Whoops, did I just buy a lighting kit? 1st photos - Crits and comments appreciated!

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by Dubious Drewski, Mar 12, 2008.

  1. Dubious Drewski

    Dubious Drewski TPF Noob!

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    I don't know what I'm doing. My credit card company just raised my limit by $2500, and now my weak self control has taken the bait! First I spend $400 on the Pentax 540 Flash, now I drop another $500 on an Opus M1002 lighting kit! Argh!

    Well, uh, I guess I should try to make a profit from all of this, eh?

    Here are my very first attempts at studio lighting(or ANY lighting for photography). Despite my near-completed New Media degree, I have zero training in lighting. :( Please let me know what I've done wrong and right in the following photographs:

    Check out my gallery here for the full story.

    Or look at some of the samples here:
    [​IMG]
     
  2. crystal_lynn

    crystal_lynn I am sure I sound childish

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    Well I am not expert since I have only had my lights for a month and I have only done two shoots.

    I like 5, but the highlights are just a tad blown out although for this photo it works.

    In 1 the background is not evenly lit. In 3 I just don't like looking up the nose, but the lighting seems fine.

    HTH
     
  3. jols

    jols TPF Noob!

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    in number three

    is that ryhs ivans?
     
  4. Sarah23

    Sarah23 TPF Noob!

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    haha...i know NOTHING about lighting...but just wanted to say i love your expressions!!!! You go from serious and handsome, to a goofy nutjob within no time at all! hahahahah!
     
  5. Meysha

    Meysha still being picky Vicky

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    Love the expressions.
    Your lighting is good, no weird shadows where there shouldn't be., and you'll get even better with more practise.

    The only criticism I have is for the background in the black and white shots. It blends in a bit too much with the subject for my liking. Darker or lighter would've worked a bit better I think.
     
  6. JerryPH

    JerryPH No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    - Watch the DOF
    - Watch the blowouts
    - Watch out for green wash-over from the backgrounds.

    You can use a deeper DOF to keep the ears in focus when the camera pin-points on the nose. The eyes are the MOST important thing to have in focus over anything else.

    Meter a little more carefully. You are not blownout obviously, but you are on the edge.

    Time for you to visit the Strobist site and get yourself THIS book!

    If that is you doing a few self portraits, I will say that you have a gift that is outside the photography field that will help you in it when it comes time to shoot people... a fantastic sense of humor with a feeling of extrovertedness... if that makes sense?
     
  7. Dubious Drewski

    Dubious Drewski TPF Noob!

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    Crystal: Funny thing is, I purposely changed the lighting in 1 because I thought it was more interesting. You have to see the uncropped version to see what I mean. I was going for a soft glow behind the head.

    jols: yes, yes it is.

    Sarah: Why, Thank you. Can I have your number?

    Meysha: Yeah, I suspected the backgrounds would be a challenge. I have VERY little space to work with, so I have limited options for getting distance between me and the curtain. I'm sure I'll figure something out.

    Jerry: Thank you very much, that's exactly what I'm looking for. I purposely used my 50mm at full open so I could get a really shallow DOF, you think it might have been too shallow? You think I should try to keep DOF covering up to the ears? (Focus was very hard, because I was guessing the focus, pressing the shutter and running out in front of the camera to pose. It will be much easier once I get a friend in there)
    Blowouts are my fault. I did that in photoshop. I see now that I should have restrained myself a bit. It's just that when I see the histogram and everything's all bunched up to the left, I feel like I gotta center it, no matter what!

    Green. Now that I didn't like. That's actually a white bedsheet behind me. The strobes turned it green. I'm not really sure how to fix that. Gels? The kit came with a few.

    And yes, that's me. I am a goofball. We'll just see if that helps or hinders my future photography career. ;)

    (And lots of people are always recomending the strobist. Yes, It's an awesome site! But it's almost like the "Create new post" button here in the forums should just automatically redirect you to the Strobist, with the way people are always pointing you there :p)
     
  8. Dubious Drewski

    Dubious Drewski TPF Noob!

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    Quick question though: Lighting was easy with my kit 18-55, but as soon as I put my vintage 50mm on there, every shot overexposed to nearly pure white, even after I reduced ISO to 100 and the master flash unit to -3 stops. I finally got proper exposure by stacking an ND4 AND and ND8 on my lens! Crazy, eh?

    The studio lights are set up as slaves triggered via the Pentax 540 I have on my camera. Do you think that maybe the 50mm lens(Which has NO electrical contacts) was screwing up my P-TTL metering and somehow also affecting my remote lights? I really have no idea, but I know I shouldn't need to use two strong ND filters just to get proper exposure!

    And what's with the green?! That's supposed to be white! Especially if my face isn't green.
     
  9. ghpham

    ghpham TPF Noob!

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    alot of people have tried self portrait and have come up short with pictures being out of focus here, but it didn't happen here. You did quite well. The expressions crack me up.
     
  10. JerryPH

    JerryPH No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Not unless you were motion sick. :confused:

    Turn off your TTL, go all manual. Your results will improve becuase you are more in control, not the camera. Unless your strobes are *all* TTL compatible, you are lucky you got a picture at all. :lol:
     
  11. Flash Harry

    Flash Harry TPF Noob!

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    Instead of stacking filters close down the lens f8 f11 f16 for your exposures, apart from giving a correct exposure you'll also gain DOF, focus throughout the image will improve. The green/cyan colour of the background is probably due to your white balance settings or the colour temperature of these lights. H
     
  12. Dubious Drewski

    Dubious Drewski TPF Noob!

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    I consided stopping down the aperture a bit, but that would have defeated the purpose of me putting that 1.4 lens on there in the first place. I wanted that shallow DOF. Maybe I can ease up on that. :p

    What I'm really wondering is if having that manual lens on there screws up the P-TTL. Does it?
    It's kind of an urgent question, sorry. For now, I guess I'll just stick with my 18-55 for portraiture until I figure this all out, I guess.
     

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