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SLR Lounge Live Q and A and Image Critique

Lesson 26 of 29

Setting Up Lighting for a Reception

Pye Jirsa

SLR Lounge Live Q and A and Image Critique

Pye Jirsa

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Lesson Info

26. Setting Up Lighting for a Reception

Lesson Info

Setting Up Lighting for a Reception

Let's start with a question about a wedding photography. Can you? This is from Ando. So can you share your speed Light lighting set up for wedding receptions, Which is one of those hard ones, I think, especially for new photographers. Love it. So glad I have my monolith do this. Okay? We're gonna We're actually doing a We're filming a full seven part DVD Siris on weddings, and we're gonna be kicking it off with Creative Live at the end of this year. Maybe beginning of next year is gonna be awesome. But one of the things that were covering is reception lighting. It's a beast. So let's say that this is our reception. We're gonna do a top down view of a reception. This is our dance floor. You have the DJs right here with its speakers and all this crazy lights, okay? And we have tables. LA should be an event designer. I'm just kidding. That would be a nightmare of a job. Be a hard job, man. R r coordinators air so frickin skilled. Okay, so what we'll do is the lighting set up for one of th...

ese rooms is generally gonna be this. We typically are not gonna want to shoot this way. We don't want to shoot that way because it's the least interesting place in the room. The least interesting place in the room is to look at the D. J and what they're doing. Generally, that's not where the good decorations are. Generally, all the good spots toe look are this way, this way, this way, this way. Right. You go into the corners to just not directly to the stage. So what we'll do and we'll choose the four corners of the room, but will generally set up any way between 2 to 4 flashes. So to four, you're gonna go CTO or balanced for the room. They're gonna be 1/16 toe, 1 32nd power. This is going to depend on your camera settings because if you're shooting at 1600 at 2.8, you might need it at 1/8. If you're 600 to 1/16 it also depends on the distance to the floor. They're gonna be zoomed to say all the way, sometimes grated. Okay, so 12345 So in a room like this, we would place it. You could do a flash right here. What is that? Is there an international symbol per fish? There's, like the three lives What? The three lines that, like on the flash head, like the light lightning boat. All right, so we have a flash. So we're just gonna will be a lightning bolt and that lightning bolts gonna face this way. And now lightning bolt and that lightning bolt faces this way. And in a lightning bolt in that lighting will face is this way in a lightning bolt and that lighting will freeze it this way. Notice that all the lightning bolts go straight to the center of the dance floor. Everything aims towards the center of the dance, for we generally go clockwise in terms of referencing. So this is a B, C d. Or if you're using groups or whatever it is, But we've set up these on different channels. So that way, as are moving, we can switch. So we're never gonna shoot this way. Right? But when I'm shooting this way or kind of in this direction, I'm gonna turn on B. I'll flip it on my camera and I'll shoot in that direction. This light, which is CTO Balanced is gonna be 1 to 1 32nd power. It is zoomed in all the way, and sometimes it's gritted if it's very close to where we're using it. If it's not, if it's further back or if we need to funnel light toe one place will grit it. But otherwise it's just bear. What that light is gonna do is create a soft backlight on everything that it hits. Okay, so when that light fires forward and I'm shooting in that direction some shooting facing this way. Okay, that lights coming directly towards me. Everybody's heads get backlit in a shot, and it looks like we have studio lighting set up. It looks like there's back lights and stage lights hitting everybody type thing. What it doesn't do is wash out the room like going towards the walls, washes out the room. You lose your color, you lose your ambience, let me show you guys pull up fine. A wedding. Okay. Okay. So good on. See, this is a good example. Right here. So check this out. See this? See this little back? Like a little hair light. Little room light right there. See how it's hitting their out sitting there, all these those are the back lights in the room, that air coming and firing forward towards us. And then all we're doing is we're using are on camera flash to generally their bounce back in behind us, up the ceiling to the side if you're really in a pinch. Like I did a lot of outdoor stuff this last weekend cause we're shooting outdoors for the reception both times, um, where did they can you know? Oh, scrapped this guy on gravel flash. Okay, this is a little bit obnoxious to be opening up at somebody's wedding, But if I'm outdoors and there's nothing to bounce off all around me, it's like pitch black. I can very easily just do this and say, Hey, you want a shot? Cool And then just bounce right off this OK and in the flash bounces directly office and comes into his face. They just go around quick, so it's a very simple bounce technique. It opens up the light a little bit and let you get a nicer quality than going direct flash. But that's it. In conjunction with whatever background lights. The only thing you want to make sure is that