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Speedlight Photography Basics

Lesson 16 of 21

Shoot: Short and Broad Light

Mike Fulton

Speedlight Photography Basics

Mike Fulton

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Lesson Info

16. Shoot: Short and Broad Light


Lesson Info

Shoot: Short and Broad Light

All right so engagement session hope you'll know each other well enough so I want you to turn around right kind of go like this you like you're just two people simple pose it's a simple pose I'm just trying to show a problem I want you to be right here okay we do this you can put your arm around whatever she didn't slap you I don't want to get in trouble all right but this on because I don't really want the hair light for this one but one thing that I want you to see is placement of flash so you have the flash here I'm just simply kind of tilt your head towards her is a little bit okay like you like her yeah perfect one two three all right all t t all the same exposure that we had before so we haven't said what you see the shadow between their faces it's gonna happen this is where the placement opposing really helps when you have two people so several ways of handling this one don't put his head so close to her to pull him a little bit forward you put your arm around like you like her ...

but from there bring your head for just kind of tilt your head forward just a little I'm never going to notice anything in the photo if I just do that go back to where you are and then only for a little bit never going to notice anything and just that little separation. And I hope you can see it over here. Just this little separation by him bringing his head forward now allows the light on this side to capture her and him without that shadow. Just that little bit of difference. So when I set this up and I have one little flash that's all I got I got the sun in the background let's say, I don't even have that one only have one wireless flash going out here. I'm eating for my son, so that gives me a beautiful rim light on both of them. Now I have to figure out how I'm not going. I'm going to get light on both of them. I put the taller person on the other side of this light, the taller person away from my main light and then allow him or her to hope most of time him come in and just kind of been a little bit just a little bit a little bit. I know peter hurley's, a great headshot artists, and he does that he does a little chicken neck thing, which I think is awesome because it's made me a lot of money and it's kind of the same thing, I just tell him to bend a little bit at the waist just been a little forward then you're never gonna notice especially we're just shooting from here up. I'm never going to notice it and is going to completely take away that shadow. So do that for me turn your body a little bit yeah, so again, nothing creativity here, nothing creative just kind of show you shadows gone lights on both of them now you confined to in their face and get the patterns where you want it. So this is what I always construct. So when you see my engagement sessions and I have two people, the tallest person is always away from amane. I bring them in and also works because when you comes in, you're going to turn away from the light turn your nose towards the light he's abroad lit towards the light works well for my girl or where from well, from a boy from a light over the side. So all that short, light, broad light I'm doing it right here and I'm taking away the shadows that makes sense. So with that and if you notice once I have all the light patterns, I mean all the camera settings where have I can shoot anywhere really not having a just anything else again? The only thing I have to worry about now supposing my client and interacted with them and that's huge because I don't have to constantly keep changing things I don't have to keep coming up like meat and I don't have to do anything all I do is just adjust my if I have this one life with the z stand up pick it up we go to the next location we set it down I kind of telling stand where they want maybe sit on the rock do whatever I put my light down as I'm talking to him like all that looks great you come on the floor you come little backwards I'm setting up the light come back everything is gonna be the same and I shoot look at my life maybe just a little bit boob next location it's that fast it's that easy flash so that's so that's where we're going and we're that's two for two I think no that's good know exactly that's what I was going to say so kind of getting that same pose again so let's say it's very cloudy sunny cloudy sunny, cloudy day what the heck is that? A very cloudy day in seattle and so yes, you could do it this way in front but I choose to do it in the back because if I have shadows the harshest part of the light is going to be behind and it's not going to create a shadow from them if I do it in front and I could constant there's something I could actually bounce light or something there could be some shadows or somehow on front and I want the brightest part of the light behind them so I will shadow the front part of the light feather the front part of light on them and so I'll do that and again this is where depending on what you have it set on the zoom which is on twenty four because I know we were changing it by the way the zoom is one feature it is changing because there are some controls that can change it man you know I mean physically from your ready control but the zoom for the most part is one thing you have to physically come over and change on your slave flashes so you have to come over I can't with this set up change my zoom, my master flash to my slave flash so you want to change the zoom you want to come over to the slave flash, adjust it and then come back over because this light's on ly sending the signal he's not gonna do anything but you changed the zoom on this that makes sense right? Same shot every day before but I'm feathering a little bit probably needs to be feathered mohr didn't really didn't you show different little bit little bit softer now of course I missed the focus so that's a really good photographer but let me focus a little bit, feather it back a little bit more, put it in manual focus again I mean off put it in auto focus instead of manual focus but notice by me father in it what happens here? I'm starting to get in this bad so if you wanted to see that you can actually do it this way and I apologize in advance same post gas so now you're gonna have more of a flat light because now the light's going to fill in their face it's better but it's not a strong shadows is still there I would get her to move her nose towards a light again always always, always, always so when I'm photographing and I'm talking and they're posing going to do it and was going exactly just big difference and we'll take the exact same shot and you'll be able to see just a little bit of nose change for macy shadow gone just by turning that and you notice how the light on the side look out slims that chin down see the shadow down here it takes away if she had any double chan it would be gone its limbs or face it really brings in her cheekbones those air all positive all positives and him who cares he's the guy just brought light him and get done with it he's not gonna care but what no it does and you can in the shadow literally drops it off and it makes him stronger too which is also always good for guys makes a big jaw line makes him look manly but this is easy one light now again we talked about diffusers we talked about all the stuff you can add diffusers you could do all this so if I didn't have that diffuser I could shoot more direct on him that's a given I'm we've passed it a few sore point you add that to the mix of what we're talking about I'm trying to talk about light placement at this point I don't want you to get too confused on everything does that make sense? So this is what I want to do and also ladies for the guys when you're posing, you see it don't love keep your hands in your pockets that's great cause that's where my cia has his thumbs out great thing to do don't put the hands all the way in the pocket because one it makes it looks like they're playing with themselves and this's adult show somebody trying to make some also looked like they don't have any hands so thumb out or thumbing with fingers out don't ever do everything and it just depends on which way they're comfortable with but always try to do that it really, really, really looks weird when they have all their hands and so that you were doing great. I just wanna bring that and that you know that picture you have right