Photographing Challenging Features

 

Lesson Info

Shoot: Glasses

So we're gonna talk about glasses, for the most part. What do you wanna start with, how do you wanna do it? With the small light. Alright. So we can try to get a pinpoint in there. Yeah, okay. So most of the time what people have issues with are big reflections. There are a couple rules that are really, super helpful. Let's take a look at, can I have the keynote up? Great, so this is the other section. Alright, so a couple tips for photographing glasses that do bad things. The problem that you're having with the glasses is the whole, it's the angle of incidences, the angle of refraction, you know how you never, reflection nobody paid attention in school, that basically the angle that it's bouncing in is the angle it's bouncing off, whatever. So what ends up happening is whatever you've got going on, that angle's kicking right back towards your camera. So try to figure out, like try to envision what angle you need to move your light in so that when it hits the glasses, it's not ...

bouncing right back at you. Like that's the math and it's the science of it. But one of the things that might help you is sticking the chin out and down, but not turning the eyes towards the light. Like that's the big one, if you turn it towards the light, it bounces and then it kicks back at you. So, that's the big one, the next one is generally, turning the body and head away from the light. So instead of facing right into it, which is going to reflect, turning away a little bit 'cause then when it hits, it bounces that way. Where as here, it hits and bounces back towards you, okay? Camera angle, actually moving around might help, but I wouldn't recommend that 'cause then you're, the way the subject looks is based on where you're moving. Figure out your light and figure out the angle of your subject, instead of just moving around. Lens choice, just as a note for this, have you guys ever seen what the really thick glasses that you get, like a distortion where you see side of their face in the side? Using a longer lens actually helps with that. It makes the distortion smaller, whereas a wider angle lens, you're actually gonna see... You guys know what I'm talking about, right? You see that little chunk and then you have to photo shop it out. So longer lenses actually reduce the amount that you see of that effect. Lighting, so the light, if you light them flat on, it's gonna be a problem. 'Cause it lights on them and then it kicks it back. It can help a little bit to change their angle, 'cause it lights them and it kicks it a different direction, but for the most part, you wanna light at an angle opposite of the face. It's easier if I show this, you'll be able to see it. Retouching, no simple trick, it's cloning. If there's big highlights, which is a pain. You can copy, if someones straight on, you can copy one part of the eye to the other, but usually they're turned. So then you have to copy it and warp it and the light changes and then it's no longer applicable. So try not to get to that point. So let's just look at this. The other thing is, nowadays, for the most part, it's getting better because many glasses have the non-glare effect, you get that green, right? Like it's this little green or purple, right? Does anyone have a green and purple tint? You can fix that in photo shop, it's just, who wants to do it, so for example, can you turn this way just a little bit? Super, can you lift your chin up for me? Alright, so this is the, oh let me switch my lens. This is an example. Chin up just a little bit more. If you ever look at, oh wait, exposure. Okay, turn it down just a bit. Which way's down, this way? Oh it was down, alright. Down all the way. Okay, here we go. Chin up just a little more, yeah good, okay. Okay so that's like, you know, the angle the angle that he has, his face has a reflection. It's actually easy to avoid reflections with smaller light sources because there's less areas for it to reflect. So I gotta do very little, lower your chin a little bit. Done, like it's, you don't have to do much. So my point is, if you've got a smaller light source, it's actually easier to avoid the reflection, but don't switch to a smaller light source just to do that because then it changes the quality of light. The smaller the light source is, the harder the light and then you're compromising. Chin up just a little, chin up a little bit more. (camera clicks) Okay, now. But I mean, I only had to have him lower his chin like 2 millimeters and the effect was gone. But the other problem that you run into in a situation like this, is you got the shadows. This is why I just say, use your modeling light. You have to pay attention to the modeling light in order to move it around, to change the shadow so they're not going across the eye. But a larger light source fixes this problem. But a larger light source is where you run into the problem with the reflections. So, lets take a look, I'm gonna switch over to the umbrella. And can you turn this way just a little bit more? Great and this should be good. Alright, let's move in. Start with it further away? Alright and can you bring it in a little bit closer, John? Yeah, of course. And a little bit further back that way, okay good. Alright, so he's actually got non-glare glasses. Just so you all know, so it's not terrible. But you'll see, and this is a pain to photo shop out. That, notice I've got the green because of the non-glare and there is a reflection where it's brighter and you can kinda see the lens in the glasses, but from the previous shot, harder light gives you the shadows from the glasses here and then also on his eye. Soon as I turn to a soft light source, it gets rid of those shadows, that's not a problem anymore. But I've got that greenish hue, so the solution is this. Can I have you turn away from the light source? Okay and can you just bring it this way just a little bit 'cause angles, alright. Good, maybe just a little bit more. Okay, so in this instance, I'm gonna do one before after. Can you just rotate that way one more time. Okay so we're doing, here's a reflection, look at me. (camera clicks) Okay, one of the tips that John and I were talking about is sometimes you won't, it won't look terrible, if you bring the light really close because what happens is when you bring it close, there's a reflection, it's just even. So it doesn't bother you as much. If they don't have non-glare glasses, it will just be a reflection, but he has non-glare glasses, but it's not as, it's not as bad, but it's still here. But to fix, if I turn him away, and then turn your head back towards me. Great, a little bit more towards me with your chin, keep coming, right there okay. (camera clicks) Okay, good. You have no reflection because here's what's happening, is you've got, the light's coming in here and it's bouncing off this way, okay? However, turn back towards me. In this instance, it's bouncing in here and it's bouncing back towards me. Or in certain cases, depending on, it's actually catching this edge of the light. It's that edge that then comes right back. So that's the problem you'll get. So the long and short of it is something that you would call, just broad lighting them and turning them away from the light, so something like this. In a group of people, you got a whole family and there's somebody with glasses, just make sure where you pose them in the family group, it's away from that main light source. Instead of putting grandma and grandpa with the glasses facing this way, put grandma and grandpa over here, facing this way. I'm gonna summarize that in two sentences and move on. So, thank you, thank you. Thank you. Excellent, okay. (audience applause) So my quick thing is, it's easier to avoid reflections when you have a small light source, but a small light source gives you shadows. And it's also not quite as flattering, but you get that large light source, you've got a ton of reflection, you can bring it closer and sometimes fill out the glasses so you don't see it. Or you can turn them so the light bounces away.

