One light practice [self-portrait]

tingeliM

TPF Noob!
Joined
Oct 30, 2011
Messages
90
Reaction score
15
Location
Tampere, Finland
Can others edit my Photos
Photos NOT OK to edit
I have a friend coming over again on Sunday. She has agreed to be one of my (so far) two practice models as I try to learn shooting with my flash and lighting people properly. I figured out some stuff yesterday (after quite a bit of frustration and tips from a photographer friend who knows better) and I had another go today. I want everything to be as clear as possible on Sunday so I practice with my own face first.

I had my speedlite on camera left pointing slightly upwards and I had a round diffusor in my hand. I have a reflector, but couldn't use it for this shot, because I didn't have enough hands or anything else to hold it up.
Any tips and tricks and DIY tips for a one light home studio (very limited space and budget) are very welcome! =)

6795129665_fd8e8eaca7.jpg


Canon EOS 500D + 50mm 1.8 II + Canon Speedlite 320EX
ISO100 1/200 f11
 
Last edited:

cgipson1

TPF Noob!
Joined
Aug 18, 2011
Messages
17,143
Reaction score
4,350
Can others edit my Photos
Photos NOT OK to edit
some small lightstands are very useful... especially with a small boom that has reflector clamps on it. That way you can position things the way you want them.

Check out Adorama or B&H... lots of choices.. all price ranges..
 
OP
tingeliM

tingeliM

TPF Noob!
Joined
Oct 30, 2011
Messages
90
Reaction score
15
Location
Tampere, Finland
Can others edit my Photos
Photos NOT OK to edit
Thanks cgipson1 for the comment! I know those exist, but unfortunately I don't have the money to spend at the moment (a poor student and the shipping costs aren't really attractive to me at the moment). As soon as I do get some "extra" cash (is there ever really extra?) I'll buy me a proper lightstand. My flash is currently on an old tripod and it serves me fine for now, although it does take up more space than a lightstand would.
 

Derrel

Mr. Rain Cloud
Joined
Jul 23, 2009
Messages
48,227
Reaction score
18,923
Location
USA
Website
www.pbase.com
Can others edit my Photos
Photos OK to edit
Well, a "small" setup can use found objects as reflectors and diffusers. Pizza boxes can make acceptable reflectors--the white topped kind are the best. They can also be covered with aluminum foil, for a more specular effect. Doors are also decent reflectors....yes, "doors". You can also tape aluminum foil to doors. Milk jugs make decent diffusers. Bed sheets can be used as large reflectors.Masking tape works quite well as a way to lash together all types of "stuff". Cardboard boxes or sheets of cardboard can be painted white as a way to make reflectors (I see you're in Finland, so the pizza boxes might not be common there???).

PVC pipe can be formed into nice squares and rectangles using "elbow joints"...a LOT of lighting gear can be made out of PVC pipe and various connectors, fairly cheaply, and is can be disassembled and stowed away in minimal space.
 

brush

TPF Noob!
Joined
Dec 14, 2011
Messages
173
Reaction score
59
Location
Atlanta
Website
www.flickr.com
Can others edit my Photos
Photos NOT OK to edit
I think it's a great shot, I like how your eyes pop. Can I ask a dumb question? How did you get the focus so good? I'm assuming you set a self timer & then ran into position to shoot...it's focused perfectly on your eyes, how'd you manage that with nothing to aim at while you're looking through the viewfinder?
 

jwbryson1

TPF Noob!
Joined
Apr 21, 2011
Messages
4,280
Reaction score
949
Can others edit my Photos
Photos OK to edit
Nice shot! Great follow up to the melting model...
 
OP
tingeliM

tingeliM

TPF Noob!
Joined
Oct 30, 2011
Messages
90
Reaction score
15
Location
Tampere, Finland
Can others edit my Photos
Photos NOT OK to edit
I think you did pretty darn well with what you had.

Thank you so much! ^^

Well, a "small" setup can use found objects as reflectors and diffusers. Pizza boxes can make acceptable reflectors--the white topped kind are the best. They can also be covered with aluminum foil, for a more specular effect. Doors are also decent reflectors....yes, "doors". You can also tape aluminum foil to doors. Milk jugs make decent diffusers. Bed sheets can be used as large reflectors.Masking tape works quite well as a way to lash together all types of "stuff". Cardboard boxes or sheets of cardboard can be painted white as a way to make reflectors (I see you're in Finland, so the pizza boxes might not be common there???).

PVC pipe can be formed into nice squares and rectangles using "elbow joints"...a LOT of lighting gear can be made out of PVC pipe and various connectors, fairly cheaply, and is can be disassembled and stowed away in minimal space.

Hehe :D We do have all kinds of pizza boxes here in Finland. ^^ Thank you very much for the tips!!

I think it's a great shot, I like how your eyes pop. Can I ask a dumb question? How did you get the focus so good? I'm assuming you set a self timer & then ran into position to shoot...it's focused perfectly on your eyes, how'd you manage that with nothing to aim at while you're looking through the viewfinder?

There is such a thing as a stupid question, but that is not it. ^^ I actually have a remote shutter release, so I don't have to run in between the camera and the seat (I've done that in the past and it's a pain in the ass). Plus I used Canon EOS Utility software to view the images straight from the computer screen so I don't have to go to the camera even for that. But if you don't have the remote, you can always just use something in your place to focus on, and the small aperture gives you a nice large depth of field so the focusing is easier. I did sharpen the eyes in post too, but they were sharp to begin with (obviously).

Nice shot! Great follow up to the melting model...

Thank you!! =)
 
Last edited:

Most reactions

Top