The Family Christmas Portrait - First Dual Flash Attempt

Discussion in 'General Gallery' started by manaheim, Dec 15, 2008.

  1. manaheim

    manaheim Jedi Bunnywabbit Staff Member Supporting Member

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    C&C appreciated.

    This is my first attempt at using both flashes off-camera (SB-600 and SB-800), using the D300 built-in commander mode using the on-board flash to trigger.

    I'm curious to hear what people have to say about the lighting, but I also don't have tons of experience in portraits, so any general critique is also very welcome. Be as abusive as you like, I'm not fragile.

    BTW, yes these are my daughters, but don't worry about that. Feel free to point out any hideous mutations as well. :)

    Thanks!

    ==1==
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    ==2==
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    ==3==
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  2. manaheim

    manaheim Jedi Bunnywabbit Staff Member Supporting Member

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    bumpage? :)
     
  3. jv17

    jv17 TPF Noob!

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    i love your pictures they are cute though
     
  4. Big Mike

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

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    Cute kids :)

    The biggest issue I see, is that their eyes are dark and they have no catch lights...except for the younger girl in the last photo...she has a hint of a catch light in that one.

    Basic lighting. You have a Main (or Key) light which is used to light your subjects and give them shape. You want it to light some parts of your subject but create shadows on other parts, maybe with a nice gradient in between (soft light). A basic position for this light is 45 degrees from the camera and slightly above your subjects.

    Now, if you don't want the shadows from the main light to be too dark, you need a Fill light. A Fill light should put light into the shadows created by main light. A true fill light will not create it's own shadows (that you can see)...so it's usually less powerful (or set farther back) than the main light.

    Many people who use a two light set up, will set them both at 45 degrees and to either side...but for a basic main/fill lighting set up, the fill light can be much closer to the camera. It could be on camera or even on the same side as the key light. It's primary purpose is only to fill the shadows. However, a benefit of having the light closer to the camera, is that it can give you catchlights...if your main light isn't in a position to give you catchlights.

    Of course, you can move your main light around (and maybe lower) until you can see it in your subject's eyes.
     
  5. manaheim

    manaheim Jedi Bunnywabbit Staff Member Supporting Member

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    ^^^^^^^ oooo!!! Yes, you're RIGHT! I totally missed that their eyes didn't have catch lights. Darnit! I should know better.

    These are great tips, Mike, thanks. I'll take another crack at it and put the second light close to the camera (I did have them both at 45 degreesish... I didn't realize you needed the light nearer to the camera to get the catch light, but now that I think about it more, it makes sense)

    Thanks again!
     

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