Success with a black background

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by bigazonk, Oct 9, 2009.

  1. bigazonk

    bigazonk TPF Noob!

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  2. Bevel Heaven

    Bevel Heaven TPF Noob!

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    well there are a bunch of ery different photos on that page, the only common link I can see is they are all back lit somehow. Either by setting sun, the light a the end of the tunnel etc.

    The back light defines and helps the forground image [the boy] stand out. I prefer the ones where some flash was also used.

    If you have just a black background, set an off camera flash behind and use your on camera as a fill

    plenty on info out there for you to read, google The Strobist for lots of info.
     
  3. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    You'll have to have your son at least 10 feet from any background and the image you referenced had the flash camera right, not on the hot shoe.

    Remember that with flash the shutter speed you select will determine the density of the background and the aperture you use willl determine the flash exposure on your son.
     
  4. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    This type of shot has recently become commonly called "overpowering daylight" or "overpowering ambient"; the two shots of the boy wearing the green #8 football jersey typify this popular look. The shot of the boy at OU's Owens Field was done near twilight, so it's super-easy to overpower the prevailing ambient light at that time of the day, since there is not much daylight left.

    Doing this type of shot is pretty easy if the ambient light level is low. Use a flash unit, preferably with an umbrella or soft box. The flash will be off-camera and triggered by a PC cord, or thru wireless triggering of one type of another. The softbox can be a small one, like a 13x9 inch model, or whatever you have. The flash is positioned off-camera, and the lens f/stop is appropriate to the flash-to-subject distance, like f/8 at eight feet let's say with a spedlight flash at full power in a small softbox at an IO setting of 200 to 400.

    The shutter speed is set relatively fast, so that not much daylight gets in. The faster the shutter speed, the darker the background will be rendered. A few specific cameras, like the Nikon D40, can synchronize flash at up to 1/8000 second when the flash is off-camera and triggered via remote or via PC synch cord, allowing one to make these types of dark-background shots
    even in the middle of the day.
     
  5. Mike_E

    Mike_E No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    The colored light in the background is done with a gelled snoot.

    A cheap hack is to take 2 or 3 colored gels and overlap them and use a piece of heavy construction paper to make a tube that fits around the flash you have on a stand pointed at the floor behind the subject. The lower the flash the more of the floor that is covered.

    You can also trim the gells to make different shapes within the cone of light on the floor.
     
  6. RONDAL

    RONDAL TPF Noob!

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    umbrella or softbox camera right for main light. likely from above.
    umbrella/bare from the left for side fill, or could be a reflector

    ambient orange light likely from a hall lamp on the floor left.

    blue gelled flash behind the subject for backlight and colored background.
     

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