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Studio Lighting - The Power of Control

Lesson 6 of 30

Tools of Light Q & A

Tony Corbell

Studio Lighting - The Power of Control

Tony Corbell

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Lesson Info

6. Tools of Light Q & A


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2 Mono Lights & Pack Lights Duration:29:32
3 Light Controls & Shaping Duration:30:36
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8 Shoot: Painting with Light Duration:26:01

Lesson Info

Tools of Light Q & A

Yes sir tony I did have one question you just will probably get into it later this week but you caught some our sense of uh interested me you said you've seen the catch lighter the twinkle in their eye when you turn that what are you looking for when your name in the light at the model dependent that's a great question depending on the the type of photograph it is if it is a traditional portrait I want to make sure that I've got a good solid catch light in both eyes and because because the eyes are everything if you lose the eyes you really do lose the picture um and I mean, you know you you think about the snap are the sparkle or that great look I would be dead if I lost those highlights in her eyes on that one over there on the far left the three quarter standing it's a pretty directional light but there is a great highlight at one o'clock in both eyes and and I'm always going to make sure that I try to get that in there because it does bring the picture to life as long as that light...

is in those eyes you can almost be forgiven for a lot of sins but not that one if you miss the eyes you're kind of dead and you know you're not going to have the sales that you want it'll sustain a career but again, for me, that that was a huge revelation when I started moving that reflector from, you know, if I'm on the side of you looking at looking at her from here instead of that being here, it was huge revelation for me when I started reflecting that light from here big, big difference, ok? Yeah. So ready. I think we're good. Ready to go? Yeah, thank you, tessa eso we're getting a couple of questions, one from misty and then we have somebody else. Sorry, don't catch your name. If you're using studio lighting, do you need to cover the windows to avoid mixing the different types of light? And how about the ambient light in your studio? What is best practices plays? In most cases, the studio lights will overpower whatever is going on. In most cases, they will overpower your ambient light, but there are times when you can get yourself in trouble not so much with exposure, but you could get yourself in trouble with a little bit of color balance issues. But again, most cases, when that stroke fires, it is going to overpower whatever is going on for me, though I want to kill the ambient light, mostly jim, because I'm worried about my backgrounds in any contamination. Getting on something that I'm trying to keep dark and like a like a I'm trying to shoot against a white war like we've got this wonderful white brick we're going to be using later if I'm trying to keep the light off of those things sometimes ambient light will truly affect me and so it's kind of an issue so it is a good idea to pull down the ambiance whenever you can close the windows when you can do it just it will minimize not just the problems but it will also maximize what you see is what you get and that's a huge that's is important as maximizing the problems cool you know love it well let's see do we have any questions here in the audience? I have an opportunity when you do like a group shot like you were showing with the with the fall off can you expect to get a catch light in absolutely okay absolutely have a cash flow and everybody's eyes you know it's interesting too when you think about this um it's funny how how exposure wise I was always told when I first started I was told well, you know someone's got really really dark skin in my one over exposed a little bit and if you got some really, really light skin you might wanna underexposed just a little bit just so their skin looks good well wait a minute what if they get married you know are you going to tell people sorry I can't photograph you want because I can't tell you what exposure is going to be one of us got white skin one has got black skin I mean you you know that's that's always an issue any time I've got a group I mean in any time I shoot anything my incident meter is my rock and whatever the dome of that meter tells me to do with the dome of that meter place that that light source is exactly what I do within a tenth of the stop I don't very ever and I never missed my exposures ever so I fixed it so I fix it from a from a from an objective standpoint and then from a subject of standpoint so I'll make sure that I got exposure nailed and I'll make sure there's a catch like everybody's eyes both eyes unless it's a picture that doesn't call for that sometimes there's especially shot that doesn't call for that but for the most part for a family you betcha and with glasses your glasses can be a real problem and challenge for some photographers and especially the photographers that have a phil light fixed in the back of the studio that can be a real issue and so for the first I guess eight years of my career I worked with a phil light in the studio and my biggest challenge was glasses I would I would I would fill that was defined as non directional non speculator light source that would be at a level below the main light. Okay, so my main light let's say reads f ate my fill out my read f five six well, the problem was that the film light would be to be non directional it's got to be in line with my camera back behind me in a kind of high usually and some people use an umbrella for that but but it gave me five highlights that I didn't like it would give me a hot spot on the chin on the tip of the nose right between the eyes and on both cheeks and it would give me an extra catch light right in the middle of the eyes and I didn't like that so I stopped using phil light well that threw everybody in the busy tony's life he's gonna feel like how are you handling your shadows? Well, that was easy reflectors quite a bit if I'm doing a big group I will you I feel like if it's more than four, five, six people I'll use a feel like but I would rather not so I choose not to do remain groups the glasses are an issue but the one thing about glasses glare on glasses well, we could talk about the short light and broad light situation and which way you light a face from the left or the right and I can tell you that in the case where let's say there's my life source I'm turned here and I bring my head back to the life this way if your camera catherine if your camera you're exactly on access with my reflection, you're going to see it perfectly right