Photographers are tasked with flattering every subject that steps in front of their lens. Typically, those subjects are everyday people, not professional models. This can mean working with some challenging features along with varying degrees of confidence. Canon Explorer of Light and well-known fashion photographer Lindsay Adler walks through understanding the face and body as well as the photographic tools available to you make your clients best side shine. These features could range from a pronounced nose, large forehead, glasses, asymmetrical features, or defined wrinkles. In this course Lindsay will walk you through: 

  • How to analyze a face and draw attention to the strengths within it 
  • Posing and lighting techniques for challenging facial features 
  • Posing and lighting techniques for the skin and body 
  • Retouching tips for skin, glasses or discolored teeth 
This course will cover many challenging features and show you how posing, camera angles, lens choice and lighting can work together to help you have confidence in every shoot.

 
 
 
 

Reviews

  • This class was amazing! It was great seeing a demo class with real people. As a wedding photographer that specializes in offbeat/non traditional couples, it is always good to see how I can enhance all my clients beautiful features, and make them feel their best and confident when I am taking their photos!
  • I was so excited to get the chance to learn from Lindsay live, and this course did not disappoint! The techniques she shared were insightful and straightforward. I felt like seeing them on different subjects throughout the day really helped to cement the concepts and grow my photography tools to bring out the best in those I'm photographing. I'm not a studio photographer, but the ideas apply in natural light as well.
  • More than great, you are awesome teacher, thanks a lot!