Natural light portraits


TPF Noob!
Oct 7, 2007
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Hi all,

I'm looking for advice: I have not obtained lighting with my camera, so I am playing only with a Canon eos 40D and a 28-70 f2.8L lens. I have fiddled with the pop-up flash and found it's surprisingly handy for fill when I'm snapping family pics, but not much else.

So: back in the day I used a 1N with the same lens and Provia or Sensia or Astia or whatever at ASA 50 or 100, and I did some portraits indoors using sunlight through the windows. I got some really stunning results (if I can find them amid the thousands of slides I've shovelled into boxes over the years I'll share).

The room I used to shoot in got big fat orange evening light, and the shots had a slight incandescent cast to them, but sunlight is very different and they still looked kinda neat. It was great lighting for fair skinned nudes, actually, and the trees outside made very cool late-day patterns.

The room I have to shoot in now has unobstructed, big, fat pink sunrise light, probably a lot funner to work with. I personally love shooting through blinds and cut outs and such, and can't wait to start shooting.

But...I still want to read up on natural lighting techniques. SO...

Books? Web sites? Advice? All are welcome - anyone? These shots will not be nudes (my wife a.) will not pose at all and b.) wouldn't tolerate nudes here) and I am probably going to stage backgrounds and shoot portraitrs of my kids.

Anything would be helpful.

Check out ILP's forum. There are many photogs there that only use natural light and some of the most beautiful portrait work you will ever lay eyes on.

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