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31

Film makers avoid a transparent film because: Bright exposing light will penetrate and then hit the pressure plate. The pressure plate has a flat black coat. Nevertheless, highlights are bright and will reflect, re-exposing the film from the rear. This causes a halo like effect surrounding highlights called a halation. To avoid, modern films have an opaque ...


18

Soft boxes typically have a more focused and sometimes more powerful quality of light while remaining soft. The biggest reason you might want to use a soft box over an umbrella is to control the spill of light. Where an umbrella will reflect light into a scene as well as transmit through the material, a soft box will force all light to either die or be ...


17

This kind of flash diffuser produces a "bare-bulb" effect. It's not like a softbox or umbrella, which works by effectively making a larger light source. Instead, it makes the light from your flash less focused, so it's diffused by bouncing off walls and other objects. Normally, a hotshoe flash works like a spotlight — it focuses its output in a cone. That's ...


15

Optically, all this should do is reduce the output power of the flash. The filters on the sensor itself are going to make it so you only get the red green and blue on each pixel. This device would just absorb a bunch of the light that could reach the subject. For example, some of the light to bounce off a red part is going to reach a blue sensor and not ...


14

Tapetum lucidum is not your regular mirror. It's a retroreflector. Or, to be precise, an incredibly numerous array of tiny retroreflectors. It doesn't just shine back, it shines every "ray" of light precisely in the same direction it came from. To have an effective tapetum for your camera, a single "grain" of reflector would have to be no larger than a ...


12

The most available large sheet material is corrugated cardboard. If you have a single layer sheet, you should first glue at least another single layer sheet on top of it to make it more stable. Rotate one of the sheets by 90° so that the "grain directions" of the layers cross each other. Like plywood. For the reflective surfaces: White paper provides a ...


11

Hard light (i.e. a single bare lightsource) from underneath. Look at any old black and white horror film and you'll see this technique used. Or for a more modern example of the [mis]use of this technique see Jill Greenberg's photos of John McCain: http://www.rachelhulin.com/blog/2008/09/pdn-on-jill-greenberg-the-atlantic-and-john-mccain.html


11

An octabox will give you nice round catchlights and produce generally more natural looking highlights and reflections. The straight edge of a softbox often sticks out when shooting with reflective surfaces more than a more organic curve or circle. On the other hand softboxes are easier to mask and gobo due to the straight edges, and more suitable to certain ...


8

Automotive windshield reflectors can function well as photographic reflectors. The best ones are the shiny silver accordion-fold ones (they often have a "bubble wrap" -like core).


7

Imagine your subject in a very small room, and the walls are painted in red. A large window is giving you some very lovely soft light on the subject's face. You have decided there is no need for fill light (either because the light is soft enough, or you are happy with the contrast/shadow). But wait, since the room is so small, the sunshine is hitting on ...


7

A large piece of foam core board (or mat board) is good for portraits. Clamped on a stand opposite of a soft box (key light) just outside of framing. It could be black on one side for absorbing light for more dramatic shadows. Or paint it gold or...?


7

I know they have specialty cases, soft and hard, The "special cases" are often fairly rudimentary canvas bags that just happen to be long and skinny, but they don't necessarily offer a lot of protection. Are umbrellas sturdy enough to survive in a backpack with light stands and lens in pouches? Think of a regular rain umbrella. A good quality lighting ...


6

To my understanding, a Beauty dish is not really about making the light softer. That's what softboxes / bounce are for. The true value of a beauty dish is that it focuses the beam of light in a 3D point/zone, thus simulating a virtual light at that point. This virtual light has the same property as a real one. Getting this virtual light right in front of ...


6

catch lights: round/octagonal with umbrellas, square with softboxes ease of setup - umbrellas are generally much easier to set up and attach to a stand stability - umbrellas tend to catch the wind outdoors and tumble more than soft boxes spill - umbrellas will spill more light which can be a problem in close quarters (however there are so-called umbrella ...


6

You're correct. When the black covering is on, the umbrella is intended to reflect the light. When the black cover is off, you change the orientation of the umbrella so that your light goes through it instead (shoot through). Your linked item describes that in the product description. It's a handy feature to have (I have a couple of the Paul Buff ones) ...


