More Light Silver + WHITE | Transcription

Do you want more light? Well silver is greater than white; not only did that rhyme, I totally sound like a car sales person right there. Okay, I have another example situation for you and this time we’re shooting in a super, super bright area and I’d say it’s even brighter than the last shot we took, this was extremely bright out and we have our subject Jill.

Jill is a crossfit and just fitness goddess; she’s amazing. What I have her doing is, when we got to this beach, I saw this great rock that looked fantastic to kind of have her lean against and we had her lean against that and then again- always look at the light first- we’re going to talk about kind of our case studies in analysing light later on but I always put my subject into the scene and have them do what I want them to do first and then I start manipulating the light.

Now when I had her lean back against that rock I saw the sunlight kind of coming in, it creates a beautiful short light that came from the backside, it’s really the main light in this shot. I don’t want to do too much modification, this shot actually looks quite great and most people would probably take the shot and be like, “that looks fantastic, I don’t need to do anything, I’ll do the rest on post”, but when I saw that I thought there might be something that I could do.

I could use a little bit of light to fill in the shadows just so I had some highlights in there, just so I had a little bit of detail in there that I could work with a little better in post production but the problem is that we’re in such a bright scene that if I used white, I probably wouldn’t really be able to see it much and also because we’re shooting this kind of high contrast, edgy kind of beauty/fashion/fitness; a more contrasting light, a silver light would actually kind of benefit the style and the look that we’re going for anyway so it’s going to do two things for me, it’s going to give me more light and it’s going to give me that type of quality of light that would really benefit the shot as well.

So let’s go over the gear list, how do we shoot this shot? Well for this particular shot I used the Fotodiox, the 40 by 60 just because it’s easier to throw light into, it’s a little bit larger, again it’s 30 bucks. I also used a grid, now you could use a snoot for what I’m about to tell you but I used a grid. Let me tell you why; I didn’t worry about using the grid because I’m not worried about light hitting something behind the reflector and bouncing back into the scene; I’m not worried about that at all.

Based on my position to where Jill was, I’m going to give you an example of this. Let’s assume that you guys are my subject, you guys right now are Jill. I had the reflector off towards the side, almost at the same angle as Jill is okay. The reflector is basically over there, I need to throw my light over to that side, it needs to hit that and then go back to you the camera so if I angle my flash that way, even if I zoom in at 105, when I fire this shot, you guys are probably going to end up seeing that flash right? There’s a major problem there, I’m ending up getting direct flash onto you guys, onto Jill because I have to shoot at that angle and so it opens up the flash head to my subject and I don’t want that.

So what do I do is, in this situation we put the grid on not because we’re worried about a spill onto the background but because we’re worried about spill onto our subject. Now from here I can fire with the flash at the same place okay, but this time you guys aren’t going to see nearly as much of that light in camera and when I look at the two shots; one shot the camera is completely lit up the other shot the camera’s dark so we’re using the grid in this situation to control spill onto Jill, I want the light to be directional only not coming from the camera.

You can also use a snoot okay? A snoot is totally usable as well, I find it easier to carry a little bit less then a little bit more so I just stick to what works, in this case just the grid and if you have the MagMod, that’s my preferred system; is the MagMod. I’m also using our same 5 stop Indie filter right over the front where on an 85 ml lens so I just have a step down ring that just closes the filter size so I can put it right over that. I got a decent budget Indie filter just to get you started okay, this is just to play around with these techniques is the Tiffen 3 stop at 35 bucks.

A decent mid level 5 stop neutral density filter that’s good enough to start getting decent image quality out of it is the Hoya 18mm at 100 bucks and again a Lee, a Singh-Ray anything that you’re investing a couple of hundred bucks into, make sure you read the reveiws but Lee and Singh-Ray make fantastic Indie filters and they’re going to be around 300 bucks.

Okay so let’s take a look at the camera settings and I want to show you the difference between the shots. Our camera settings; we’re at 1/200th of a second at F2 ISO 200, again whenever you go on a scene like this, go aperture first, decide on aperture for composition purposes and for depth of field purposes then go to your shutter speed. I went to one- two hundredth of a second because I know that that’s the fastest my sync speed can go and I want to get the light down as much as possible then I dialed in my ISO based on the Indie filter so I had to actually bring this up to one- two hundredth of a second just because I had a 5 stop Indie filter on and I didn’t want to go a 3 stop and go in between, I just wanted to go up to ISO 200, it’s totally fine.

We’re bouncing off the silver at 1 to 1 and again we’re losing a little bit of light because we have the grid on so I could probably have bounced around one half to one quarter light if I wasn’t using the grid but with the grid on and with the way I’m bouncing I needed 1 to 1 power to get enough light.

So here’s the shot; this is the shot just as normal without any light whatsoever, this is just without the flash, same exact camera settings and so forth. Looks really nice; I find really no problems with this shot except I would end up spending a lot of time in post adding and dodging and burning to kind of bring up these shadows and to kind of do all that kind of stuff but if I had to I could but why not just get it right in-camera.

