more lighting practice.

Discussion in 'General Gallery' started by ronlane, Jun 4, 2018.

  1. ronlane

    ronlane What's next? Supporting Member

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    Spending a lot of time working on lighting since I built my DIY backdrop holder.

    Which do you prefer? Is the lighting about right in both images?

    These are my favorites of both set-ups.

    1) Today, I decided to try black background and hair light. So I used the green velour backdrop and put about 6 feet between me and it. Then I used the 38" octabox camera left as key and a speedlight with a rogue flash bender helping to focus the hair light and a reflector to help fill in the left side of the face.

    RL-2light-11-Edit.jpg

    2) For this image, I moved the reflector and replaced it with the speedlight as the fill light on the camera right. The lighting ratio is 4:1 as measured by light meter.

    RL-2light-30-Edit.jpg


     
  2. smoke665

    smoke665 TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    In number 1 I'm always partial to a hair light (might explain why I keep accumulating so many lights). For some reason the fill reflector seems off. Reflector placement on a self portrait is extremely tough for me.

    I prefer number 2, as far as ratios and a hair light here would have been the icing on the cake....er head. LOL With the right background, red is a good choice for you, as would any of the warm primaries. I'd likely stay away from the cool colors.
     
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  3. ronlane

    ronlane What's next? Supporting Member

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    Thanks @smoke665 for the comments. I agree, I do like the partial hair light. I agree that I was struggling today with the placement of the reflector in #1. It's funny that a small thing like not lighting that green background would make a difference like that.

    I'll just keep practicing.
     
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  4. smoke665

    smoke665 TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    It's not the lighting of the background it's the color combination you chose to highlight. FYI you can make a white background black and a black background pure white or any color you chose just by changing your lights. Check this out even after watching it I didn't believe it. I had to set up the lights and do it before it registered.

    I saw where you mentioned a meter. Have you always had an incident meter or did you just get one. For me the incident meter was the turning point from guessing to calculated results. That and a marathon session with one of my wifes wig heads and hair shooting and lighting and changing until I had a basic understanding of light and shadow on a face.
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2018
  5. tirediron

    tirediron Watch the Birdy! Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Looking at them both in full resolution; I prefer the quality of light in #1; the second just seems a bit too high in specularity. Not a lot, but just enough to me too much. That said, I prefer the light positioning in the second. The other issue with the second is that the camera position seems just a bit too low for me. #2 would be the definite winner (IMO) had the light been a closer/softer/less specular.
     
  6. adamhiram

    adamhiram No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I agree with @tirediron - I like the lighting better in #2, but with the higher camera position and hair light from #1. I personally prefer a white reflector to a fill light just because I have a hangup on dual catch lights, but I also sometimes struggle with reflector placement for a self portrait. Great progress!
     
  7. ronlane

    ronlane What's next? Supporting Member

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    I've had it for a while and use it sporadically. I am trying to get better about using it to check the lighting. (I know shame on me). I know that you can change a white to black and black to white if you have enough lighting and space. It is easier to make the green go black than the white, lol. Thank you for the input.

    Thanks John. The key light was the same in both shots, so I will assume that the specularity is being caused by the speedlight that I used for the fill. As for the camera position, I will have to look at that and raise it up a bit. Thank you for the input.

    Thank you Adam. I will keep practicing with both of these set-ups. I agree that I would like to have a 3 light set-up to use.

    I am trying to get away from the 2 budget (cheap) studio strobes that I have because I am wanting to sell them and get the Adorama XPLOR 600 Pro. Once I get this, I will be able to use it as a key light, my streaklight 360 as a fill light and the speedlight as a hair light or to light the background, which ever I choose.

    The problem that I am having with the studio strobes is that I have them turned down all the way so getting different lighting ratios is a major challenge. They also do not have the bowens mount for modifiers, so I have either a bounce or shoot through umbrella, which is not as soft as the octabox I have.

    Again, thank you all for helping me with suggestions and I will continue to work with what I got to be able to solve the problems I have.
     
  8. smoke665

    smoke665 TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    My current studio setup is an AB400 with a 22" beauty dish (with or without grid as required), a AB400 with a 36" gridded octabox, an Impact 160 with gridded snoot, and Impact 160 with a shovel reflector for background when needed. My go to is F/8, ISO 100, 1/125th, with this setting I can keep the power low (but not excessively) which gives me a more rapid recovery on the lights. In studio, shutter controls ambient light, aperture/ISO controls the exposure, because the flash duration is so short you rarely need a shorter shutter speed, in effect is your shutter, if that makes sense.
     
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  9. ronlane

    ronlane What's next? Supporting Member

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    Thanks smoke. My go to in studio is f/8, ISO 200, 1/250th and I have the power as low as I can on those studio strobes and still feel as though they are too hot. Most of the time, I use a bounce umbrella on them. I guess I should get them a little closer and see what the results are.
     
  10. smoke665

    smoke665 TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    Do they have a diffuser? If not go to Wally World and pick up some thin white nylon cloth to pin to the front.
     
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  11. ronlane

    ronlane What's next? Supporting Member

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    No, I do not have a diffuser for the umbrella. I may have to look try that.
     
  12. adamhiram

    adamhiram No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I don't know if this would work on the budget studio strobes you are referring to, but I use these Godox/Glow/Neewer adapters pretty extensively to add a Bowens mount onto any light that can be clamped in.
     

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