Single OCF light source picture thread

Discussion in 'Lighting and Hardware' started by Village Idiot, Oct 5, 2011.

  1. Village Idiot
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    Village Idiot Well-Known Member

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    If you got it, post it up. Providing info of light type, positioning, and modifiers kicks ass too.

    [​IMG]

    One 580EX II with shoot through umbrella held by Voice Activated Lightstand (VAL) camera left.
  2. 2WheelPhoto
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    2WheelPhoto New Member

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    I'll contribute-

    Last night, shoot-through umbrella/pocketwizard/camera right.

    [​IMG]
  3. bazooka
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    bazooka New Member

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    [​IMG]

    Two microwaved cd's, a single tungsten clamp-on shop light in my darkened bathroom. Not strobe, but you didn't specify so.... :)
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  4. Village Idiot
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    Village Idiot Well-Known Member

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    OCF = Off camera flash. But, we can let it slide since your hummingbird shot is the tits.
  5. 2WheelPhoto
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    2WheelPhoto New Member

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    How long did you nuke the CDs for that effect?
  6. Derrel
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    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    [​IMG]

    This photo needs to be seen in its "original" size, for the correct color profile to come through, since when seen at reduced size, it defaults to some oddball color profile and the colors look all washed out and pale.

    This is a single Speedotron Brown Line M11 light unit fired through a Lastolite brand 40 inch Umbrella Box enclosed umbrella which I positioned to deliver some catchlighting in the eyes and a fairly broad shadow on the off side. There is 'some' hint of fill from a 4x6 foot white reflective LightForm panel on a homemade rolling stand, but the amount of fill-in is very minimal because the reflector is at least five feet away from the subject. The shadowed side of the face maintains nice dimensional clues which were lost when I moved the reflector closer,to approximately three feet off to the side. I didn't like the shots I made later, when the reflector was moved closer, to three feet. The Canon "flash" white balance was used,and it's a good match for this umbrella and uncoated flashtube. This image is exactly As-Shot using baseline Auto RAW convesion in ACR with just USM and re-sizing for the web. In this shot,the umbrella is lighting the paper just a tiny bit; I shot this on the short axis of my garage,and didn't use a backlight: I wish I would have used a light to make the backdrop whiter,or shot with the backdrop farther away from the umbrella for at least a medium gray,or darker, backdrop color in the final image. Here's the URL for this umbrella Lastolite Umbrella Box with 8MM Shaft - 40" LL LU3226 B&H
  7. bazooka
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    bazooka New Member

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    GAH!!! Thinking fail. Oh well, it could have been a flash!! :D

    The cd's only take about 5 seconds to cook the lines in. Once it 'flashes', it's done.
  8. 2WheelPhoto
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    2WheelPhoto New Member

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    ^^^^that umbrella may be the answer to my question of how do i get softer light without hassling with putting a softbox together everytime I get somewhere to shoot but still be softer than a bare umbrella? Derrel does the light fall off super-fast like a shoot-through umbrella? is there anything i need to mount a SB-600 with it, other than universal adapters i already have that hold a flash and umbrella on a light stand?
  9. Robin Usagani
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    Robin Usagani Well-Known Member

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    Single speedlite, camera left on a monopod held by model's husband. Bare flash.

    [​IMG]
  10. D-B-J
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    D-B-J Well-Known Member

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    [​IMG]


    Setup like this:

    [​IMG]
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  11. D-B-J
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    D-B-J Well-Known Member

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    [​IMG]


    Setup like this:

    [​IMG]
  12. 2WheelPhoto
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    2WheelPhoto New Member

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    Nice!
  13. Village Idiot
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    Village Idiot Well-Known Member

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    Fall off isn't a result of the modifier. It's the distance the light source is from the modifier.

    Zack Arias has the best illustrated example of this I've ever seen:
    I've moved the blog –> zackarias.com/blog » White Seamless Tutorial :: Part 3 :: From White To Black.
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  14. bruce282
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    bruce282 New Member

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    Don't tell he didn't trust you with his wife Schwettylens. :lol:

    Nice shot.

    Bruce
  15. 2WheelPhoto
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    2WheelPhoto New Member

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    Thanks for the information and link, I'll study it. I'm brand new to OCF and it just seems when i take two umbrellas out, my shoot through and the regular one with the black backing on and same settings same flash, the shoot through is significantly less light for me (unless I about move it against the subject). I haven't made as far as the studio and advanced studio lighting courses at school yet.
  16. Derrel
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    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    As Village Idiot pointed out, fall-off is more about the distance between the light, and the subject, than it is about the light itself. HOWEVER, comparing different light modifiers, one against the other, and there are differences in how different lights cast their light. If you want a dark, shadowed side, you can pull the light in really close to the subject, and the "bright side" will be pretty bright, and the shadowed side will be quite dark, by comparison with the lightness of the light side of a subject. Using a large and effective reflector on the shadowed side allows the photographer to bounce light back, and into the shadows, to modify the ratio of dark-to-light. The key is using a reflector that is atually A) large enough to DO something and B)using a reflector that is EFFECTIVE.

