Silver Bounce | Transcription

From a V-Flat we are now moving into a silver bounce. In just looking at this modifier, what kind of light quality can we predict from this kind of modifier? We know that it’s going to be fairly large in relation to the distance from the subject, so if we have it close it’s large, if we have it further away it’s going to be smaller which is going to determine whether it’s soft or whether it’s hard. One thing that we know for certain is that this is going to create a more specular light, a more contrasty with brighter highlights and darker shadows than a white or a matte surface because this is reflective, it’s silver, which is going to be fantastic for certain types of effects or when we simply need a stronger and more powerful light. This will send back more light than a white and that light that is sends back is going to be more specular.

Let’s show you exactly the type of situations that are awesome to use a silver in. The first situation is fitness, we did a set of fitness shots, one with Brandon, we did another set with Jeremiah and Levi, which we’ll be showing you later on. For those type of shots we want that harder edge, we want a more defined look and you are going to see as we go and shape that light it works incredibly well with fitness because you are trying to create and really exaggerate muscle definition. That edge, that hard look is fantastic when you are going for a very dramatic type shot.

Scene number two is the silver is fantastic for an outdoor scene like this where when we are shooting Yoko, we are trying to get color in the sky, we are trying to make the sky underexposed a little bit so we have detail there. Otherwise, if we expose for just skin, everything blows out and we lose that. When we simply need to create a lot of light in situations like where we are outdoors and we need to overpower the sun a little bit, that’s where a silver is again going to come in handy.

Now, in the last video we were basically bouncing our flash directly into a large V-flat. For that you are going to control basically the size of how much light goes into that V-Flat with simply your zoom because generally you are going to be close to that V-Flat. If I want to use the entire V-Flat ,I would simply just zoom out to like say 24mm and that way the flash is going to open up wide and hit the entire V-Flat and then go back onto the subject. If I wanted to use less of that V-Flat, then I would end up zooming in to, say, 105mm or whatever amount in between that you find appropriate. Once again, you are using that little testing button on your camera to give you a modeling light to see where that light is hitting, on the reflector as well on your model.

What if now we are bouncing off of smaller surfaces and now I need to control my light just a little bit more? Remember in the previous chapter, when we wanted to pin the light, when we wanted to focus the light on one area, what do we use? We use either a grid or a snoot. Generally in this type of tutorial, with bouncing off of on camera flash off of a reflector, we are not going to bounce so far that we would need a snoot. If you are bouncing that far, it becomes very difficult to use this as a technique. Usually our bounce is at most 5-10 feet away from the camera. For that we can use simply a grid.

If I want to prevent light from spilling and from hitting other things in my background. For example, if I had the silver right here but then there is a white wall behind it but I don’t want to use that white wall, I don’t want any light hitting that, I put a grid on. I’d use my zoom, put the grid on and now my light becomes very focused on whatever area that I’m shooting in. Even from the camera when you guys look at this, you probably aren’t seeing nearly as much light spilling towards you as you were just a minute ago when I didn’t have the grid on. Now we are using grids and we are using snoots to control light direction into the types of bounces, the types of modifiers that we are using.

With the gear list, any one of these is totally fine. Again, you don’t need to have all this gear, just have something from there. We use both Westcott and the Fotodiox. The Westcott 5-in-1 40 inch version is going to be 40 bucks. The Fotodiox, 40 by 60 5-in-1 is 30 and the Fotodiox 48 by 72 5-in-1 is 60. Again, if you buy it with the stand it’s like 80 bucks and it comes with a reflector too so it’s a good deal if you get it if you need a stand. If not, you can go with either or. I like to have both depending on the use and everything they modify a little bit differently so they are nice and they are cheap. Reflectors are so cheap and you can always use them, they are great.

With the ND Filter, for this bottom shot because we are shooting outdoors and it’s noon day sun and we are shooting at a fairly low aperture. We are actually using the 24mm prime for the bottom shots. We are shooting at F1.4. if we didn’t have this on then we’d be somewhere around 1/4000 of a second to get the background dark enough, which means that we have to use high speed sync, which means that I’m going to have to use ISO in conjunction with my shutter speed, which means I’m going to reduce image quality, color, detail and I’m going to run into that shutter speed limit within one stop because my camera can only go up to 1/8000 of a second.

