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Lighting 201

Lesson 61 of 64

Dodging and Burning via Light In-Camera


Lighting 201

Lesson 61 of 64

Dodging and Burning via Light In-Camera


Lesson Info

Dodging and Burning via Light In-Camera

Dodging and burning via light in camera look, I love photo shop, I love dodging and burning in light room in photo shopped everywhere, but if I could do it in camera, I'm gonna get better results and quicker results when I get into post production. So here I have a little refinement example of essentially doing something that we have done before it's, a similar technique, it's, the same technique of adding to existing light. Basically, we're adding to the existing light direction, but this time we're doing it with hard midday sun. We have event out in the desert again, and we're shooting this shot with her in her red dress, that's, beautiful gold jewelry, and I have our standing here on this doom and the whole composition, the whole thing that I'm thinking about it, I have my sigma one twenty to three hundred on loan, that gigantic mother of linz that shoots at two, eight, and if you don't have that, use a seventy, two hundred, you get a very similar result, but what I wanted was to zo...

om in from another dune to zoom in on two event at three hundred millimeters and fill the background with the waves of these dunes. Now to do this well, I wanted to make sure that I could actually see the waves of the dunes in the background so I wanted to shoot at around a high aperture anywhere between eight tow eleven what I found was that I needed to be at around eleven. Why? Because it was so bright out that to get to one, two hundred a second for my sink speed I had to be an eleven and even then I still needed to be at s o fifty to get to the right exposure so I could have gone to f fourteen. But I thought maybe I'll stick with the nicer sharpness and stuff at eleven because that's around where the optimal sharpness on that lens wass and I'll go down to the esso fifty ok, so we take this shot and we get this beautiful shot I have her in this pose where basically she's holding her body across that generally I try and avoid right angles on the arms, but the thing was actually wanted to use in this case to frame her torso and the detail on the dress. So we have this little triangle piece right above that we have the necklace and I thought it did a really good job of that and then kind of brought attention to her jewellery as well. I also had her kicked the hip and swing the leg over so that we get this beautiful kind of our king leg that trims down look how it trims down at the knees which lets the hips open up and then we kind of allowed the body where we have kind of the skin on each side and we can see her form is opening up a little bit on the top okay and then we let the train of a dress just kind of catch the wind we have this nice pole going on I have a look down because again this isn't for me this shot's not about her and her expression that shot is about the fashion of the shot is about the scene it's about the jewelry it's about everything else and so I'm not distracting the viewers by having her look into the camera so when I get this test shot I like my exposure I like everything about it but once again she falls into the background in terms of brightness she doesn't stand out at all also I have very harsh shadow transition because we're shooting with direct sunlight I love direct sunlight we've placed her in a way where that direct sunlight is coming basically from the front and side and so is lighting down on her so we get a really nice direction of light to her face and everything and with the hard light that's fine that's great as long as we place them in the right position hard light is absolutely fantastic it's a light that's used for fashion a ton okay, but what I want to do is open it up just a little bit I want to brighten her up I want to open up the shadows just a tiny bit and so essentially what I'm trying to do is dodging burn in camera and the way that I get there is I have my bolt maybe twenty two we still have it on the sm devi speed box sixty it's again another rapid box equivalent that can hold this flash a little bit better without letting the light spill out I have trevor he's holding off to the side and basically we're lighting with the light direction in this second shot okay, we're at around one half toe one over one power based on the distance to the subject, so we're putting down quite a bit of light on her this was probably about a half power, but we had bring him closer to the model, so we're putting down roughly, you know, a good one hundred fifty watt seconds hundred twenty five hundred watt seconds of light on tour that's about equivalent to two to three pocket strobes if you're running it through a modifier so that's a good amount of light in a way you can see is that immediately it brightens her up it lifts her off the background it creates beautiful highlights along the right side of her of her body and face it opens up the shadows and even allows this shadow transition where you see this cheek right here, it allows there to be a more soft shadow transition between the highlight areas vs the shadow areas. So it looks amazing, and I love the way this looks in comparison just to that standard shot and makes her just pop off the off the image. And I would have done the exact same thing in photo shop. But for me to do this in photo shop to get from here to here, that would have taken probably like a half hour to an hour to do inside a photo shop. But to get from this to this that's like fifteen, twenty minutes all had to do now is just clean up the background. I burned the shadows down just a little bit. I popped a little with contrast and just dodge and burn a little bit over a skin to kind of amplify existing areas and kind of pull away from other areas and so forth, and we got to the final image within just a few minutes. Why? Because we started the process in camera, so if you could start the process in camera it's going to be that much easier in that much better in the final result after the fact. Okay, so like color by the way, I left this at four thousand degrees kelvin and this was an artistic choice because I wanted this super white neutral look to not only the sand but also her skin tones so once again her red dress just pops right out the background we already talked about the pose we're framing her dead center in the middle of the shot because again I want her to command the president of the scene I want us to really focus on the dress and the shape of the dress is taking with this hobo shot our main thing here is to zoom in and analyse we're using hard light so we know look closely at the shadows to make sure they're falling in the right places look closely at the body position the fur dreaming look at the poll in the dress it's a very complex shot we want to make sure that everything looks fantastic and what you could do on this final shot also is I kind of like the pull on this one a little bit more than this one so you actually take the bottom part of this image and just swap it out on the right side too so we could do a little more photo shop and manipulation to maybe swap out the dress and maybe even the hair as well so we don't have as many flyways on this one so we could do a lot of work there to kind of just tweak inside a photo shop. But the whole point is, get as far as we can inside of the camera and then use photo shop. Is that tool to finish up afterwards? So hopefully this has been kind of interesting to you because we've seen now how adding toe light before we've been adding to, you know, softer, light source. We've been adding to that soft existing phil. We've been adding to you no other direction, like we had one example before what we did have a fashion shot worry that was looking into kind of sunset light. But this is an example of just that hard, almost kind of mid data, mid afternoon light coming down a slightly directional but it's still very hard and we're just amplifying and we're pumping up, and you can see what kind of effect that has over the background and how it makes the subject really just popped. Hopefully enjoy this tutorial, let's, head on now to the next video.

