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Glamour Photos by the Pool

Lesson 9 from: On-Location Light and Lighting

Mark Wallace

Glamour Photos by the Pool

Lesson 9 from: On-Location Light and Lighting

Mark Wallace

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Lesson Info

9. Glamour Photos by the Pool

We explore the ways composition and depth of field have an impact on our location photos. Mark photographs our model next to a beautiful pool for the glamour lighting session.
Next Lesson: Closing

Lesson Info

Glamour Photos by the Pool

Now for our last shot of the day, we're gonna explore how depth of field and composition can change your environmental portraits. In fact, this is a glimmer portrait. We have Sidney in her bikini and we are going to well, do what we've been doing. We're going to control the ambient light. We're gonna add some flash and then we're gonna make some beautiful portraits. So to start with, let's just see what we're working with. I have my camera in manual mode. I'm gonna close my aperture down to F 10, and then I'm gonna dial in my shutter speeds so that we have an appropriate or an accurate exposure. So right now, if I'm looking, I can see that I need to be at about, one 60th of a second. In fact, I'm gonna get a little bit closer to Sydney just to make sure that's right. So about 200th of a second is where we are. So if I take this shot at F 10 and I shoot that, it's so bright out here, I can't see my computer. So I'm not even gonna try. I'm gonna look inside my camera. And that is horribl...

