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Adding to Existing Light - Part I

Lesson 28 from: Lighting 201

SLR Lounge, Pye Jirsa

Adding to Existing Light - Part I

Lesson 28 from: Lighting 201

SLR Lounge, Pye Jirsa

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Lesson Info

28. Adding to Existing Light - Part I


Class Trailer

Chapter 1 Introduction


Welcome to Lighting 201!


OCF = Anytime/Anyplace


Chapter 2 Introduction


Wired, Infrared or Radio?


“Pocket, Medium, Full Strobe?”


Our 3 Favorite Flashes “Pocket Strobes”


4 More Flashes “Pocket Strobes” Worth Looking At


Our 2 Favorite Medium Strobes


Understanding Radios Part I: Channels & Groups


Our 2 Favorite Radio Triggers


5 Simple Steps to Trouble Shooting Radios/OCFs


Fantastic ND Filters at Any Price Range


Our Favorite “Sticks”


Our Favorite Ultra-Portable OCF Light Modifiers


12 Mounting and Must-Have Lighting Accessories


Gear Setup - Setting Up a Light Stand or “Stick”


Gear Setup - Setting Up a Monopod Light or “Boom Stick”


Gear Setup - Setting Up a “Medium Boom Stick”


Gear Setup - Setting Up a Manual Flash “Big Boom Stick”


Gear Setup - Setting Up a Full Feature Flash “Big Boom Stick”


Chapter 3 Introduction


8 Steps to Perfecting Each Scene & Image When Using OCF


Over Powering the Sun - Part I


Over Powering the Sun - Part II


Slow Down! Watch the Details


More Power Without The Power


Adding to Existing Light - Part I


Bare Bulbing with Large Groups


Back Lighting to Create Interest


Getting Crazy with the “Whip Pan”


Chapter 4 Introduction


The Flash Modifier You Already Own


The Oh-So Powerful Umbrella


Large Group Shots with an Umbrella


Exposure Balancing via Lightroom


Portable Softboxes - Westcott Apollo


More Light Control, Just Grid It!


Dusk + Modified Pocket Strobes


More Power? Medium Strobes FTW!


Perfect It In-Camera. Then Photoshop


Adding to Existing Light - Part II


Adding or Enhancing Light Direction


Our Ideal Group Lighting Technique


Incorporating Flares with Flash


Cutting Light, Grids and GOBOs


Chapter 5 Introduction


Fog + Flash + Grid = Dramatic Change


BYOL! The 3-Light Setup That Only Requires One Light!


What About the Fill Light?


Backlight + GOBO + Fog = Magic


Drawing Attention via Light Shaping


Visualizing Lights & Color Shifts


Mixing Ambient + Gobo w/ Flash


Better Light Can Change Everything!


Chapter 6 Introduction


Subtle Refinement = Massive Difference


Great Light Changes Everything! Part II


Manually Triggered RCS + Shutter Drag


The Right Power for Each Scene


Dodging and Burning via Light In-Camera


Subtle Light for Natural Portraits


Light Modification & Simple Compositing


Expanding Your Photographic Vision


Lesson Info

Adding to Existing Light - Part I

Adding two existing light part one part to this is going to come later in this course. Now, what are we trying to say when it comes to adding to existing like this is actually one of my favorite lighting techniques, and we did it a bit in lighting one on one, but really lighting to one and beyond is where we have a lot more control of this. And what we're essentially saying is that when we want to add to existing light were basically saying that the scene is perfect, the natural lightness scene is absolutely beautiful. The light that's falling on your subject is great. All we need is just a little bit more of it. Why? Because what we're trying to do is just boost the existing light on our subject a little bit so that way they stand out from the background. The easiest way to tell if a scene is perfectly set up for just adding to existing light is just to look at the scene as a whole and just say, do I like the light on my couple? And do I like the overall scene lighting and do I like e...