Class Description

Lighting 201 builds on 101’s foundational tips on simple, effective exposure techniques. Lighting 201 comprises 10 hours of education on advanced, off-camera flash lighting over nearly 20 different shoots. You will learn just how much can be achieved with just one inexpensive off-camera light source.

In this course, Pye Jirsa of SLR Lounge give you tips on how to:

  • Use light manipulation to turn extreme lighting situations like midday sun or the night sky into stunning background imagery for portraiture.
  • Develop a sense of placement strategy in shoots with complex lighting and limited, portable gear
  • Composite images in post-production to achieve the best possible light
Lighting 201 will also help you develop fluency in using the right light modifiers for the job, whether they be speed-lights, strobes or main-lights. 201 also features an in-depth exploration of the mechanics of professional lighting gear and step-by-step walkthroughs of the gear setup for each shoot. Graduate to the next level of exposure mastery with Lighting 201 with Pye Jirsa.


  1. Chapter 1 Introduction
  2. Welcome to Lighting 201!
  3. OCF = Anytime/Anyplace
  4. Chapter 2 Introduction
  5. Wired, Infrared or Radio?
  6. “Pocket, Medium, Full Strobe?”
  7. Our 3 Favorite Flashes “Pocket Strobes”
  8. 4 More Flashes “Pocket Strobes” Worth Looking At
  9. Our 2 Favorite Medium Strobes
  10. Understanding Radios Part I: Channels & Groups
  11. Our 2 Favorite Radio Triggers
  12. 5 Simple Steps to Trouble Shooting Radios/OCFs
  13. Fantastic ND Filters at Any Price Range
  14. Our Favorite “Sticks”
  15. Our Favorite Ultra-Portable OCF Light Modifiers
  16. 12 Mounting and Must-Have Lighting Accessories
  17. Gear Setup - Setting Up a Light Stand or “Stick”
  18. Gear Setup - Setting Up a Monopod Light or “Boom Stick”
  19. Gear Setup - Setting Up a “Medium Boom Stick”
  20. Gear Setup - Setting Up a Manual Flash “Big Boom Stick”
  21. Gear Setup - Setting Up a Full Feature Flash “Big Boom Stick”
  22. Chapter 3 Introduction
  23. 8 Steps to Perfecting Each Scene & Image When Using OCF
  24. Over Powering the Sun - Part I
  25. Over Powering the Sun - Part II
  26. Slow Down! Watch the Details
  27. More Power Without The Power
  28. Adding to Existing Light - Part I
  29. Bare Bulbing with Large Groups
  30. Back Lighting to Create Interest
  31. Getting Crazy with the “Whip Pan”
  32. Chapter 4 Introduction
  33. The Flash Modifier You Already Own
  34. The Oh-So Powerful Umbrella
  35. Large Group Shots with an Umbrella
  36. Exposure Balancing via Lightroom
  37. Portable Softboxes - Westcott Apollo
  38. More Light Control, Just Grid It!
  39. Dusk + Modified Pocket Strobes
  40. More Power? Medium Strobes FTW!
  41. Perfect It In-Camera. Then Photoshop
  42. Adding to Existing Light - Part II
  43. Adding or Enhancing Light Direction
  44. Our Ideal Group Lighting Technique
  45. Incorporating Flares with Flash
  46. Cutting Light, Grids and GOBOs
  47. Chapter 5 Introduction
  48. Fog + Flash + Grid = Dramatic Change
  49. BYOL! The 3-Light Setup That Only Requires One Light!
  50. What About the Fill Light?
  51. Backlight + GOBO + Fog = Magic
  52. Drawing Attention via Light Shaping
  53. Visualizing Lights & Color Shifts
  54. Mixing Ambient + Gobo w/ Flash
  55. Better Light Can Change Everything!
  56. Chapter 6 Introduction
  57. Subtle Refinement = Massive Difference
  58. Great Light Changes Everything! Part II
  59. Manually Triggered RCS + Shutter Drag
  60. The Right Power for Each Scene
  61. Dodging and Burning via Light In-Camera
  62. Subtle Light for Natural Portraits
  63. Light Modification & Simple Compositing
  64. Expanding Your Photographic Vision



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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