Light

June 24, 2015  •  Leave a Comment

Lighting can be tricky. If you learn a few useful techniques, your photography will greatly improve and become more consistent...

The toughest time to shoot is in the middle of the day when the sun is directly overhead. It creates harsh shadows, people squint, and the ‘colour’ of the light is neutral.
Optimal times for the best natural light are what’s referred to as the ‘Golden Hours’ -just after sunrise or just before sunset. The colour of light is warmer which is always welcome when shooting portraits. The shadows are cast in a more horizontal position and tend to enhance the subject.
The challenge is that we can’t always shoot what we want during the Golden Hours. Plenty of action happens in the middle of the day...


There are ways of working with midday light. 
-Cloud cover: A lightly overcast day softens the light and shadows. 
-Find open shade: If shooting people, be careful that your subject doesn’t end up with unintentional bright light spots on them created from dappled shade.
-Patience: When shooting, pay close attention to how the light is interacting with the landscape or subject you want to take a photo of. Oftentimes, it is as simple as waiting for the right moment for the light to change or revisiting the site at different times of day.
-Diffusers and photo reflectors: These are relatively inexpensive. If you are tight on money you can easily create your own. It can be as simple as having a couple of friends hold a white sheet above your subject to diffuse the light and/or a white card can be used to bounce light to fill in dark shadows.
-Correct it in post: There is a lot of amazing freeware out there. The trick is to edit ‘lightly’ -another words, it shouldn’t be overly obvious that you edited the photo unless there is an intention behind it.

Please feel free to share your experience or insights...

 


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