verything about it? But is my couple getting a little bit lost in the background? It's exactly what we have over here in this image now over here name it's the left what we do is what we look at is I love the light in the couple I love the shadows I love it everything that's existing that scene I'd like quite a bit I like the background light I like everything about it it's just that the couple is a little bit lost in the background currently like the brightness of the ways and the brightness of everything else is just a little bit over where they're at so what do I do? We'll have a couple different options I can actually add existing light with this exact exposure and just at a smidgen of life which would look really nice and very, very natural or I can add light to the existing scene and also pulled down the exposure of the background a little bit to kind of give it a little more drama there's really no right or wrong and in looking at this image you know, I think if it weren't for the sake of this editorial I probably would expose it just a little bit mawr in between so this is probably around two stops darker than this one as faras the ambient background we can actually see so this is one two thousandth of a second this is one eight thousand of a second so yeah two stops darker I think I would have went one stop darker and then add a little light on to them. But for the signatory wanted to make it a little more dramatic and just show you howto add to existing light using this technique. So what are we trying to do in this scene? Well, for the scene, we're shooting at the tide pools in laguna beach. I'm actually on a staircase right now, shooting down on the couple. I'm on my signal. Thirty five millimeter art. Fantastic. Linz, I love the entire signal. Our siri's absolutely amazing. We are shooting this at one point for and let's see, I saw one hundred five point four case let's walk through kind of that composition and kind of the overall process and tips. So as faras composition and afterwards go, I thought would be really cool to be shooting top down the scene and the shooting at a very shallow depth of field at one point four to kind of have this top down look where my couple almost look like. I don't know the scene just looks almost miniature due to that top down look and everything else in the background falling into ok, ok, so I thought that might be a cool effect, a half kind of that blur in the background, having everything be tack sharp so at one point four with my first thought, I wanted that and also one of the natural been yet ing that occurs when you're shooting wide open on the lens. It looks beautiful around the edges and it has this natural darkening which pulls things into the center and bring the tension of the subject. Okay, so we're shooting with a relatively fast shutter speed and the whole purpose behind that was that I wanted to freeze one of the crashing waves. Okay, so I wanted to be around one one thousand one two thousand in a second. But, you know, at one point four and s a one hundred to get the background darkened down a little bit. So going a step further, I wanted to get a darker anya nexpo jher, so I wanted to go around one eight thousand of second. Now, what about sync now what we just said was that basically wanted to freeze the waves, right? So we need to be at a shutter speed of around thousands of a second to get completely frozen waves in the first place. Now, would it make a huge difference with the ways being out of focus in the background? Not a huge difference if we were at one, two hundred verses one, one thousand but still that's, not the point. The point is that if we put in any field trying to bring the sink speed down we're no longer able to freeze the background the way that we want to or the way that we envision so what do we do? Well we're using the photos metros and so this is the time where with the odin on my camera and I had three meters is mounted to the cheetah bracket you can again cheater brackets overkill for these guys I just have it because I often use manual strobes to I just put these on the cheater brackets I have three of them and I use high speed sync with my foe tex odin on the camera that allows me to fire at above one, two hundred second for the sinks be now keep in mind that when whatever we do that our light output the light output of these guys drops tremendously we're losing anywhere between five plus stops of light by going up to one a thousandth of a second but I have three of them stacked together so that's not a huge deal and also I just want to add to existing light I'm not trying to overpower existing light if I was that would be a problem but since I'm not it's okay, so we achieve sync by going into high speed sync and going toe one eight thousand of second and is a one hundred for that slightly darker, more dramatic exposure light direction, quality now here is one thing if I could go back to the scene and if I had, you know, twenty twenty hindsight if I were to go back and redo this I would make one modification to this. Well, maybe two modifications one I would shoot it in between these two exposure. So it's, just a little bit less dramatic to the light position right now is placed on the ground and to the left of the subject. Okay, so as far as the light direction quality, we have three bear brel strobes over to the left of the camera and again, we're shooting top down. So the couples on the ground, the strobes over here just on the left side I want I wish the light position would have been a little different if it were possible to boom the lights up toe almost like the same position, the same height that I'm at, like ten to fifteen feet and then just walk it out a little bit further in the sea. Now it might have been a shot where we'd have to set up a tripod and do that simple composite because it would have most likely been in the frame if it were up that high and if it were shooting down but what I would essentially want to do if it was possible if I had the time is toe light from the