Restaurant lighting color problem

Discussion in 'The Professional Gallery' started by montag451, Mar 22, 2007.

  1. montag451

    montag451 TPF Noob!

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    Hey all, I'm going to be shooting a bridal shower in a small Italian restaurant on sunday. My Problem is one of lighting color.
    The room is red brick, with Large wall sized windows at the front (natural light, mid day, facing west) it has wood blinds that might color the light slightly wormer but not much. The room is lit by 4 ceiling fans with those yellowish glass domes over the bulbs. So where talking warm room light, mixed with cool daylight from the Windows. In addition, the place is on the dark side. so i'll need to use my 430ex strobe. Oh yea, the ceiling is made of shinny aluminum panels. about 10 feet over head.

    I won't be able to gel the rooms lights but, i can gel my strobe.
    Should I?
    If is do gel the strobe for tungsten to match the room I'm worried that the window will go blue and, i want to match the warm mood of the Party.

    I have very little equipment. A Rebel XT, canon 28-135 IS f/3.5-5.6 lens, a 18-55 kit lens, a 55mm f/1.8, and a 430ex Accessory flash. When shooting portraits i usefully use a dome type defuser i made that i mount atop the flash pointed straight up.

    My plane as of now is not to gel the strobe. Use my defuser (witch is made of ziploc containers) opened at the top and bounce the light off the ceiling. Just to help stop the motion and add some fill to the faces. So i'll set it to 1/8th or 1/4th power somewhere around there. I'm also considering using my 18-55 f/3.5-5.6 kit lens since it's a bit wider and will allow a lower shutter speed. Though i like my 28-135 better b/c it's and IS lens and sharper then the kit lens.

    The result in theory should be that the people in the foreground will be lit by the flash witch is where i'll set my white bal. the mid ground (room) will be cast yellowish, and if the windows are in the background that will be white.
    It sounds nice in my head, but i don't know. maybe i should gel the strobe for the room and ignore the blue window the window.

    Please, Please help me, sniff sniff, :cry:
    Thanks -Scott

    In case you where wondering, yes i will be the only man in the room a wedding crazed women.

    Here are a few shots from the place. they where taking with a 55mm 1.8 with no flash. a table was used for support.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  2. EOS_JD

    EOS_JD TPF Noob!

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    Not sure I fully understand your problem but have tried a custom white balance?
     
  3. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Welcome to the forum.

    As you know, this is a tough shooting situation. It seems to me that you are aware of the possible problems, which makes me think that you will be OK. My first though is to just convert the shots to black & white in post processing, what way you don't have to worry about the color shifts.

    I also get the feeling that the room lights aren't all that bright, so may not be too much of a problem, especially if you keep the shutter speed up.

    That sound like it will look nice, although if you are bouncing the flash off the ceiling, it may spread out all over the room, taking away from the ambiance of the background. Maybe you could use a more direct flash and diffuse it while also dialing the FEC down a stop or two.
     
  4. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    The problem is that there are different light temps coming in...if you custom set the WB for one, the other areas will be off. If you set a custom WB with a combination of the lights (or use the auto), it might end up that the setting doesn't match any of the lights and they are all off...although if they are not too far off, this may be the best solution.
     
  5. JonR

    JonR TPF Noob!

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    If you'd like to spend about 6 hours in post pro, shoot in raw and process one JPEG for the inside light and one for the outside. Then merge them in photoshop.

    This will take hours though, I'd be tempted to only do this on killer colour shots and then b&W the others or use the other methods talked about above. I'd gel for the strongest colour. If it's going to be late afternoon eve, that's probably the inside. If it's midday it might well be the outside.

    If the outside light is really strong, ask if they can sit near the windows an, if it doesn't affect anyone else, ask the restaurant manager if the can turn the lights off or dim them. Worth a try anyone, just don't **** anyone off too much!

    HTH
     
  6. montag451

    montag451 TPF Noob!

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    Thanks so much for the advice.
    Big Mike you might have a point about the Flash. i made a foam bounce card sort of thing, i might try that. Make it more directional.

    Thanks for the tip
    Thats probably more work then I'm looking for with this shoot.
    though it it comes to that, i'll keep it in mind as a backup
    Since it's during the day the lights in the place might be low. I think i will try white bal for the daylight mixed with flash. the room might not have very much effect at all.

    Thanks a lot guys
     
  7. THORHAMMER

    THORHAMMER TPF Noob!

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    If there is only like 5 or 6 fan lights, I would buy some of those natural light halogens and screw them in. there like 8 bucks apiece, bill it to them..
    its a lot easier to match the window light that way and everything will come out perfect, plus youll get a better exposure form the white lights being better for skin tones. just a thought... or explain to them ahead of time that nothing will match, take test shots and show them ahead of time, then they will be easy to allow you to switch lights...

    just a thought... i havent done a lot of those myself
     
  8. dgs

    dgs TPF Noob!

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    I had a similar nightmare but it wasn't that bad to fix once I stopped making it complicated.

    http://public.fotki.com/BigHatPix/faces/dsc00583b.html

    The problem was that the subject's face was lit by the indoor flourescents and the dominate light came from the large plate glass windows behind. WB on the subject's shirt put the rest of the frame a truly ghastly blue.

    If I'm remembering correctly, I just duplicated a layer and then adjusted the base layer for the white shirt and skin tone. The upper layer was balanced for daylight and then had some gaussian blur thrown at it. Then it's just a matter of selectively erasing the upper layer allowing the subject to come through. At least I think that's what I did <grin> It's been a while.

    I'm sure not the best solution . . .I'm no pro at this. But I'm not displeased by the result and time invested is measured in minutes, not hours.
     

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