Another attempt

Joined
May 5, 2005
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Idaho
The other day when I posted photos of the babies I got some wonderful ideas and resources from all of you. We bought a couple of things and then tried again with the twins yesterday. This is the only one that had both of them smiling. (Isn't it funny how they both stick out their tongues the same when they smile?)

I know that one is falling over, but it is the best we could do.

I kept two lights up front with about the same power as I wanted both babies to be equally lit. But what do I do about the catchlights?

I know it isn't perfect, but this photo has made everyone in the family smile which is a rewarding thing.

(Trish, thanks for the idea about the toole. It really is fun.)

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Joined
Jan 29, 2005
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33,092
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St. George, Utah
This shot is delightful and with both babies smiling it is special as well. I too used toole to good effect here. It was my wife's idea and I think for young babies it works great. I wouldn't worry about the two catchlights but if it bothers you it would be easy to clone one of them out. Love your football theme.

Did you get a chance to look here for more ideas on posing babies and children?
 
Joined
May 5, 2005
Messages
18,040
Location
Idaho
This shot is delightful and with both babies smiling it is special as well. I too used toole to good effect here. It was my wife's idea and I think for young babies it works great. I wouldn't worry about the two catchlights but if it bothers you it would be easy to clone one of them out.

Did you get a chance to look here for more ideas on posing babies and children?
Gordon,
I love that photo of yours. In fact, I showed it to Heather and told her that we've got to find a tutu for Harlee when she gets a bit older.

I also looked at the website you suggested. The photos are wonderful. Is that your daughter's gallery?

Thanks for your help. Sorry I didn't acknowledge the link you sent earlier.
 
Joined
Apr 14, 2005
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Location
Salt Lake City, UT
What a keeper of a shot! (The babies are keepers too.) You'll have to do photography full-time to keep up with all the grandkids and landscapes.
 
Joined
May 13, 2006
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3,441
Location
Illinois
Terri - this shot is so cute....

Perfect or not...it doesn't matter because few things are.

Very nice.
 
Joined
May 6, 2005
Messages
262
Location
So. CA
Hi Terri,

Very cute shot! The babies are adorable!

I have to comment on one aspect of your lighting that I think could be improved upon. A common mistake that a lot of beginners (yours truly included :smile: ) in lighting fall into is to crosslight: use two key lights, each positioned at 45 degrees on opposite sides. The concept seems sound: light from both sides and get even lighting for the subject(s). Well, it usually results in a rather unnatural lighting pattern on the subjects. Why? Most of us are most familiar with a single light source, usually from above. With your two key lights, you are creating shadows on opposite sides. Note the two shadows on each side of each baby's nose. In addition you are creating areas that get little or no light, i.e. between the babies' heads and in the nostrils. Initially, it's hard to put your finger on what makes crosslighting look not quite 'right' but once you start seeing it, you'll begin recognizing it more and more.

Ok, so you are probably asking: how should I light it so that I get even lighting on the subjects? The first place I would start is to place the main light to the side of the camera: 30 to 45 degrees to the side and about 18 inches above their eye level. For fill, place a light as close as you can to the camera axis. This way, you only get one shadow, the one from the main light. The fill light will only serve to fill in the shadows, but will not cause any additional shadows. If you are worried about having one baby more lit than the other baby because he is closer to the key light, you'll want to feather the light, which means, aim the key light more towards the baby that is farther from the light. Since lights will 'fall off' as you get farther from the point the light is pointed, there will be a point where both subjects are lit equally.

For an over-the-top example of crosslighting gone bad, check out this article. It is kind of amusing in a sad way. To me, it's pretty clear that it is the crosslighting that caused the problem.

I hope this was helpful. Let me know if you have any questions. You've got a great start on studio lighting and some great subjects!
 
Joined
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Messages
18,040
Location
Idaho
What a keeper of a shot! (The babies are keepers too.) You'll have to do photography full-time to keep up with all the grandkids and landscapes.
Brian,
I've certainly been taking a lot of photos. But what a great learning experience for me. Glad you like the shot.

Terri,

This shot is wounderful I love the expressions. I would not worry about the catchlights. If they bother you can clone one out.

Dan
Dan,
Thanks. Glad you like the shot. It is very challenging trying to get two little babies who can't sit up to be in a shot together. It was pure luck getting one with both of them smiling. Hope it happens again before they turn 20 or so!:biggrin:

Tilt or not thats a great shot!
Thank you so much

Terri - this shot is so cute....

Perfect or not...it doesn't matter because few things are.

Very nice.
Glad you like it. I don't ever expect perfection, just something that my family will like.
 
Joined
Mar 31, 2005
Messages
1,311
Terri,

Soooo Cute!!!! From my non- pro-gram-cam perspective it looks great! The toole works! It is great for "nakey" shots also. Don't get too attached to any one style...the babies will be constantly changing. Just remember each month try to focus on the "New" accomplishment the babies have made in development. That gives you a goal while shooting, and the captured shot will be a milestone memory!

