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Darkness in an Urban Environment: Managing Light on the Streets

with Joe McNally

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  •   Trailer

  •   01 Managing Light on The Streets at Night

    04:20

Class duration: 1h 30m

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About The Class

Using flash for night portraits

In this exclusive class, join legend Joe McNally, on the streets of New York to see how to bring light to one of the busiest and most dynamic backgrounds. He'll walk through how to prep your gear, scout for locations, direct your models, and incorporate flash to make your subject stand out on the city streets. He'll discuss how to set your exposure and plan your shot to achieve the "bokeh" look of the city glow behind your model. Learn tips for planning your shoot so you're within the city regulations as well as techniques to help work through any troubles you may have while on location. Gain the confidence and know-how to photograph your subjects with flash in what can seem like an impossible environment.

Topics Covered


Lesson Plan

  1. 01

    Managing Light on The Streets at Night

    04:20
  2. 02

    Camera and Lighting Gear on Location

    11:42
  3. 03

    Working with Models: Etiquette and Considerations

    01:44
  4. 04

    Releases and Permit Basics

    02:41
  5. 05

    Pre-Shoot and Scouting

    19:45
  6. 06

    Shoot: Male Model with Dusk City Traffic Background

    15:16
  7. 07

    Shoot: From One Light to Three Light Setups

    24:44
  8. 08

    Capturing Motion with City Lights

    06:48
  9. 09

    Wrap Up

    03:11

Meet Your Expert

Joe McNally

Joe McNally is an internationally acclaimed photographer whose career has spanned more than 30 years and included assignments in over 60 countries. McNally is often described as a generalist because of his ability to execute a wide range of ... read more

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80% of students recommend this class.
See what some of them have to say.

  • Janis Shetley

    Janis Shetley

    April 2018

    This behind the scenes class is great for those that already have a solid understanding of how to use their flash off camera. I really learned a lot watching Joe work with the models, seeing where he put the flashes, where he stood, how he framed the shots, how he had the models move - especially in the "movement" segment. The three light segment was also interesting - I would have never tried putting the reflector on the pavement with a flash firing into it - so cool. If you need detailed instructions on using your flash and camera - this is not the class for you. If you want ideas on how to get the most out of your flashes on the street - this is it. Great class. Plus Joe is just a great teacher and fun to listen to for 90 minutes!

  • Benjamin Lehman

    Benjamin Lehman

    March 2019

    One of Joe's most magnificent qualities is his ability to be *real* while teaching a class: Is everything going haywire, or are there troublesome problems that are challenging to overcome? Joe doesn't shy away letting you, the student, realize that even the pros have to deal with constant, unexpected problems. His other strength is showing you how to persevere and overcome those hurdles; and one of those biggest hurdles all photographers run up against time and time again - Light! Joe will go down in modern history as the father of small (and large) flash photography. He's not afraid to use the entire US output of flash watt seconds on a single photo, but he's also quick to remind us that flash is a tool, and not a crutch. This was a great course for those photographers who want some experience out on the street before ever leaving their house. As you grow and learn more about your camera and what it means to be a photographer, you can always come back to a class like this and learn new things that may have seemed alien to you the first go-around.

  • fbuser 4d17acbc

    fbuser 4d17acbc

    January 2018

    I like the class. It is a good primer for getting an idea of some of the things that you need to think about when you are doing a night shoot. This is a quicky class Joe just touches on a bunch of stuff so you don't get a lot meat and potatoes on this class, but I found it helpful. Worth the cost.

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