with the eye lighter but they tend to toe only like a smaller area of the eye lighter and bring a more up late where this one kind of wrapped the light around so let's see if the exposure stays the same on this come back to stand on your mark is still look like the film like the soft lighters filled in the eye letters filled ok let me see your eyes here restriction forward just a little bit that's great one more like that on let's take a look at what we get here so here you can see the telltale line under the eye I'm going to stop down just half stop here I'm good shooting at faa and I'm going to go to f nine a third of a stop and can push your hair back on this side perfect perfect and beautiful smile it's great here let's see how this looks so here you can see underneath the eye there's this great little curved reflector and that's coming from the westcott I later ok? We didn't really talk about camera height when we're talking about some of the positions before so I tend to send my camera height at about between the nose and the eyes about your level on someone I like to shoot straight into him I know some people like to shoot from above but I think that tends to diminish the subject a little bit and some shoot from a little below and I think that kind of makes people look hadiya pretentious and you're looking up their nostrils daniel's been a great subject here a lot of times when someone comes in, the first thing do is pull back and pull back and give themselves a double chin to get rid of that its way even asking daniel to kind of push your face forward a little bit and down with the chin a little bit and that just stretches out the next come the chin up just slightly so that's the basic to head shop things that I used the soft lighter for from here I think we're ready to maybe look att student a group of people with the same light here and we're going to take all the stuff back here down so let's move this out of the way a wonderful group of people coming in teo help model for us we have some folks who are joining us these air all creative labs steph folks who you may have seen before or may be new to you way have some wonderful people want to come on out yeah, we have jen nelson cheese the best you may have seen her on uh kind of gloucester, ma'am sure none of you have ever heard of her and of course the wonderful arlene evans who is just the nicest person in the world yes I'm changing lines is out now and and what what lens you're changing from I'm gone from the seventy two two hundred four to the twenty four to one to fly that for for the group so yeah they're going to take the background out and I'm going to take it moves the light out here so try not to hit anyone in the head with this that's good so we're going to use the wall is our background here as her back drop here so we're gonna come in about a foot or so in front of the wall I'm sure and I'm gonna be here with you yes we're gonna get rushed in here I'm not used to being tethered so if I trip and go flying across the floor that's we'll save me way always talk about the floods and the classes here but what do you do when you're on location that's where I brought in a reflector here that's a frame and a fabric over it works just like a deflect but it's portable um daniel if you want to bring me the reflector holder right there with the red tabs on it so basically yeah that comes collapsed and stretches out on then you stretch the fabric across it this is here is a better thirty nine by thirty nine that's a thirty nine by seventy two and just that's a way of getting the flats on the road with you and where do you get something like that through these air also from photo flex but westcott makes a scream gym, which is a very similar idea and this probably other manufacturers to write so again I'm going to take the light here and on his skim it across the subjects and this time I'm actually going to use the meter I believe it's on my camera case over there so what I use the meter mostly for is not really for exposure but to see for consistency so I'm going to take readings across the faces here let's give me a five six and on that side it's foreign a third so I'm gonna bring the late and so the lower this way who may be new to a light meter? You're basically just reading how much light is recalling almost this an incident meter, which is saying so I'm still at five six on this side over here good went down just a little bit so I'm going back the light up and then we'll take a shot and see how close the meter is. We were shooting a deaf nine before, so I'm coming down to five six everyone coming a little closer together, but but stagger your looks a bit now you're you're great that's it perfect and lens cap so used to the seventy two, two hundred that usually doesn't come off the camera so mein auto focus mode here, get everyone lined up to and let's take one and see how we did and we're getting a little bit of shadow here and I'm going to go bring up the light power just a little bit so from the power pack here I'm going up one, two, three, four clicks one stop of light I'm gonna pop the flash to dump the what was in there and make sure we're set to go for the next one and I'm going to go to about half six, three here everyone take a step forward have stepped forward perfect everyone's looking great and engage with the camera. Ross says his great smile on there and kind of come a little bit forward and turn yourself into the light a little more perfect and let's bring that up on the screen and we could see we have a pretty decent light across everyone no one's blown out and again so that's three bigs, different setups we've done with the same one single light so let's see if there's any questions on that? First of all, we had one from pieman best who wants to know what is the name of the portable? The flat? Um, I know that westcott calls there's a scream, jim, I'm not sure what photo flex calls there's reflector it's a reflectors um screen or frame that's called a frame okay, so let's move that out of the way so it's not blocking you beautiful on dh then a good question would this sort of technique is something that you would use when you were shooting children who might be a little bit more mobile? I think so because it's a it's a large light and it spreads out quite a bit that is supposed to a small camera flesh but as I say, you could put a camera flash in here so I think this would be a great for kids do we mean he's now? Unless they want to stay here in smiling thank you so much. I do have a couple more questions, but I just wanted let you guys go thank you for being a part of it. Thank you. Thank you. A couple more questions they have from bill. What soft letter would I use with flash instead of strokes? Because these air studio strobes if you're using speed lights what would produce a speed light through flow tech makes one now that's very similar to this but it comes with a bracket to touch. This destroyed to the issue here is getting strove into it so regular flesh had could work with this but you're going to need to get a bracket that touches to the late and has an umbrella shift in it and again, most of the companies like westcott in photo flex and like make that bracket and I believe photo now offers a soft lighter with that bracket cost a little more but the brackets included very nice, very nice let's see, we've