exact angle of where the sun's coming down from here and that would be top down from about fifteen to twenty feet up in the air going right on the subject so that way we matched the ambient light just a little bit better, but we didn't have that choice, you know, the way that we were shooting it was this was kind of just in the moment and we wanted to get the light aziz good as possible, so I'm shooting from the left side, which we are matching the direction as faras like where the light's coming from, but we're not matching the angle going top down, and so it ends up filling a little bit more shadow than I would want it too. The problem with not matching ambient light direction is that you end up filling shadow and them or than you, phil shadow in a scene like this, the more flat the subjects look why? Because well, let's say lights coming from one side and we add that light so let's say our natural it's going from this side and we add light from this side by doing that, we've essentially cross let the subject and what you end up getting is just a flat light because you live from this ideal it from this side it's equivalent to if you just shot a flash and flat let them directly so what we want to do is match the ambient light and while we've matched it from the direction kind of where it's coming from, we didn't match in terms of height, so we end up filling a little bit more shadow than I would have liked, but it still is a nice example of basically amplification of that existing light let me push this out just a little bit she is going to see this so for our final shot we ended up posing we basically have for the pot's he's kind of dipping your back is a tiny bit they're going for a kiss, she has a hand up on a chest and then we fire with three photonics meters plus is on the cheetah bracket were at anywhere between, you know again, depending on how many flashes you have set up and depending on whether using high speed seeing person andy, you could be anywhere between one over one to one quarter power. We're shooting around one half power on this because we're losing so much light being in high speed sync were we not in high speed think there'll be no need to shoot with that much power, okay, but we're losing a ton of light at one thousandth of a second with that high speed sync again if you guys want to see what high speed thing does and nd filters versus high seas high speeds thinking all that stuff go backto lighting one one we did full demonstrations on that. You can see precisely what it does. All right, so, like color actually like the natural look, that kind of cooler tone it was overcast day, so we have this kind of cooler tone to it at fifty, fifty four hundred degrees kelvin which look nice. I thought it looked great as the waves crashed, we shot the image and I dig the overall look to the image you can see that basically had we shot the image without any added light, this would have been the explosion. The couples who basically pulled down the exploded by two stops, they drop into the shadow again. I think an ideal balance between these two would have been one stop between these. So, like, one for thousands of a second and maybe one stop less light power and coming from that height a low point using a tripod again and try pot would have been it would have taken, like fifteen to twenty years to get that shot because we would have had to set up a tripod on the stairs and I would've been cumbersome and so forth, but I think if you have the chance, that would be amazing, okay, just remember one last tip I had here was that anywhere between one, two thousand and one a thousand of second, between this range, even going brighter, going dark, or whatever you want to do is completely subjective and up to your discretion. Okay, just adjust the flash power accordingly. But itjust is gonna depend on whether you want that more natural versus the more dramatic look here we went with the more dramatic look, I still think it looks really cool is a shot of the client's absolute doug, but that just gives you an idea of what to go for, so that is adding to existing light. And what you can see in that final image is that with the existing light added, we can pull down the background and just a little bit, and it just makes the subject pop a little bit more. It makes them jump off the page more. And I'm really excited to show you this later on, because we have another technique for show you in the desert. We have another image. We're gonna show you the same technique on what we do flash modification, and it looks absolutely brilliant because it just draws attention right in this subject, while still preserving the look of that kind of the look in direction of the natural light, that's it for this tutorial, its head on the next video now

Class Materials

Bonus Materials with Purchase

Lighting 201 Slides

Ratings and Reviews


Pye is a god. His teaching style is really engaging, breaking down everything you could want to know about each example in a fun yet detailed manner. The course is absolutely jam-packed full of great information and fantastic inspiration. This course, as well as Lighting 101, give not only a perfect foundation for anybody learning about flash from scratch, but also have more than enough tips and advanced techniques in them to help experienced flash users seriously up their game. Cannot recommend it enough.

Lê Tiến Đạt

I'd like to say thank you to SLR Lougne, Creativelive and especially Pye for creating this wonderful Lighting series. Pye has a great sense of humor and he is also a great teacher. He expains everything in tiny details. I love his creativity, all the tips and dedication. Recommended!

Karen Ruet

I'm watching this live and am seriously considering buying this course. I really like the examples and all the information. Pye is super generous and easy to listen to. I also appreciate the talk about gear and am happy that Pye is giving us options for different price ranges. Thank you, Creative Live.

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