I love wathcing these guys and sweet little Harlee grow!
 
Joined
May 5, 2005
Messages
18,040
Location
Idaho
Hi Terri,

Very cute shot! The babies are adorable!

I have to comment on one aspect of your lighting that I think could be improved upon. A common mistake that a lot of beginners (yours truly included :smile: ) in lighting fall into is to crosslight: use two key lights, each positioned at 45 degrees on opposite sides. The concept seems sound: light from both sides and get even lighting for the subject(s). Well, it usually results in a rather unnatural lighting pattern on the subjects. Why? Most of us are most familiar with a single light source, usually from above. With your two key lights, you are creating shadows on opposite sides. Note the two shadows on each side of each baby's nose. In addition you are creating areas that get little or no light, i.e. between the babies' heads and in the nostrils. Initially, it's hard to put your finger on what makes crosslighting look not quite 'right' but once you start seeing it, you'll begin recognizing it more and more.

Ok, so you are probably asking: how should I light it so that I get even lighting on the subjects? The first place I would start is to place the main light to the side of the camera: 30 to 45 degrees to the side and about 18 inches above their eye level. For fill, place a light as close as you can to the camera axis. This way, you only get one shadow, the one from the main light. The fill light will only serve to fill in the shadows, but will not cause any additional shadows. If you are worried about having one baby more lit than the other baby because he is closer to the key light, you'll want to feather the light, which means, aim the key light more towards the baby that is farther from the light. Since lights will 'fall off' as you get farther from the point the light is pointed, there will be a point where both subjects are lit equally.

For an over-the-top example of crosslighting gone bad, check out this article. It is kind of amusing in a sad way. To me, it's pretty clear that it is the crosslighting that caused the problem.

I hope this was helpful. Let me know if you have any questions. You've got a great start on studio lighting and some great subjects!
Gilbert,
Your reply was so well thought out and helpful. I am very impressed that you would take so much time to help me. So to put the fill light at the camera axis, do you mean to put the fill light right behind the camera? How high would you put it?

I'll try the feathering technique you describe. It makes sense to me. Let's hope I can get it to work.

Thanks so much for this good advice. I'm going to read the article now.:biggrin:
 
Joined
May 6, 2005
Messages
262
Location
So. CA
Gilbert,
Your reply was so well thought out and helpful. I am very impressed that you would take so much time to help me. So to put the fill light at the camera axis, do you mean to put the fill light right behind the camera? How high would you put it?

I'll try the feathering technique you describe. It makes sense to me. Let's hope I can get it to work.

Thanks so much for this good advice. I'm going to read the article now.:biggrin:
Terri,

The fill light doesn't have to be right behind the camera although that is ok too. Just put it close to camera, roughly at the same level as the camera.

I'm glad I could help. A kind person took the time to help me out and while I am far from being an expert, the least I could do is to help others when I can.

If you have any other questions, feel free to PM me.
 
Joined
May 5, 2005
Messages
18,040
Location
Idaho
Terri,

Soooo Cute!!!! From my non- pro-gram-cam perspective it looks great! The toole works! It is great for "nakey" shots also. Don't get too attached to any one style...the babies will be constantly changing. Just remember each month try to focus on the "New" accomplishment the babies have made in development. That gives you a goal while shooting, and the captured shot will be a milestone memory!

I love wathcing these guys and sweet little Harlee grow!
Trish,
I love the title "non-pro-gram-cam". How funny. As a grandma you just want to get all the photos that the parents don't have the time or money to do. I sure wish I had more of my girls when they were little.

I love the idea of taking one studio type photo a month focusing on their accomplishments. That will give me a topic to think about for a month. We can look for props and ideas. Thanks for the guidance and help.
 
Joined
May 5, 2005
Messages
18,040
Location
Idaho
Excellent Terri - you need to go into the baby photography biz. You have this down pat! Very nice work.
Thanks for the encouragement. No business for me at this time though. Having a job and being a grandma to three new babies is enough for the time being. It's keeping me VERY busy helping my daughter with her three little ones. She really can't go anywhere without either someone going with her or someone babysitting the kids. During the afternoon (I work mornings) I usually do one or the other so she can run her errands.
 
Joined
May 5, 2005
Messages
18,040
Location
Idaho
Terri,

The fill light doesn't have to be right behind the camera although that is ok too. Just put it close to camera, roughly at the same level as the camera.

I'm glad I could help. A kind person took the time to help me out and while I am far from being an expert, the least I could do is to help others when I can.

If you have any other questions, feel free to PM me.
Thanks, Gilbert.
I'll give it a try next time, and then I'll let you see the results for critique.
 

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