Again, we are using a 5-Stop Neutral Density Filter. A 5-Stop is just that ideal amount of cutting down to be able to shoot outdoors and midday sun at low apertures. You don’t need to go up to 10-Stop. A 10-Stop is more for special effects, for basically doing shutter drags in the middle of the day. 5-Stop is just right for syncing.

When it comes to the Neutral Density Filter, again our favorite and the ones that we use are the Singh-Ray filters, they have fantastic quality but don’t get me wrong, there is a lot of great quality filters at different price points. A good budget filter at 82mm is the 3-Stop Tiffen. It’s 35 bucks and at least it will get you practicing this technique so it’s a decent filter. A great mid-level filter for a 5-Stop filter at 82mm is the Hoya. The Hoya 5-Stop, it’s about 100 bucks.

Again, another good brand of filters which sometimes you need to get drop in inserts for them is Lee filters, Lee filters are fantastic. Singh-Ray is fantastic for these screw on filters and so forth. What I would avoid getting is a variable ND Filter. Variable ND Filters are basically ND Filters that allow you to adjust from one stop to 8 stops. They use 2 pieces of glass and because of it, even the nicest variable ND Filter is going to reduce image quality quite a bit because you are going through now two layers of glass instead of just one. Keep it simple, just get a 5-Stop ND filter. Based on your budget you can choose what you want to invest in. If you can and you know it’s going to be something that you use a lot I would say just jump to the Singh-Ray, invest in that. You’ll use it forever.

By the way, just get the 82mm filter because you can always get step down rings. Step down rings are super cheap, they’ll allow you to adapt this to smaller lenses basically. A step down ring rather than having multiple filters for different lens sizes just get one 82 and then you are good to go.

Let’s go ahead and move into this first little shot right here. On the top left shot, this is our ambient light shot. This is on a 24-70, this same lens right here, the 24-70 Mark II. We are at 70mm at 1/100 of a second, F2.8 and ISO 3200. This is no flash ambient light only. Again, look at the muscle definition. It’s not really showing all that well. Everything looks very flat, the light quality is from the same video lights, we are not getting good detail, not good color, everything.

Number 2, this looks straight up like a mugshot. It looks like Brandon is going to prison and we have to get a shot with him before he goes behind bars. This is the same 24-70 at 1/200 of a second F2.8 and ISO 200. This time we are using direct flash at TTL. If you are not using TTL, if you are on manual with direct flash at this distance it’s probably around 132nd to 164th power because it’s direct flash and we are ISO 200 and 2.8 we don’t really need a lot of light there.

Next we have our top right shot. This is that first super dramatic bounce shot and this is split lit right down the center to create a very dramatic image. We get good muscle definition. You can see how we have details on those veins and we see more abs and we see that definition in the chest and the core. This is with a silver bounce. We are 70mm on 24-70, same set up, 1/200 of a second f/2.8 ISO 200, this time all we did was turn this into the bounce where you can either run a TTL or because we are bouncing we are at around 1/8 to 1/16 power.

You are losing light with that bounce which you can see from this direct light where we are at 132nd to 164th. We are losing around 2 stops of light even more depending on where the bounce is placed in relation to the subject but we have a much better quality image right here. We have an image that actually looks great, it looks dramatic and later on we are going to show you how to fill other sides so you get really cool shots where it looks like there’s 2 or 3 light set-ups. This is just a single one light set-up, the one we are starting out with.

This bottom shot. We are on the 24mm prime. The 24m prime is an interesting lens because it creates a look that’s very distinct because you can basically shoot wide at 1.4 but you can get a very similar look to this with a 2470 with whatever at 24mm at say f/2.8. Sigma supposedly has a 2470 coming out at f/2 which I’m so excited because Sigma comes out with fantastic stuff. It’s going to be a new art lens and they are generally much less expensive than some of the other brand name lenses. The bottom left one is the 1/200 of a second at f/1.4 ISO 50 with the 5 stop neutral density filter which is why we are at 1.4, we are at ISO 50 and we can keep it at 1/200 of a second.