there but if I'm turned this way and my head is turned this way, you'll never see it because now my glasses not on access with that remember the old rule that says angle of incidence equals the angle of reflect it's so light bounces away at the exact same angle that it comes in and with convex glasses especially its bed and you almost have to have this kind of the light where you're lighting one side of the face not lighting with the face into the light because it's a real issue so okay tony question from pro photographer if you were using multiple lights are you concerned with multiple catch lights in the eyes? Do you ever remove or alter catch lights in post and then photo to asked is multi is to catch lights and no, no you asked five tigers in five totally different answers, so it is a subjective thing but let me get let me tell you the way I think about it um first of all, the catch lights with multiple catch lights for years I was told that we had a spot out that extra caseload in the eye you've got to remove it on film days he would spot it off with pencils and dies digitally you go in and cluttered up and yet every fashion magazine in the world has all the cats lights in the ice there nobody ever remove sketch lines they're they're they're all there people who used to seeing him I think so in this picture in the centre for example that can't slide is there and it saw it it was there on purpose I was trying to create that that look that vogue cover look so it absolutely is there for that reason because it's what people are used to seeing so why would I want to get rid of it? I placed it there on purpose multiple highlights in the eyes is not an issue unless and this is then and I have to say this for new photographer starting out the issue could be a problem if you're using twin main lights and what I mean by that is let's say that I'm I'm the subject and I'm standing here and you're talking for here and you've got a main light right there at a forty five and you've got another main light right there to forty five and they're both coming on my face that's a no no first off, because you're going to get the to catch lights, is that the exact catch lights is what lights at the exact same place in the eye, but on the opposite side and second off, I don't have a directional. I don't have a main light, you have to have a mainline. There has to be a key light on this photograph, so if I've lived my subjects properly for pro photo, if I've lived my subjects properly, there won't be an issue with removing or having multiple catch lights. I should have won unless in the case of this, where I'm trying to bounce one back in there, I will almost never have more than one light on the face. So it's never been an issue for me. I can have ten lights on the set, but I might usually have one light on the face, so that multiple cats lights is not a big issue very often, but it's a great, great question. I'm glad you brought it up. Awesome, serious, definitely we have. Ah, let's, take a question from mom, could you give your personal opinion about ring lights? Ring lights are also, I think, green lights, I didn't understand ring lights for a long time, and I don't use one on the day today, they can you for people who may not know what their could you explain what? Yeah, can I just can I just go to the board and kind of draw this off real quick and show you what I'm talking about but a ring life is really you know here's a society there's my tripod here in my lens there's my camera ok so basically is a light source that fits right that you shoot right through the center of and it is a it is a light source that is circular that has a whole that I stick my lens through my lens goes through that hole and it's a circular source that's round and it's directly in proportion with moments so wherever I go it's basically shadow lis a shadow this light source what's cool about that is some people's skin doesn't handle it quite is nicely but there's two or three things that are very distinct about it one is the catch like the catch line, the eye being a speculator ity mirrored image of whatever create the life that's one issue the speculum highlight from a ring light is unlike any reflection you've ever seen in somebody's eye it's funky it's it can be thought of as weird and funky but it's very contemporary it's very hot right now and if I'm working on a background that's kind of lighter tone ality if I'm within say eight or ten feet or less to that background my subjects will have this little soft black shadow around their shoulders head arms that's really cool and you can't get it any other way but you get with england it's very cool I think everybody should rent one and try one I think they're great but you but you need to test it, play with it you're going to like it on people past forty or fifty ok sixty there you go. All right, let me rephrase that you're gonna love it on people under fifty or sixty has that heads perfect I think I've got time for about one more question let's go from with karen from katie a photography take it back a little bit how do you side which side of this subject you want your key light on? How do you start on that placement? Well, you know the relation with the funny answer the funny answer is worse. Which side is the plug on? Where can you pull again for me I do a couple of things I do kind of a facial analysis if you will by just looking at the face and almost everybody has one eye a little bit bigger than the other almost everybody hasn't knows that's a little bit cook and almost everybody has a part in their hair their little things like that um if there's a part in the hair I want a life I want that that part of the face to be little more light into the part if that makes any sense and so I'll often look something like if if if amy lynn right if amy lin's part was a lot more prominent I would turn her that way and bring her face back this way and then I would light into her into the part and the reason for that is if I like opposite the park the hair appears to have a bigger bump for if I light into the part the hair looks more symmetrical if you will lessen bump yeah so I do look for that and then I also like to say if if if someone's got a nose that's kind of leaning that way I want to shoot into that not against it I want I want a complimentary life complimentary like this so I'm pretty pretty watchful of that sort of thing but I don't really look at a face and say I think you know like like your hair is perfect if I liked from over here so I might I might turn your shoulders that way just spend that way a little bit and I just bring your head back this way perfect and I mean a lot right into your part this way and now I'm not throwing a shadow over your eye from that hair that's coming down over your right eye. But if I live from over here, I could get myself in real trouble.

