Alley in Pisa, Italy

by Lars Kotthoff

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9

In the immortal words of the late National Geographic photo editor Bob Gilka, "Kid, if you want to be a better photographer, you're going to have to stand in front of more interesting stuff." That said, welcome to the sometimes not-so-wonderful world of the commercial/industrial photographer. As often as not, making a dramatic, exciting picture of something ...


8

First of all, it's important to realize that, when you photograph a reflective object, you're actually photographing the surrounding scenery as it reflects off the object. This means that it's not enough to just set the object in a lightbox and maybe point some spot lights at it, at least unless you want to make the reflections rather simple and dull. ...


5

You need to shoot at either sunrise or set (sunset is generally warmer in tone), when the sun is very low in the sky. Shoot with the sun behind the model (taking care not to look directly at it if possible). As you are shooting into the sun, you need some light source to light the front of your model: this could either be a diffused flash or a reflector. As ...


5

Lightmeters are superior to in camera metering because they are able to measure the incident light, not just the light reflected off the subject. Reflected light metering is less accurate as the camera/meter has no way of telling the difference between a white cat that is massively underexposed and a black cat that is correctly exposed. With incident ...


3

Putting the lightmeter under the chin makes sense to me because: a) It is incident light what's being measured, and the little sphere is to be located as close as posible to the surface being iluminated (i.e. the face's skin). Putting the lightmeter at the same distance from the light source is crucial as light intensity varies with distance to the source. ...


3

In digital photography, the most issues come from the dark portions of the image where sensor noise has the most impact on the quality of the result. Electronic sensors accumulate light, but while they are collecting light, they also collect random noise. To avoid this noise being an issue, a technique known as ETTR or exposure to the right is even used ...


2

When it comes to diffusers you should be looking to use the same sizes as you would for monolights. The flash tube of a monolight often isn't that much larger than the head of a speedlight and the size of the modifier is mainly what creates the effect. This is echoed by the soft mods section in Strobist blog's gear recommendations. Strobist blog is highly ...


2

As in many cases the key to reverse engineering the light lies in the catchlights (reflections of the original lighting in the subject's eyes): Here we can see that a single hard (no diffuser) lightsource was placed above and to the right of the subject (as the camera sees it). There were no other lightsources on the subject, but in many of the images a ...


2

My understanding of subtractive lighting is such that you take control of natural ambient lighting by reducing or reflecting it. This work looks more like it was taken indoors, and more in line with low-key photography, essentially photography in which shadows are the predominant part of the photo. The basic setup is a very dark room, one strong light, ...


2

There's a bit of post production going on in that image that is probably clouding things somewhat. If you look at the area at the top of the image it's clearly been blown out (overexposed) and then brought back from pure white to a dirty grey pink colour. This says to me two things - the contrast of the image has been lowered so that the blacks and whites ...


2

For multi-flash TTL setups, the photographer first puts the flashes in groups and then adjusts the power between those groups by setting up power ratios. (Say for example that Group A should have 4 times the power of Group B, or a 4:1 ratio.) Prior to the pre-flash, the master flash communicates these ratios and the overall power level to be used to the ...


1

There is an article on strobist that goes over shooting a CFL bulb. The author forgoes HDR and the like and just uses speedlights. If you don't have access to strobes and are only using continuous lighting, then you can still balance the CFL with your other lighting; simply set your camera up for a longer exposure (stopping down the lens, low iso, and low ...


1

I just took a few test shots with YN-622C triggers and my YN-568EX (I usually use them in M, so hadn't thought to test eTTL function), and with the single speedlight, if I had wireless and groups on, I was getting consistent underexposure. If I turned wireless off, eTTL exposure was spot-on. I did NOT get inconsistent exposure or missed fires. I also tested ...


1

While the specifics are somewhat brand-dependent, this question has essentially been answered already in one of your follow-up questions. Start with the following assumptions: There is no magic involved; everything that happens will be as simple as it possibly can be and still work; The system is not and cannot be foolproof; any sufficiently advanced fool ...


1

This question (and its answers) is wa-a-a-ay old, but it could stand to have another couple of good reasons thrown in for good measure. The existing answers are good, but they don't touch all of the bases. The first addition is more pertinent to product photography, especially when photographing glossy surfaces (glass and polished metals, in particular). In ...



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