So here’s the same shot, that exact same shot with our silver modifier and you can see it basically being reflected into the glasses which creates like a really cool catch light just over on the glasses too, it kind of brings the glasses to life. We get this beautiful fill light everywhere, notice that we’re not overpowering that main light, that sun is still basically the main light in the shot, we’re just adding a fill light with the silver and it fills it very beautifully.

Now Jill, like I said she’s a Crossfit expert, she’s amazing, she does competitions and so forth. With anybody that does crossfit and competitions, often times they’re going to have a little bit of skin bruising because they have workout exercise accidents and so forth so she had a little bruising on the leg so the only thing I did with this is I wanted to do a little bit of touch up just to clean up the skin a little bit. So I took this … this is probably the only image in this entire series that I took into Photoshop and I just basically cleaned it up a little bit so we had a little bit less of the bruising and what not but look at this shot and compare that to this one.

Now this is that first shot right here but what I did with this shot is I brightened it up in post. I brightened it up in post so that we had a little bit bright of an image, we had a little bit more fill in the shadows and so forth. Compare the quality of these two shots side by side; pretty massive difference right? On this side we have this beautiful highlight and having the fill light there allows me to do dodging and burning in Photoshop to create an even better, kind of highlight along that edge of leg, it looks fantastic, it looks beautiful, it looks natural. We get a nice catch light in the eyes and in the glasses, we get beautiful fill everywhere, we kind of soften the shadows over here, we keep the background nice and rich as opposed to over exposed on the right side; overall it just looks like it’s a better and more refined image, it has better production value and that’s what we’re trying to get to.

Here we’re not overpowering light, we’re not doing anything, we’re just doing a subtle bit of fill light from our on-camera flash into a silver balance so hopefully this gives you a couple of new ideas as far as yeah you can use your silver when you need a lot of light but it doesn’t necessarily need to be a lot of light to overpower anything, it could be a lot of light because you just want a lot of fill for a scene that’s extremely bright okay? And it’s going to give you a nicer overall look. Now one key thing to remember that I want you guys to think about; the way that I’m filling light is directional and it goes into the shadow areas and it’s coming from a similar direction as the sun which means that it kind of -in practice- it kind of looks like that light is just wrapping around it a little more.

If I would have bounced that fill off into the right side, if I would have bounced it off to this side, it wouldn’t have looked good; it would have looked like it wasn’t very natural, it would have looked like we added flash and just kind of opened it up and it’d end up losing that shadow definition because we had a fill in the shadows too much. So I’m following the direction of light or at least getting close to the direction of light that’s existing and bouncing fill from that so we just get more of that light wrap, we still retain the shadows.

So my primary tips; we’re using the 5 stop ND filter for sync speed because I don’t want to compromise image quality by raising up my ISO and raising up the shutter speed and I don’t want to get to a point where I have to basically run into my shutter speed limitation, I don’t want to use high speed sync.

Number two; high speed sync can be used but like I said you’re going to run into the ISO and shutter speed limitation because where we are right now, we’re shooting the shot at F2 ISO 200. That means if I were to take off the 5 stop, that would get me at 400 shutter speed, 800 that’s two stops, 1600 is three stops, 3200 is four stops; I would be around 60, 400 shutters … I don’t even know if that’s a shutter speed but 1/6000th of a second at this exposure so again I’m right at the limitation already of the shutter speed, I have maybe a third stop left so I don’t want to deal with that, I’m just going to use an Indie filter.

Three; snoots can be used to throw light longer distances but again they can also create a tighter pattern than grids but it gets difficult guys and you’ll find that the techniques that we’re teaching here, these are techniques that I use on professional shoots, that I use on any type of shoot, these have the bounce techniques. I don’t want to teach you things that are too difficult to put in practice, they’re not practical basically okay. If you’re throwing a snoot thirty feet into a reflector, you might as well just have a off-camera flash where the reflector is and just do that because it’s much, much easier but throwing it five, ten feet, that’s totally doable; it’s very practical and reasonable to do that quickly on a shoot.

Number four; place the light on what you want featured and basically that whole thing goes back to well what do you want to feature here? Do you want to feature the model, the clothing, the expression, what do you want to feature? For this shot I kind of wanted to open up her legs, her core and her face so we kind of used that large reflector so we had a little more surface area and we kind of aimed it over the entire body.

CHAPTER GETTING OVER THE FEAR, HYPE, & MYTHS

CHAPTER 2: THE BASICS OF FLASH

CHAPTER 3 UNDERSTANDING LIGHT

CHAPTER 4: ON-CAMERA FLASH GEAR BASICS

Chapter 5: DIRECT FLASH DONE RIGHT

Chapter 6: STUDIO LIGHT? JUST BOUNCE IT!

Chapter 7: MORE LIGHTS, REFINEMENT, & CREATIVITY

Chapter 8: CASE STUDIES

Chapter 9: BONUS CHAPTERS

Total Course Run Time: 8H 17M 4S