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Class Introduction

Lesson 1 from: Introduction to Flash for Children and Family Images

Mike Hagen

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Lesson Info

1. Class Introduction

Lesson Info

Class Introduction

I'm excited to be here to talk about introduction to Flash for children and family portraits. I think you're going to learn a lot today, well I don't think, I know you're going to learn a lot today. I always pack my classes full of practical, realistic tips, tricks and skills that you can all apply immediately. So, today's class is all about kids. All about families, and I don't have to necessarily have to talk about the why. Why do we photograph those things? But I'm going to because I love people, I love photographing kids, I love photographing parents, I love photographing those life stages. Photographing kids and families well is an important skill. And it's important because you're documenting a place in a space in time for someone. So as a photographer, a lot of you watching today, maybe you're an amateur photographer, or maybe you're getting your professional photography career just started. You're going to get a lot of requests from people to photograph their kids and their fam...

ilies. It's incumbent upon you to learn how to do this well, so that the photos you create are cherished memories for those moms and dads and kids and grandkids and great grandkids. These photos last forever. I was just going through photos in my office the other day, looking at photos of my sister and I when we were kids, looking at a photo of my wife and I when we were dating, before we we wife and husband. We were looking at photos of my kids and they just bring back so many great memories. So well done photos are important. And that's what we're here to learn today. Today we're going to be shooting with a single flash. Everything we do today will be using one single, little speed light. And I'll be showing a variety of ways to make that one speed light work. I'll be talking about how to use the Nikons or the Canon speed lights and some other third party, third brand speed lights. But, the cool thing about this class is that you don't have to have a lot of gear to pull this off well. You don't have to have a lot of equipment to do really fantastic imagery. Today we'll be photographing a single kid. We'll be photographing a couple of kids together. We'll be photographing some action, some kids jumping up and down. And then we'll be photographing some family. And then later on in the day, one of the neat things is I'm going to show you how to do some black and white photography. And talk about being timeless, black and white really helps us create this timeless look. So that's the overall scope for the day. Just a little bit about me, I've been photographing, like Drew said, for a long time. I've been actually shooting pictures since I was very young. I think I was probably when I got my first little Argus film camera. It was an Argus C3. Some of you watching today will know what that is. And I had a little light meter and I'd go around and I'd meter the scene and I'd set it all up. But ever since that day, I was enamored with photography. And I've never let it go. Even my previous career was engineering, but I've always had this nagging thing back in my head, I've got to be a photographer and so I've been a pro photographer for now about 20 years and I love teaching, I love playing with big gear. So today is a lot about gear, it just has to be. But then I love creating art, and that's for me personally, that's the challenging part, creating the art side. So I hope you enjoy the ride today. Real quick, I'm just going to go through and give you an overview of what we're going to cover. Well, there's a fun photo, I just have to show that. Her tooth was falling out and as a photographer you never know what you're going to get when your clients come and sometimes it's a little bit of a struggle when photographing kids. How do we get these kids involved in the photographic process, the creative process? So here, I just asked her, hey what's going on? She's like, I've got a tooth that's about to come out, and so I said, would you point to it? Great little moment. One of my favorite shots from that session. Another young girl, I think she's about three-ish and we just photographed her in a variety of scenarios, with a white background, with a black background. Again, one flash to create these images, a single flash. This young lady was very responsive to anything I asked her to do. So, I asked her, would you wrap the hair around your finger? Would you give me a serious look, great. Would you pose this way? Some kids are great that way and other kids aren't. Her sister was there and I won't be showing any photos of her sister today, because her sister, as soon as she saw me, ran away in terror. Like literally, Aaaaaah! Tears rolling down her face, running down the hallway and it didn't work out so well. Sometimes kid photos can be a little bit of a struggle. Here's the plan, this morning, Segment One, we're going to be talking about gear and a little bit of techy stuff. So, I'm going to show you how to use a light meter. I'm going to show you how to white balance using a custom white balance tool. And then we're going to talk about settings on the cameras, and settings on the flashes. The next segment, we'll be going to lighting styles. So I'll be talking about, what you need to think about when you're photographing a single child versus two children together versus an entire family. When you get a lot of people into the scene, lighting can get very complicated very quickly. And you add to that posing, and you add to that a one year old kid and a ten year old kid and a grandparent and all of this stuff and it can get pretty chaotic. So, I hope you have patience with me today as we have patience with the process. Then the third segment, we'll be doing a lot of shooting with the families, so a big family, I think I have a family of six coming in today for the afternoon. And then the next part of this post-processing. When you're using one flash, you have to put a little bit of extra effort into your photos after the fact, because you can't really sculpt the light as much, or as well as you could with multiple flashes. So I'm going to give you some tips in Lightroom for how to post-process your images. Our final segment of the day is all about black and white. So, I'll be shooting some traditional black and white portraiture and then the final element is what I'm calling an heirloom portrait, a portrait that stands the test of time. Something a little more dignified with the child. Something that will look the same 50 years from now, 100 years from now, five years from now. So, we'll create that heirloom portrait.

Class Materials

Bonus Materials with Purchase

Children & Family Images Lighting Diagrams
Gear List for $100 Budget
Gear List for $250 Budget
Gear List for $1000 Budget

Ratings and Reviews


Great course really love the way Mike teaches so informative with very useful tips and tricks to use in photography

Dortohy Lyner

Loved this class. Great basic essential information. Mike filled in many gaps concerning my knowledge of studio photography.

Jayne Fletcher

Amazing class! Lots of information

Student Work