when you are photographing this way, you never turn on C or D. You do not turn on flashes that air firing in your direction. You mean like you don't fire with flashes? Why, that's one. It'll wash everything out to every single thing, every centerpiece, every table. Every single thing that's in this area is going to cast a shadow directly on the wall that you're shooting towards. So the first thing when I get back in 1/3 shooter who's in training, I look at the photo. I see a shadow around like, Dude, you gotta turn off the flash behind you Can't. You can only shoot against your flash is not with them. Cool. A couple follow up questions to think these girls have some, too. Oh, great. You the right to photographers on the waiting. Can the bills manager this set up, or just one photographer who has a trigger? Can our marriage This We require all of our shooters to use the like to have this set up. Now they can choose if they want to bring their own flashes or if they just want to bring in extra trigger these air always. You know, these are always at, like, 1 16 to 1 32nd power. So they're generally not firing at a very high power. So if one or even two of the photographers share the same just did they just have the same transceiver? They can use the same system. Nobody's gonna miss any shots because the recycled times air instantaneously instantaneous without Billy. Great. That was actually kind of similar question on that had come through, which was adding an off camera flash. Seems really difficult when you're shooting by yourself when you don't have somebody to help hold in a just lights. How do you still manage creative lighting at a wedding? That was literally I mean, like all actually tether and just show you that it actually does work. So it works, people. Here comes the boom. See if, like Graham is gonna play with us, play nice. Later. Um, play nice. Ha. Magic. Okay, Beilin, my white balance. No, you're getting it, Simon. Okay. I'm gonna balance my seem to be how I want it. I'm gonna go ahead and dial in my flash power, and then I can just hold it up look at where my flashes going and get a quick little okay and then look at it without Okay, so when you're flying solo and you need to get some light on somebody, it's pretty doing easy. Just toe Put that light on my hand, holding it yourself right. It's really easy. Now when you're at 1632 100 so on your shooting wide open. Usually I'll shoot like F two. I'll have fast primes like a 50 nifty 50 would work. You know, you have a fast prime so that you can get down to a wide open appetite, a reception go to 1630 tenderize. So most cameras can handle it these days and be totally fine. Give you good images. You hold that thing up and I just want to keep Simon's face on here a little longer. Um, but yeah, you hold it up and get a nice little bounce off of it. So very easy. And I could still do that within one life set up. I can go set up a light put in the back and just walk around doing that the whole time. Great. And is that this is a question from Phil Birdie. Is that somewhere? Teoh? What lighting equipment would you recommend for an outdoor party at night with one photographer? Outdoor party with night. It's gonna be the same exact thing. This thing with your backlight set up. I wish I could show you guys the images from this past weekend. The clients this last week in were private, but it's the exact same thing. Onley differences. If we're doing a big group portrait like, rather than doing what I just did, I'll just have my assistant. Like when we're gonna do a big report it and they know that we're taking a photograph and stuff like that. I'll just have my assistant open up the white stand behind me, and we'll bounce and throw the light backwards off of it. So it looks like this. You can do this by yourself too, if you're a ninja. Okay, so I'm gonna zoom to 24 cause member you want you need the light to open up and hit this fairly quickly. It's gonna be weird. All right. Okay. And then let me do it without, and your flash card is gonna dictate, like how you want to look, You know how strong you want that light to be. Where's photo shop are like? Here we go. So check this out. You can see. Look at the Mac right here. Do you see that reflector catching the light and opening it up? Look at how big the light source became like we're literally using half the reflectors, that light source that became a big soft box place right behind my head. Right, And it pushed that light forward for a fill flash. So there's the fill that you guys can see on everybody, so it makes really different. Now keep in mind that were shooting at 100. So remember, at night time we're shooting at 1600 Aiso. So that amount of flash power is far more than I need. I could be shooting at 1/ 1 16 I think that was at 18 for just that. Fill flash. So 1/8 during nighttime is enoughto as a main light. Very simple, very easy to do. But that's a great outdoor thing. And then you're still gonna use these back lights as your outdoor set up first from online, which is a so follow up from after dark. How tall do you set your light stands? Does it matter when you're on that dance floor? Yes, I go to about the rough rule is about 6 to 6.5 feet for us. What we wanted to do is, and that's depending on if there's really high centerpieces, they need to go up a little bit higher than you go, like maybe 7 to 8 feet. But generally those little stands that I was using these guys, these guys can, for the most part gets you up high enough. So we just have a