6

A regular softbox is not going to fit on this type of light. They are designed for strobes with a single bulb which acts as a point light source and attach via a small hole in the back. This light seems to consist of a series of florescent tubes and is thus a much larger lightsource to begin with, and will be pretty soft in it's standard configuration. You ...


6

I am not sure about who used the Beauty Dish for photography first, but the principle of evenly illumination via secondary reflection is accredited to danish mathematician Piet Hein, who constructed the R(a) - lamp in 1931 to alleviate the harsh direct light from the electric bulb in reading-situations. source: http://www.futuraoslo.no/index.php?/produkter/...


6

I have a Godox V860C light and a Godox Cells II remote trigger. OK, from this, I gather that you have a Canon camera. The Godox V860C is an eTTL-II-capable flash, so if you want to use that capability, it's there. However, the Cells II triggers are manual triggers that do not communicate eTTL information, so with this specific combination you do not have ...


5

I see an equal number of red, green, and blue dots - meaning if you looked at this from sufficient distance, just like looking at TV pixels, this umbrella is really GRAY. Any reflected light from it is also going to be essentially gray unless it's focused as it is in the picture. Meaning the reflection from this will be white light with an equal amount of ...


5

They say a picture paints a thousand words, so I'll augment the existing answers with a basic MS Paint representation. The falloff is depicted by the yellow curves below the light paths. It's very rough, but given an 1/r² falloff, you can see how the falloff is much more gradual from the light source furthest from the subject.


5

Do you have a camera that has a usable ISO 1600? (Hint: if you're using a full-frame camera of recent vintage, the answer is "yes". The answer is also "yes" for a goodly number of smaller-sensor cameras these days.) If you do, and you also own a "full sized" on-camera flash (Nikon SB910, Canon 580EX/600EX RT, or an approximate equivalent, whether your camera'...


5

For a large reflector go to a stationery shop and buy a large sheet of white paper for card. It's not as portable or durable as a proper reflector, but does the job.


5

When artificial lights are used in photography they're commonly diffused such as with a softbox. If the light has to be bounced off something to get it to the right place, the diffusing can be combined with the reflecting. The difference in reflectivity isn't that great - no more than about than a stop, depending on how much of the scattered light is ...


4

As has been described above, the omni-diffusers do not expand the volume of the light source, rather they only expand the cone of light beyond the quite directional cone a bare flash provides. I often see photographers in clubs or bars using these and the results speak for themselves. Often the light will harshly falloff down past the person's face and ...


4

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 ...


4

Octaboxes tend to focus the light a bit more than square or rectangular softboxes. Some fashion and portrait photographers favor them for several reasons: More light out of smaller box because of focusing effect Interesting catchlights in the eyes. If you look at a lot of portraits, you can start to recognize the ones shot with beauty dishes, octabanks, and ...


4

Buy a "space blanket" from a sale bin. Search for that on the web and it will turn up places to buy for a buck or so. Fold it over any convenient frame, board, wire loop, or in-situ surface. Secure with gaffers tape ('duct tape'). The tape costs more than the silvery material. This is far more durable than paper, foam, etc. and a whole blanket-sized piece ...


4

Yes, it is possible. Two factors need to be considered: The power of the flash and the sync speed of your camera. Flash power (Guide number) is being discussed in other answers. Consider that adding a softbox reduces the effective power of any flash. That is because the softbox spreads the same amount of light over a greater area, but also because part of ...


4

The reason for stacking diffusers is generally to make the light from a modifier more even. It's a decent strategy if you're getting "hot spots" on your subject because the light from a flash is coming through the middle of a less-than-ideally-designed modifier hotter than it is coming off the edges of a modifier. That's why many of the best soft boxes, ...


3

Yes, with the black straws, it is going to absorb most of the light that does not go directly through the straws. The smaller in diameter the straws, the more direct the light has to be traveling to get through and the more light will be absorbed. If the straws were white, it would actually get brighter as the reflected light would be more focused, but it ...


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