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The Business of Photography

Lesson 16 of 22

Image Review

Nigel Barker

The Business of Photography

Nigel Barker

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Lesson Info

16. Image Review


  Class Trailer
Now Playing
1 Class Introduction Duration:12:46
2 The Early Years Duration:24:31
4 Developing Your Style Duration:12:57
5 Creating Your Brand Duration:11:03
6 Confidence Duration:11:20
7 Personal Work Duration:08:21
8 Marketing Duration:12:14
10 Side Lighting Duration:08:30
11 Hollywood Lighting Duration:10:27
12 Dancer Lighting Duration:08:50
13 Editorial Lighting Duration:09:06
14 Tunnel of Light Duration:12:24
15 Back Light Duration:06:09
16 Image Review Duration:06:03
18 Connection Duration:09:31
19 Provoking Reaction Duration:11:11
21 Raw Series - Image Review Duration:08:57
22 Image Critique Duration:1:01:29

Lesson Info

Image Review

Super simple. I mean look, we've had a white background the whole time, right? And you can see here where, obviously we all know about this, but how amazingly dark it can go and it can completely pitch black to, obviously, this very lit background in the foreground. But it's about telling the story with the light. I tried, obviously in this shot here, I love it, there's a huge smile. But I even said to Rhonda, "Unlike the other time I photographed you, "we're gonna keep this real simple." Don't do too much 'cause I want you to see how just radically different we can make the light work. I've also tried in many respects, to keep this crop going for a lot of them. I showed you here a bigger, larger frame. Although I know we shot tighter ones as well mostly because I wanted to show you what the shadow would look like and how you can play with that. And the further away you have it, the shadow can become this long character on the ground, almost like a tail. It leads off. So we'll start wi...

th, which was the first one we did? I forget. Over here. That's right, sorry. Okay, so this is in the order they were at. Yep. Okay great. Sidelight, soft box light. And I normally, as I mentioned, have a grid on the soft box that I, actually literally tear half of it on and off. And let it hang. I remember one of my... The first things I ever did when I totally didn't realize kind of what I was doing. I was shooting my wife and I was using an umbrella. And I set it up and I hadn't clicked it shut properly. And so it closed. But I didn't realize. And she hadn't said anything. And I took the picture, and I was like, "Huh, wow, that's awesome, "look at it, it's great." And I looked and I was like, "How did that happen?" 'Cause I've shot with this light before, it never looked like that. And it had hot shot, the half opened umbrella. So there was this sort of mistake that taught me back then, breaking things down and kind of making them just like that, this sort of half opened umbrella. And now this, is now a light source that we'll actually use on set. Or we'll close it and crunch it. And that becomes our umbrella, not opened up like it's meant to be in the way it's advertised. But literally, just like that. And even this, the way this is hanging here, can affect the picture, as it soften areas and highlights others. So... And it's often like doing things like that. That's also with a soft box, and the reason why I'm saying that is because with a soft box, it's a similar way. Sometimes they don't stick properly, and they half hang off and you're like, of course, it may not be what you wanted, but I found through those sorts of mistakes or happenings, that these are great ways to light things. Where, by having the grid, you're getting this really nice sort of area and the softer light comes around the edge where there's no grid. And we added a little bounce. This is the pro Fresnel spot, which I use for this dramatic, kind of Hollywood style lighting, and it's almost like a hot light, and I've done major advertising campaigns with this, including some of the Pamela Roland images you saw were shot like this. This is the Octobank overhead that I use for ballet dancers and a lot of yoga, but I've also done all kinds of advertising campaigns and photoshoots with this too. It works really well when someone is in a seated position particularly, if they're not going to be moving like a dancer, and it's really gorgeous if someone is just-- almost in a sleeping position, like not lying down necessarily, but with head back, and-- and those sorts of scenarios do happen, I'm shooting a campaign and I want the model to be on the couch or on the sofa, and the head is back and it's more of a romantic feel. And they use lighting very similar to this in things like the Gap ad campaigns. It's very common to have that kind of over the head, even Calvin Klein One ad campaigns, where you see all the models are all hanging out like that, and the head's up and it's kind of dramatic, and the light evens out as it hits the ground. Then we were over here, and this was in our tunnel-- this was not in our tunnel of light, this is the two strip, thank you, sorry. This is the two strips of light in the background, and I mentioned how I started back in the day with hot lights, I would do that, I would put hot lights on either side, and you can totally see the hot lights real easy, and I recommend using them, because it's the easy way to hone where you like the lights, they're really cheap to use, really cheap to rent, and they have barn doors on them, which are equivalent of the grids. They create those great lights, and then the front light, you just back up the hot light, as far as you want, obviously in this situation we lit it with a strobe just to give it a little catch in the eyes, which you can't see with her smiling, but that's what we did that for. And just to kind of even it out, and there was a two-stop difference between the front and the back. And again, this is our tunnel that I was talking about, the lit background with trees on the background, which are open umbrella on each stand, I guess we only call them a tree when we have more than one head on it, but-- and it creates this gorgeous, kind of stark light. And you can see the story in each one of these, they're very very different, and here, our final light setup, that you just saw us do. Beautifully lit from the back, and I don't often use umbrellas for this particular light setup, I use soft boxes more so, but you can try it with anything, try it with beauty dishes, try it with Octobanks, and each one, they all have their own sort of flavor and feel to them, but umbrellas are, certainly with those socks, make this light not as sharp as you see in some of these other ones where it's like that. You can see it's a softer light here, creating that lovely dark shadow through the middle. And there we have six light setups, and I'm not sure which one I like more. I think I like them all for different reasons.

Class Description

“Think Big, Dream Bigger” - that’s the philosophy that internationally renowned photographer Nigel Barker has lived by his whole career. Join Nigel on CreativeLive as he shares how to make your dreams become reality.

Nigel will discuss his journey as a photographer and will teach through the moments that he learned from that ultimately led to his success. From developing your style, creating a brand, owning your confidence and going after and getting jobs, Nigel will help you become a successful photographer while still being yourself. In the class you’ll learn how to:

  • Create your brand by establishing who you are
  • Present yourself to the client so that they understand your style and abilities
  • Build a library of work for marketing your business
  • Use lighting to create emotion
  • Connect with your models and break the wall of posing

Be a fly on the wall as Nigel does a live shoot and shares his knowledge about equipment, environment, and how to work with models. And he’ll end the day with a live critique and discuss the best ways to use your images to present yourself to your clients and customers. By the end of this class, you’ll have the tools to set yourself up for success.


Michael Spatola

This is one of my favorite Creative Live classes so far. The storytelling and human interaction parts were my favorites! The ability for Nigel to get such amazing expressions in such a brief time shooting was amazing. Everything he demonstrated seemed almost effortless, and all without a shred of ego. Great class!

Margaret Lovell

Nigel is a wonderfully engaging instructor. I like that he walks his students through his photoshoots. The set ups. How to interact with the models. Even though there are a couple of genres I'm most active in, I appreciate that Nigel says that you can have different photographic interests, so long as you brand yourself properly. I like taking photos of lots of things, although my outdoor photos generate the most interest. I highly recommend all of Nigel's classes.

a Creativelive Student

Passion, personal, inspiring! Nigel, thanks for amazing class and a lot of great advices.