e. Sorry. I have done a dis-justice. So injustice, dis-justice in whatever whatever word is, I've done it. And so you can see that everything's in focus, the background's in focus. We can see that we have, oh, this hot tub back there. The tree is growing out of Sydney's head. It's just all kinds of wrong. Not, not only that, but we have a really, really nasty light. All the lights just nasty on Sydney. So let's start fixing some of these things. So step one, always let's control this really harsh light. Let's get a sun swatter expert. And so Chris is gonna come out. Chris let's use the sun swatter to go, let's go thigh up. So we're not gonna do head to toe, right? Yeah. About like that. Now we're letting Sydney keep her glasses on until we dial this in. 'cause it is really, really bright and I don't want her to be crying. And so that's why she's wearing sunglasses right now. And then I'm gonna take a shot. And then when we, you look at that shot again I have to sort of stare into the camera to see this. We can see that Sydney is now under exposed because I didn't make changes. So I need to go in here and I will slow my shutter down to about a 60th of a second F 10. That's crazy. And then let's shoot that. You can hear that slow shutter speed. And now the light on Sydney looks fantastic. I mean, look at that. We have just really nice soft light. Once she gets her sunglasses off, you can see that her eyes are gonna look really wonderful. We're almost there. So let me just grab your sunglasses just for a second. Close your eyes. And then, and what we'll do is we'll do the 1, 2, 3 trick. And so your eyes are closed. I like ..do that again with your.. Just like that. Excellent. Bam. Okay. I didn't even have to count. She was ready to go. Let me give you this back so you can protect your eyes. I can't stress how bright it is out here right now. When I look at that, that looks great. Sydney looks a little like she's gonna kill me. Cause her eyes are too wide open but I like where we're going with that. The problem with that, is we still have a tree growing out of Sydney's head. I need to change my composition a little bit so that I can fix the problems here with the background. So what I'm gonna do here is I'm gonna be a lot more deliberate about where I stand and I'm gonna try to center her on the tree itself. (camera shutters) Perfect. Okay. So now I've actually paid attention to what I'm doing. And even though the tree is behind her it looks like it's growing out from her head. At least it's centered. We can do some things to fix that background and that is change the depth of field. And so how your arms, Chris? You still good? Great. All right. Chris is a beefy guy so he can handle it. So what I'm gonna do here is I'm gonna take my aperture down to F four. So I'm opening up that aperture and that's gonna give me more shallow depth of field. I'm gonna zoom in I'm at 105 millimeters. And now what I need to do is speed up my shutter speed. So I'm gonna make sure the exposure is set for Sydney. So I'm gonna get really close and I'm just gonna take a shot so you can see what I'm seeing when I meet her. So I'm metering about that close. So you can see here that we are just on Sydney's face. I wanna make sure that is correct. Once I have that set, I can back up a little bit and I can take the next shot. (Camera shutters) And so we've got that. The nice thing about this is now that tree back there. If I look through here, it's out of focus is looking better but the background is overexposed and I still don't like how the background is looking. So what we're gonna do is we're gonna sort of fix our exposure issues because we've controlled the light with our sun swatter that looks good. Sydney's looking good. The background is just too bright. And so we, that dynamic range issue. So let's add a flash. I'm gonna use this big beefy 500 watt second flash. We need a lot of light. Wow, that's hot. And so what we're going to do, I think I burned my hand. So we're gonna use this. This is a really powerful parabolic reflector. It's silver. So what it's going to do is it's gonna scoop up all the light and it's gonna give us the maximum punch. And because this is a glamor shot. If we have the light, as on axis as possible this is gonna look sort of like a ring flash where it's gonna outline Sydney's body. It's gonna look sports illustrated kind of wonderful shot. So what I'll do here is I want to put this back on my light, get that set. I want this light to be as on axis as possible to my camera so that we don't really notice that there's this flash coming from the side. So I'm gonna turn this on. I'm pointing it straight at Sydney and I'm gonna have my camera sort of just right to the side of this. So we're gonna try to keep things on axis. The other thing I need is my transmitter which is on this little table that you cannot see. So I will turn on my transmitter and now we're doing the same thing that we've done before we are going to go through our list. The first thing we're do is set our ISO. The second thing we're going to do is set our aperture value F four. The third thing we're going to do is we're gonna go look and see what the correct shutter speed is for our ambient light. And then we're going, let the camera and the flash figure out the proper flash exposure will adjust it up or down if needed using flash exposure compensation. So here we go. I'm gonna take my camera here. And I'm gonna first meter on the background and at F four I need to be at 1600th of a second. That's what I need to be at. In fact, I'm gonna take a picture of the background just so you can all see this. So this is the background you can see that is exposed correctly. It's just our plants and stuff (plane engine revving) and our friendly neighborhood plane flying over. And so we are on location. Hello plane. All right. So now I am turning on my flash to that fire. Yes, it did. This really packs a punch. And so I'm gonna make sure that my flash is as close to my camera as I can get. And then yes, that is what I want right there, Sydney. Beautiful. I'll take a picture and let me look in my camera. Oh way over exposed way over exposed. And so let me do that one more time because sometimes what happens... Yeah. Sometimes what happens is that first metering can be off because of the flash and the camera getting all synced. So this is way, way, way, way too bright. So what I'm going to do here is I'm gonna take my flash exposure compensation and I'm gonna take it down by two stops and let's see if we can get that to start behaving and it's not, and why it's not behaving. I don't know. Let's see. Oh, ha. I know why it's not behaving. I didn't have it in TTL mode. I had it in manual mode. So now that I've put it in TTL mode I need to set my flash exposure compensation back to zero. These are the things that happen when you're shooting on location. So I didn't have the set to TTL. So there was no communication between the flash and my camera. And so it was just blasting full speed. All right. Now let's try it again. This time with everything set. What I think is correct. Let's see if I can get it right. (Camera shutters and beeps) Okay. And I can hear, I can just hear that flash. Wow. Look at this. Now that light is beautiful. This is gorgeous, gorgeous light. So look at this. So Sierra, leave that up a little bit. You can see that the speculator highlights on Sydney look wonderful. This light modifier is doing exactly what it was designed to do. It makes us look really, really wonderful. It's really speculative. And I like it. So I it's just not as good as I think it could be. There are a couple of things that are happening here that I don't like. If you'll notice the hose behind Sydney has snuck out into the pool. So if I look at this, I can see, ah, we've got that. We have this really strong horizontal line behind Sydney's shoulders. I don't like that. You can still sort of see the hot tub. There's too much in the background. And I don't like it. So what