there this one is that a one or a two light set up? This is the one light set up with the sun is a second so it's technically two lights down by the water yep that's that's our beach very blurry back right is our beach so the light is here coming in here and then we use the sun is the hairline so member in the studio with shots of the kids they had a little fake gun whatever that's that that's the exact same light post pattern but the light turned away from here looking into the light so because we're staying I'm standing in the water with light and then using the sun very, very simple here's some more that we just went over feel like we just talked about that how you literally khun even the ratio out very simple you notice how we have the hands the fingers out like I just talked about yesterday but I wanted to see simple look just what we just did with macy with her nose simple turn how much change that makes without any change of the light pattern and I want you and I want you to understand that with the flash you could do the exact same thing I'm putting in the studio shots because the light is easier for you to visualize it see and I think it's a better teaching tool hairline huge difference with caroline this is this is my pet peeve I'm a hair like freak I'm a hair light freak I have to have a hairline rim light our hair falls right into the background and without it it just kind of a born image and then it just comes to life and I left it in just to show you but many times we actually show images like that we give that to them and if you actually put the light up in that corner many times especially here in seattle it'll actually make it look like the sun you can put a little gel on it to soften up and it actually will you khun emulate the son in your images because I have some coming out it will show you that again lighting patterns again very simple huge room lights that's what I want you to do now in order to do this meter for the background and you'd really underexposed and in your room lights would show up you really like she would come through so pretend this is a shot outside this could be the sun this could be the artificial and then we'd have the main farther back straight on lighten up their face very similar to what we just did with the gentleman that makes sense you're all saying yes I hope it does do you feel more comfortable now do you think it's gonna help yu what yu very much so I think it's going to take it to the next what besides that one thing is there any other thing you think it helped because I want to make sure I cover everything because after this point I'm gonna be shooting a lot and I want to make sure I get your answer where we going way have any online too from people coming on I'll think about that I think you're doing great okay okay I don't want to put you on the spot but answer me now all right so remember background first don't care about any of you walk around if you're outside st wherever you find the place that you want you visualize and again they always do this I don't know what it helps matthew did that the other day on here visualize the shot that you won't you find it stick them in that general area so you visualize you can look at your camera the shot that you want generally placed the lights however many you have where you want that to fall on them which you'll find two in a little bit later get the air that you want to shoot focus on the background on ly exposed for the background and that's your exposure compensation the meter in your camera expose that properly, take the even exposure and then step your way down until you're happy with what the background looks like. If you're out in full sun, which will hopefully will be next hour on this on the roof, it might be two, three stops, but if I'm in a dark alleyway like the shot before, it might only be half a stop because the sun is blocked out and it's not as bright. The background is very equal exposure to my four grand, but this is where you add flash to taste the maura under exposed, the more flashy the image will look because I'm taking out all the ambient light that's naturally there, the more natural I want the image to look with just a little bit of kiss like them or even exposure, I'm going to be in the exposure, compensation the meter in your camera. Once you get the background where you want it, then I don't touch my camera setting and I know I'm repeating myself, but I'm doing it on purpose because this is important once you get that you leave it alone, then you on ly worried about your flash or flashes? Turn him on exposed just for the main gate the main first because that's the main part of your image get the main where you want it happy with it if that's the power you don't touch your flash compensation power anymore and then you use the distance the subject for your other lights to find tune them where you want him to be take the shot everything should be there then you can go to the art part then you can go to the hands opposing what we kind of did with them at the end making sure the shadows or not they're on I know we really stepped through but I showed a lot of issues on purpose so you could see those and how easy it is just that head turn turn that knows the light bring him forward those air too so simple but so easy steps you start doing that everything falls together after that it's just repeat the process every section you got the process down and then it's just repeat here repeat there it becomes flawless becomes so secondary nature you're not going any problem doing it in any lighting conditions you just either underexposed more or don't under expose more get the background where you want it and then the lights are all the same this is from sunny day in sf thanks um what does mike mean by even exposure? Does he mean evaluative meet oring perfect great question and I apologize for not explaining that well enough I get passionate, I kind of forget yes in my camera in your camera them and it's very hard to see but the actual meat ary mode the meter that I have in my camera rights there if you can actually I don't know you see the one you always see assumes you push your shutter button that's going to show you that's what I'm talking about if I'm even exposure I'm going to be even on that meter right in the center for the nikon people if I underexposed again it goes to the right for cannon will go to the left so I always want you to start out at even exposure on that meter I'm trying to simplify it as much as I can start off even that's what if you're a natural life photographer your actually a little over exposed in that area? But I want you to start off even and see what the camera sees and we're going to be doing this I'm gonna be doing this on the roof so it'll all be a lot clear then when you see the examples do that and then under exposed from there so that's that's what I'm talking about when I talk about even exposure if it's even flash it's the flash compensation and that's when it's almost all my flash awesome might well from hey, you will et you imagine that's australia mentions how reliable do you find optical trigger ring in broad daylight if it's very reliable if you do really want to things and we talked about a little bit yesterday but I'm gonna kind of regenerated because now that you have a little bit more going on, I think you'll understand it better outside and bright sun that's why I like using the external flash because it has all the light meter's I mean, all the light patterns, all the light waves here this will work if my subjects is you guys, my subject is the camera this will work this is the best this is my this is what's sending the signal and this is screaming at this signal the part that picks it up now the problem that I have with a lot of photographers that I want to think there knowing what they're doing, but they don't is what we talked about bounced lighting even though this is not exposing in the image it's only my wireless transmitter, they think, oh, I don't want my flash to go towards my client I gotta be cool, I got to be a professional photographer, I gotta bounce that I don't want it in their eyes so here and I'll do it, I don't know did that go off because it's bouncing all ceiling when I go outside now, instead of me talking to the ceiling and coming down, I'm talking to the satellite now to space. And this year, the heck is not going to expose that. And so, yeah, then you're gonna have a problem with optical. But if you understand how optical works is extremely reliable, you just need to understand the limitations and work within that and actually used equipment to the fullest extent and extreme lining.