Class Description

Get ready to learn how the lighting secrets every sought-after photographer needs to know. Join creativeLIVE for an in-depth immersion into understanding and controlling in-studio light.

Taught by award-winning photographer Tony Corbell, you’ll explore how to work with a wide variety of lighting tools. Tony will explain how a photograph’s look and feel are influenced by the size, shape, and placement of its light source. You’ll learn about correct light metering techniques and the role logic and physics play in metering and working with light. Tony will cover basic, subtle lighting adjustments that transform photos. You’ll have a front-row seat as Tony applies his one-of-a-kind lighting techniques live in-studio as he shoots both portraits and still-life photos.

By the end of this course, you’ll have a new and improved skill set for working with light and achieving jaw-dropping results.


AJ Photography Ireland

Watching this Course from Ireland live, and at my leisure having purchased the course, I cannot praise Tony Corbell enough. I felt I was right there in the Classroom with him and gained so, so much from stunning course. He really does explain the techniques he uses so well and is one of the greatest Educators that I have seen in photography. Worth every Euro ( Dollar ) !.. Thank you Creative Live and Keep up the good work ! Andy Jay Cork Ireland.


I learned a lot from Tony´s class. Very experienced, talented, smart tips and funny comments. Generous on sharing his knowledge. I am passionate about learning portraiture since about a year or two, had bought a couple of flashlights, stands, modifiers and now the most difficult part, to have my wife and kids be patient and let me practice with them. John Cornicello did an excellent job helping with the lights and bringing his own comments too. They both did an excellent match. This is a class I will watch again from time to time. This is the second course I watch from Tony and about the 15th course I watched from Creative.

a Creativelive Student

This is just a tremendous class. I love Mr. Corbell's teaching style and appreciate his levity. Most of all, I value the expertise he brings to the subject matter. After watching the entire class, I have been able to make adjustments to my lighting that I love and feel like I have a better idea of what I am looking for with my lights. This is a terrific value at any price.