I'm going to do is I'm gonna change lenses first off. So I'm gonna come over here. There's a table here that you cannot see, but I can. And what I'm going to do is I'm gonna change from my 24 to 1 0 5 to an 85, 1.2. We are not gonna shoot at 1.2. I think that would be crazy to try that right off the bat. So what we're gonna do is I'm gonna dial this into about F two eight and now let me see what my background needs to be. So ISO we've set. We set the aperture value. Now we have to set the shutter speed accordingly. So the shutter speed goes up to two and a half thousandth of a second. Yep. And now I need to move closer 'cause this is an 85 instead of a 1 0 5. The light's gonna come with me. I want it to be on axis. Chris is still staying in there. Sydney, how you doing? Good. (camera shutters) Bam. There's 2.8. That's better. I need to move my position because we have a hot tub. We have this square thing going on. I don't like that. So I'm gonna try to get more of the background foillage. (camera shutters) Bam Oh. Let's take a look at that. Oh, that's getting better. We still have that strong, horizontal line behind Sydney. I don't like that. Let's just see what we can do at 1.2. Can we do it? Let me see what my Shutter speed has to be. We can't get there. So we'll shoot at.. we can shoot at two at 8000th of a second. We'll try that. Beautiful.(camera shutters) Okay, so now yes. Now this is getting better. This is getting better. Okay. Turn your shoulders a little bit more toward me. There you go. Yes. Beautiful. I'll take that shot again. I'm looking through my view finder because I can't see my computer. It's too bright out here. So I'm looking through here to see what we're getting. That looks wonderful. Sydney. it looks like you're about to cry. So we're gonna do the 1, 2, 3 thing chin down a little bit. And then on the count of three, I want you to look at me. 1, 2, 3. (camera shutters) There you go. Okay. That is wow. That is looking fantastic. In this scenario, we're gonna just leave this picture up for a second so we can just sort of go through it. You can see that we've eliminated a lot of stuff but we still have a horizontal line there that I don't like. And so we're gonna change something. And so I'm gonna put this camera on my tripod and what we're gonna do is now we're gonna change what we're looking at. As far as our background I don't like the background that we're seeing. We have that fence there that gives us a horizontal line but I love the color that we're getting out of the pool so I can change where I'm standing and that's gonna change the composition. And then we can change our lights accordingly. So Chris, give your arms a break. And then what I'm gonna do is I have this one of the best photo tools ever invented. It's a step stool. That's gonna allow me to elevate my angle of view. And then we're gonna have you lower your angle of view. So can you just step off there's a little ledge in the pool. And so that looks great. I think that's gonna work perfectly. And then let me see if I can get the composition that I want and then we'll adjust the flash. So I'm just gonna turn the flash off for right now. So that is off and now I'm gonna elevate and I'm gonna go back to 2.8. 'cause we are just super bright here and now we're at 2000th of a second and I like that. I gotta get a little bit closer. I forgot I had no zoom lens I don't even know if I need to have myself elevated. So Chris, let me just give you this for a second. Give you that and then turn toward me Sydney. There we go. Just like that. Good. Good. Good. All right. So let me just take the shot and let me look and see what we have. Okay. We have a cool background. Let me see if I can even go wider. So 1.2 gets us at, we can't get to 1.2, 1.6. We can get to, there we go. Perfect. Make your head a little bit toward me. Yeah. Turn your head. I guess that's what you're that's the word? Chin down a little bit. There you go. And then let me take a peek at this. So we have the composition I want but we don't have the lighting I want that's okay. Because once we have our composition we can do what we did before. And so what I'll do is I'm gonna add a flash and a Chris and we're gonna get this all set. So I'm gonna turn on my flash. I wanna make sure it's down. I'll make sure that it's on access as much as possible. So Chris, I want you to get that extended. So she's in shade as much as possible. And then now there you go. Beautiful. We're still at, at 8000th of a second and wow. Let's get your sunglasses all the way off. So let me see if I can get them from you because we are getting a photo here. That is totally opposite of what we started with chin down. Yeah, we don't... Yeah, there you go. Perfect.(camera beeps and shutters) And then can you... Perfect. Can you play with your hair just a little bit? There you go. That's what I want right there. Excellent. Hold that.(camera shutters) And then if you can, can you scooch down just a little bit? Yeah, not that much. Just yep. And there we go. Yeah. So actually that doesn't work. So just stand normal. There you go. Perfect. Perfect. Perfect. And exactly. (camera shutters) I'm trying to get the top end of this to cut off the edge of the pool. There we go. Yeah. Do that one more time and now look up at me. There you go.(camera shutters) Perfect. All right. Let me just look at this last shot. That is gorgeous. I like that. Yeah. So I'm gonna go over the computer and see if I can show you these last two shots. Chris, you can relax just a little bit. And so I'm gonna bring the computer out into the screen. Whoop. Sorry. I just messed that up. Okay. So here is the last shot Sierra, if you can bring this up and then we'll just sort of go through this series of shots here where I love those, those look great. So we're just sort of seeing what's happening. If we look at this from beginning to end I will try my best to see what the computer screen is showing me because it is almost impossible to see. So if we look at the beginning, the first and the last look at the difference between these two photos, I mean it is a massive difference between the left photo nasty light to the right photo where we have something that looks really, really nice. I would have to go in here and check exposure and do some things in post production. Cause right now I cannot see I need a hood over my computer. I absolutely can't see it. But I think the point is made. What we did is we not only went in and controlled our ambient light and then changed the dynamic range by adding a flash solving that issue. But we used our shallow depth of field to get rid of the distractions of the background. And then we changed our point of view to change the background completely. And we got a much, much better shot.

Class Materials

Bonus Materials with Purchase

Flash Exposure Worksheet
Frio Grasp Mini Discount
Tether Tools Pro Kit Discount
Tether Tools Starter Kit Discount
NanLite_WALLACE5.pdf

Ratings and Reviews

user-def74a
 

An excellent real-life exploration of basic lighting techniques that can really make a difference. I especially appreciated the explanation of high-speed sync and the outdoor demonstrations with light modifiers. This is a perfect add-on to Mark's Understanding Light course.

Bill Johnson
 

Marc created a great class. Early on in the class things went slow and methodically through the basics. This is important. He could have told us but instead he lead us to discover...a much more powerful learning method. Then came all the different approaches and problems, Plus if you don't feel confident, it's here to go through again if you purchased or subscribed. I give the class 100%

Thomas WIlliams
 

This is a great look at methods of using natural and artificial light on location. It is very informative as well as entertaining to see Mark on set as a working pro and making a few mistakes. This is a practical and easy to understand course. We’ll done!

Student Work

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