bunch of these that we take everywhere. Each lead shooter will take four. We'll show a couple different, you know, in the course is we actually have a few different stand set us. But this is one, and you can see that this gets me about up to seven feet. So it's enough. I wouldn't I wouldn't do this to make it go up higher. Some people will do this. Don't do that because, you know it's very easy toe tip fall, so keep it wide open. Remember that grand parents and people that are walking around they might not see these types of things, and we have had them fall. Unfortunately, they didn't hurt anybody, but they have falling down. So it's always a good idea to bring something just to brace the leg. If it's in anywhere, that would be possibly people walking around well, but that's a good enough height. We just want to make sure that we're not. It's not being stopped by all the objects in the scene. It's actually reaching the dance floor. Go ahead. Um, so my question is actually in those photos that, ah, where they were sitting there is this huge like dome window and there was nothing on the ceiling to bounce off of, and there was, like, really, really like super tungsten spotlights and like it looked normal. But then in the camera, I've got either, like Super orange on everybody and read or I've got, like, the backgrounds blue. It's bleeding over into them. So you're in a scene where you have a dome above you like a glass dome that would, like absorb all your light, right? Well, just in general like, um, certain like venues that have huge windows. And there's still tons of daylight coming in. But then there's also, like really different colored order. Super just like orange lights. Where do you like? How do you get around that if you can't bounce on the ceiling or walls? Usually. So, first regarding really orange lights, usually a full CTO will still get you close enough that you can not those out, Um, and if it's not, if somehow they're using. Like I mean, even candlelight is like 2600 Kelvin, which still looks fine with a CTO gel over your main flash and having a little bit more orange lights. But if that's just not working for you, and you need to get the white balance even Mawr, you could stack gels so you could take, like a full CTO way. Have quarter CEOs. This is a full CDO as well, but if you put them two together than you get like additive coloring, right, so you take a full CTO and put another one on it to get even mawr warm and dial the flat temperature down again to get closer to where you need to be. Um, the only issues that remember that every time you stack, you lose a little light, right? You kind of see how there's a little light loss. So just rumor. That's an issue Theater issue with Bouncing is we have all of our shooters. They can either where one of two things. White shirt, black tie and black pants or black shirt. Black tight black pants. So when we have an assistant wearing black hair, black eyes, black pants, we weaken, do nighttime shutter drags very easily because they can walk on and on the the frame and not be caught when everybody else wears white shirts. So usually it almost works out. They have at least one of each. When we have 23 shooters out there with a white shirt, you always bounce off of it. So if you're on a dance when you're in a pinch, or if you're in a place that you you need something, you're gonna bring your second or bring your third that's wearing a white shirt stand right next to and you just bounce off their shirt. Just tell me, Look away. You literally bounce off the shirt just like we did with The Reflector. So this guy is gonna be like your best buddy in places because you'll be in those kind of situations a lot where you just don't have a wall. The bounce off of you don't have a ceiling, you don't have anything. It could be indoors and the outdoors. We've been in locations where our walls air like black. That's crazy, like you have nothing. It just absorbs everything. So you just hand hold one of these guys that have guessing the stopper flash disk. I left mine at home, but that's another great single. That's the one that I actually preferred. A handhold because it's small, it's small. It can tuck in somewhere. You just pop it up and you can just bounce directly off that. Then when you need to get a big group shot, you bounce off one of these.

Class Description

Pye Jirsa and CreativeLive held an open Q&A based on the lessons taught in Photography 101, Lighting 101, and Lighting 201 classes. 

This course includes questions based around the fundamentals of using your digital camera, camera flashes, and the intricacies of posing.  Pye demonstrated with live models and gear to make this a free course that truly benefits your catalog! 

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a Creativelive Student

Pye is an awesome instructor! He explains everything in a way that you understand it. He is a wealth of information. Love all of his classes!! I love Creativelive and SLR Lounge! Continue doing the great work that you do!!

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Pye is an amazing teacher! I've learned so much from him over the years - both in person and through his tutorials. What's even more amazing is that he is able to do it LIVE! He is able to clearly explain complicated concepts through easy to understand lessons. I highly recommend his courses to learn everything from the basics to advanced topics!


Wow! Pye is an awesome instructor! I've learned SO many things - nuggets of gold!