Class Description

Join Mike Fulton for a comprehensive course on speedlight photography — including how to use this versatile flash system to increase efficiency and expand your creative ability.

In this course, you’ll master all of the many buttons and features of speedlights. You’ll learn about each of your flash’s settings: manual, TTL, direct, bounce, off-camera, and more. You’ll explore the relationship between your camera and your flash, so you can move away from shooting in auto mode and toward capturing more nuanced, dynamic images. You’ll troubleshoot common flash issues and gain confidence manipulating the light from your speedlights to get exactly the look you want in your photographs. Mike will also cover the lighting choices that take an image from being just nice to look at to being highly marketable.

This speedlight photography course is the definitive experience for anyone ready to become an expert user of this powerful, adaptable lighting system.



Someone should tell this nice guy, Mike that he should restrain his comments and do his homework and structure the course and sticks to it. Of 100s of pictures he took not even one was inspiring or great shot. Yes, he did say that "I am not going to make good image", why not I ask? I do believe he is not only a nice individual but knows the tech side, not sure if he can make artistic images.

a Creativelive Student

I am in the midst of watching this class through the videos I purchased and am very impressed by how in depth the information is. VERY happy with this purchase. I like Mike’s ability to make concepts easy to understand and also that he shows you by example what he means. As a direct result of watching this class, while visiting family yesterday I found myself looking at my grandson’s face as light was shining on him through a window and thinking to myself, “Oh, that is short lighting and when he turns his face it becomes broad lighting.” Thanks, Mike. Can’t wait to see what other gems of understanding I have in store for me in the rest of the class videos.


Excellent course, especially when I learnt something within the first 5 mins of watching it. I have found Creative Live courses to be very thorough in detail and equally practical in application. 10 out of 10 Creative Live support has also been 💯 % helpful Thanks guys..