got a delta dave forty for one other one to know how portable is the eye lighter what what tools are needed to assemble it ok, so let's take a look at the eye lighter there no tools needed to assemble it it comes apart and together by unscrewing these pieces here this lifts off the fabric comes off, you can stretch these out and pull it apart and it collapses into a bag that's about six inches by by eighteen inches or so I actually didn't just to take it down to bring it here I just put it in the back of the car as is that weighs practically nothing so you can see way ticket off the stand here it's a very lightweight piece of equipment but it can come apart if you want to but again I'm mostly a studio person, so I decided to leave it together all right let's say let's keep going we've got a couple other questions here uh when you do see em again wants to know whether you can do this group shot with continuous light as well, would you still use something like this with continuously I've never tried continuous light in the soft later it's not that deep. I don't know how you get a bunch of fluorescent bulbs in there. I wouldn't use it with tungsten because it be too hot. L leads or not, it's something that would go in there though there's the new led lights that look like stroke heads that may possibly work. I've not used any of those yet, so I don't know, but I tend to be a fan of stroke because of the power and the control. It offers a question from somebody from facebook. What is the recommended size of a soft box and umbrella for these kind of scenarios? I like the bigger life, as I said the close of the subject, the bigger the lady in relation to the subject, the softer the light is this allows me to come in close to be super soft. If I want a little harder light, I can bring the light further away and become smaller. If I start with a smaller light, I'm kind of more restricted that can't can't getting close enough to make it big, so I started started out with the sixty inch slough later, I had the forty kick in the thirty six, but I can't remember the last time I actually used them. Yeah great one kind of from the beginning robert poe is wondering whether you can elaborate a bit more about when the face should point in the same direction as the shoulders and when they should point in opposite sure so if imposing men tend to have their body and their face going the same direction so if that's the camera there and the lights here I'll have them facing toward the light and turned into the camera and that gives a strong masculine pose which also works for women for women you can also do it more of a beauty pose where they're going to come from this side turn the face toward the light and noise back to the camera and it just gets things going in different directions that also helps maybe with older subjects that have some loose skin on the neck because it's stretching the neck a little bit and lean into the camera and be friendly and engaging and look good for the head shots some of the things I've been using here uh is using of a three legged thing tripod and arkham honorable and I really like the arkham ennoble because the ball stays still and the camera earth rotates around it as opposed to other mano balls where the cameras can deliver it out so I just feel it has a little more control over what I'm doing here with this ball it's called anarchists responsible p zero I believe and on top of that, I get it a peak designs camera clip as way quick release, because it also matches the quick release that's on my belt so I could move the camera from tripod to belt tend to not use tripods all that much, so I got the belt because in the studio I often put the camera down to adjust the light and forget where you put the camera. So this way I could keep the camera with me as they move along. Um, for white balancing here way, use the next buddhist and we can show you how to do the white balance. So to do away balance, I'm going to take the expo disc and attach it to my lens goes on like a filter. I have to turn the lens to manual focus because it's it's not going to be able to focus on the camp on on the light, and then I'm going to take a picture of the late I understand where my subjects usually are, and now get this white image on the back of the camera. I'll go into my menus to custom white balance and I'll pick this image say yes, I want to use it, and then I'll set my white balance to custom and that's how I set my white balance. Wait already showed the photo flex reflector in the eye lighter um some other things that using the studio their fans the reflector arms light stands um you have straight stance we're going on the road the c stands or a little more difficult to transport but if you can I have someone helping you. If you have assistance they're much better to use and we could put this like the sand eggs on those uh we showed you the boom arm and I do a lot of self portrait with a remote trigger. Uh I think there's one over there we can show that we have a couple of seconds here. Um a lot of times on facebook people ask me how I do remote focus from I tell portrait and that's what? This here device here it's from han l h a h n e l and this plugs into the camera on the side and this I hold on there just a radio control and that fires the substance, the shutter on the camera so I could do my self portrait ce any questions on some of the little miscellaneous skier? We have no italiana who was wondering if you could talk about the pink trigger picture in europe on your camera who's it by and, uh like weather so we're triggering the lights wirelessly with the pocket wizard pocket words, usually black. Last year they came out with pinking yellow ones like we went with one of these because it gives the subject something to look at the camera. I used to shoot a lot of dance schools and, you know, you have little kids trying to get all their attention there, telling the look at the camera, look at the pink thing on top of the camera I've been using pocket wizards for many years there many triggers out now. When I started, there weren't so that's why I'm in the pocket was it system but there's a poll buff, cyber sinks and probably a dozen others in their old work really? Well, so perfect. Maybe one last question here, gina, be freed on one of the people wanted to know if you're going on location to do head shots. Wouldn't based equipment when you absolutely I want to have. Well, this is basically what I would take. I would take the fifty four inch ruler seamless with those background stand the soft lighter of silver reflector camera and tripod and light stands and that's that's a basic thing that works really well for me and it's. Pretty well, portable very nicely, yes, I said it. Fulls up like an umbrella where you don't have to worry about the soft box in the speed rings and stretching them in, getting the speed rings put together. And, you know, sometimes the soft bucks takes a few minutes to put together and take apart. Love it. All right, well, I want to say thank you very much for coming in and showing us a little bit of the gear people obviously love. You're still working. People find you corner, cello, dot com, and if you look under blog's under john's blogger, cover some of the stuff in there. It's, more of a block for photographers about some of the equipment. So take a look at that and