    Shoot-through umbrellas come in different sizes, and different fabrics, and they perform differently with different flash units fitted to them , as well as with "how" they are used. If you take a Nikon Sb 800 and choke it wayyyyyy up on the umbrella shaft and use a 45 inch shoot-through, only the CENTRAL part of the umbrella will be lighted, and the edges will have very,very rapid fall-off. If you back the umbrella off toward the end of the shaft and set the zoom head to 35mm, you can "fill" the umbrella, and get an entirely different effect, which is a broader "swath of light" that exits the umbrella, with a more-even amount of light between the center of the beam and the edges.

    Shoot-through umbrellas vary, a LOT; On some, you'll get 45% of the light going through the umbrella, and 55% of the light reflecting backward, where it bounces all over the shooting area. This is not good,or bad, but just the way it is. A black-backed reflecting umbrella will almost always direct a higher amount of light toward the subject than a shoot-through umbrella will. The reflecting umbrella has a higher efficiency,and it sends the light basically, for the most part, in only one direction, and not all over the room.

    The Lastolite Umbrella Box lights MORE like a softbox than a traditional umbrella does, because of the way it works. The flash is aimed into the umbrella, which has soft, solid white fabric inside, almost a plastic-like fabric, covered on the outside by a 100% light-proof black coating, also kind of "plastic-like", not just woven fabric, but a sort of "coated" white fabric and a "coated" black exterior. The light is scrambled inside the umbrella, and then goes through the white nylon front face. This design makes the "distance" around double, or more, than what one would get with a shoot-through. The Umbrella Box takes the scrambled, diffused light from the first bounce, and then diffuses it additionally when the light goes through the front cover: to me, this is called "double-diffusion". It is the same process as adding a diffuser to a light, and then firing it through a scrim--it makes the light even softer. The Lastolite Umbrella Box and the Photek Softlighter that Annie Liebovitz relies upon are almost the same thing in how they scramble the light, and then diffuse it AGAIN, through a front fabric, much the way a softbox fires through an internal diffusing baffle, and then through a front white nylon fabric.

    There is a second type of umbrella, which Zack Arias shows in one of his tutorials: it is the kind sometimes called a "brolly box", and is typically nothing more than a shoot-through umbrella with a black backing...it gives an ENTIRELY DIFFERENT type of light because it works very differently. Take a look at Zack's illustrations here, showing a shoot-through umbrella, and a softbox: I've moved the blog –> zackarias.com/blog » Shoot Through Umbrella vs. Softbox

    One of the most-important differences between 1) a shoot-through umbrella and a softbox, or 2) a Lastolite Umbrella Box or a Photek Softlighter and 3) a softbox is the degree of specularity the lights have. Shoot-through umbrellas are often very brightly lit-up where the flash blast through the umbrella fabric, and they often impart a sickly, disgusting, cheesy look to human foreheads and faces...lots of specular "sheen and shine"...which can make pictures shown really small and on the web or in newspapers look visually "exciting". Lots of punch, and sharp delineation of facial features. Softboxes and the Lastolite and Photek double-diffusion umbrellas have less specularity on human skin, when used for higher-resolution portraiture that is going to be printed, bigger, and seen, bigger than on the web on on newsprint screened at under 120 dots per inch...

    To me, the Lastolite Umbrella Box is the perfect umbrella for people...the "quality" of the light is different from either a shoot-through, or a reflecting umbrella. It is a double-diffusion, enclosed, rounded light. The Photek Sotlighter has even more ribs, and is even more-rounded. At "normal" studio distances, the 40 inch Lastolite Umbrella Box delivers a quality of light that I like. it is softer, with less specularity, and lower fall-off, than with a traditional reflecting umbrella. They cost almost $80 a pop. They are not $19 Chinese cheapies...
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  17. Village Idiot
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    Village Idiot Well-Known Member

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    You'll lose more light with the shoot through as you're shooting through an object and not bouncing it off of a reflective surface. You'll have to turn the power up to compensate but if you have the shoot through at the same distance as the reflective and have the subject at the same f stop, the fall off should theoretically be the same. The farther you move the light source from the subject, the less falloff there should be, you'll just have to have more power to compensate for it. Like with Zack's photo, if you were shooting a group with one light source and wanted them all as evenly lit as possible, you would pull the light farther away so that the falloff is as close to nil as possible and they're all lit within a stop fo each other. If you moved the light source right up against them, there would be massive falloff.

    The difference between the shoot through and the reflective is that the shoot through can be put closer to the subject and is a bigger light source, acting as a softer light. The reflective can't but put as close and as a smaller source, the light will be harder. It'll still be much softer than a bare flash head, but it'll be a bit harder than a shoot through. Hard is not bad though. A lot of photographers from their first experiences gather the notion that hard is bad because they're working with lighting out of their control. Hard is definitely not bad though, it's just not soft and it's a different type of light. Use your imagination and your tools to get the lighting you want.
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  18. Derrel
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    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    That statement from Village Idiot summarizes the way the Inverse Square Law applies to photographic lighting. For anybody who wants to learn perhaps the single most-critical aspect of studio lighting, they need to fully understand that statement that V-I just made.
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  19. Robin Usagani
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    Robin Usagani Well-Known Member

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    More posting less talking. I thought this was a thread to post pics?
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  20. 2WheelPhoto
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    2WheelPhoto New Member

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    Schwetty I apologize. Guys thank you very much for the extremely helpful info and links.

    Ok another on a lighter note - my girlfriend tiling my house. I couldn't help but sneak a pic of her as she had the shop light cam left in the front yard.

    [​IMG]
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2011

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