This is the shot that I took based on where I want my ambient light exposure to be but when you look at it you are like, oh my God, she is completely pitch black. There is no detail there. I made a little adjustment. I took her up about 5 stops. I went to 1/200 of a second at f/1.4 and ISO 400 so we went from ISO 50 to 100, 200 and then 400. That’s actually 3 stops. Then I think we actually brightened this up a little bit and post as well. We did a little of post brightening too to get it exposed correctly for her skin. We are probably around 4 stops above where we are at here. 3 to 4 stops.

At that point, all of the background, you can see all the detail in the sky and everything is gone. The richness in this brush, that rich gold tone is gone. The highlights are blown. We just see a little bit of gold around the outsides. This shot is okay, that’s why I have a check mark next to this. This one is x’d out. These are x’d out because these just don’t look good but this shot is actually okay. If what you want is that natural light look and you want the background to be blown out and stuff, that’s a style in and of itself. That’s totally acceptable.

If I want that more dramatic look, I simply bring my exposure back to the first image. We go back to the first image where we are at 1/200 of a second f/1.4 ISO 50 with our 5-Stop Neutral Density Filter. I power up to full power on my flash. Then I’m simply bouncing directly into a silver that’s off to camera left and that goes directly to her face. Again, depending on the distance of that silver, you may choose to use a snoot or you may simply leave it bearable. Generally for this type of a shot I don’t need to use a grid because I’m not too worried about it splashing anywhere else. It can hit other areas and it’s not going to come back and interfere with my shot whereas if I’m indoors in my studio I don’t want it to bounce anywhere but my light modifiers because otherwise it’s going to affect my shot.

What I would probably do is just zoom into 105mm on this, go one over one, bounce right into that reflector, aim the reflector right into her and we get this shot right here. We have this beautiful dramatic looking shot where we have all the colors in the background, we haven’t had anything blown out except for the sun at the very top of the frame which looks very nice and we get our beautiful model Yoko there. From there we took a few different shots and all of them i really dug. We did some sitting, some standing and so forth and we’ll talk about those more later on.

Tip number 1 is to use that silver for a stronger and more specular light as well as a harder edge so when you need it for stylistic purposes or when you need it for simply more light. This is stylistic, this is just because we need lots of lights. Number 2, the larger the reflector the more light you have and the easier it is to bounce. For example, we talked about using the Westcott 40 inch 5-in-1. The Fotodiox is 40 by 60 which when held in that tall portrait aspect ratio type vertically basically, it gives you a little bit more room to work with which means if you can catch more light from the flash it’s also reflecting a little more light.

Number 3 when indoors aim your reflector at the light via the flash test button which we covered and number 4 when outdoors, aim your reflector at the light by imagining it’s a mirror. Again, with the V-Flat these things were very simple, we didn’t have to worry about that and that’s why we started with a V-Flat. When you are with a reflector it gets a little bit difficult to put those things into place. Once you get used to it it’s actually pretty simple but when you put that reflector in place, the easiest thing to remember is let’s say, your assistant is holding the reflector and the model is right there in front of you and the reflector is off to the side. All you need to remember is to imagine the reflector is a mirror and you look towards the reflector and if you can imagine seeing the reflection of that person in this mirror then it’s angled correctly.

If you look at the reflector and the reflector is pointing straight at you, if that was a mirror then all you would see is yourself so when you bounce into that it’s just going to come straight back at you. If it’s pointed away and you look at the reflector and it’s off to the side then you know it’s not getting the model. That’s the easiest way to remember. Imagine it’s a mirror and look straight through that to see, can you see the model basically on that angle?

You’ll get very used to this once you do it a couple of times so just give it a try. That’s it for this silver bounce video. Remember in general, a silver bounce is fantastic when you want a more contrasty and specular type of light for stylistic purposes or when you simply just need more light in general.

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