How to learn?

Discussion in 'General flash photography, lighting, and technique' started by lbhs_rwb, Jul 20, 2007.

  1. lbhs_rwb

    lbhs_rwb

    365
    Oct 16, 2006
    Florida
    Ok..my lighting sucks. That's all there is to it. I have a weak strobe, that doesn't sync to my camera, but hopefully I'll soon get an sb-600/fong. The thing is, I don't know how to use them, to get non-flat photos. I'm 15..my photo teacher is cool, but I'm not sure how much help I can get out of her. There aren't any great local studio photographers, and I don't know what to do. No matter what I try, I can't learn lighting from reading..but I have no one to teach me. And experimenting/practicing hasn't turned out such great results. Where can I learn lighting? Are there any great video tutorials out there? Anything that can help me produce good pictures from indoors, when I can't/don't want to use available light?

    Any suggestions at all would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. A lot of good information here. Also, some have found this tutorial useful when first learning to use an SB800 or SB600. I used the Gary Fong diffuser when I first started with flash as well but as you point out the lighting is a little flat. That is pretty much the case with any diffuser until you can get the flash off of your camera. In the meantime, use natural light as the main and just learn to fill with your new SB600. Learning to be good at lighting subjects is a journey and not one you will master in a day or a week.
     
  3. lbhs_rwb

    lbhs_rwb

    365
    Oct 16, 2006
    Florida
    Thanks..My mom is ok with me getting it, I just have to convince my dad now. I'll make sure to use those when I get the flash.

    What I really want to do is stuff like Tim Tadder does. How hard is that?
     
  4. jcovert

    jcovert Guest

    I have an old Flash that I'm using a $15 optical trigger on. I notice when I try to use that Flash by itself, my D70 can make it fire, but the Flash does not show up in my picture (not syncing??)

    But when I use my SB800 and the old Flash together - it all works perfectly!

    Just saying...maybe when you get your SB600 the old Flash will work as expected as well, as it did in my setup. (And those old flashes are everywhere at pawn shops, so that + $15 optical trigger can add many more lights).

    Also, have you checked out http://strobist.blogspot.com yet? That's where I started really just because he made it so, so, easy. With pictures of everything etc.

    Good luck!
     
  5. jcovert

    jcovert Guest

    Hey man, they guy who runs Strobist is an old friend of that guy! And he actually did a post about him a few weeks ago! That lighting is very cool, and I suspect fairly hard, but his point was that this was just a regular guy who kept pushing the boundaries of lighting until he is where he is etc.

    That's definitely the sort of talent at least a few of us aspire to as well :wink:
     
  6. lbhs_rwb

    lbhs_rwb

    365
    Oct 16, 2006
    Florida
    Thanks for the tip. My problem is that that the strobe works the first time (through the cord) but then in order for it to fire again i have to unplug and replug it. It does work as a slave though.

    I've been to strobist a few times..and was reading around last night. The first time I found Tim's site was through strobist :]

    So I guess I'll keep reading that =]

    The thing is, I can look back at a shoot and think of plenty of stuff I could have done, but can never think of that on the spot.
     
  7. Scotty_R

    Scotty_R

    370
    Jan 1, 2006
    Virginia
    You can read and read and read, Micah, but you also need to practice. Try out the techniques that strobist talks about and soon it will become second nature to you. The more times you come home smacking yourself in the head about "what I could have done", the sooner you'll remember to do it while you're doing the shooting. Don't be frustrated...you're young and have lots of time to develop your own style. Tim Tatter didn't shoot images like you see on his site the first time he picked up a strobe and an umbrella. :wink:
     
  8. lbhs_rwb

    lbhs_rwb

    365
    Oct 16, 2006
    Florida
    How do youuu know?
     
  9. Scotty_R

    Scotty_R

    370
    Jan 1, 2006
    Virginia
    Because I've lived 40 years longer than you have and am old enough to realize what I didn't know when I was 15. Perhaps by the time you're 16 you'll recognize encouragement when it's offered and accept it for what it is. Then again, maybe not.
     
  10. lbhs_rwb

    lbhs_rwb

    365
    Oct 16, 2006
    Florida
    (t'was a joke)
     
  11. lbhs_rwb

    lbhs_rwb

    365
    Oct 16, 2006
    Florida
    Question: Is that a whole lot of USM I see in his shots?
     
  12. I would say that he has just the amount of sharpening that he wants, no more, no less.
     
  13. dabluedevil

    dabluedevil Guest

    In the few I think you are talking about, it is really an emphasis on the sweat of the bodies which indicates he uses very harsh light ot achieve that good glare/reflection. That's what I think of it anyway.
     
  14. lbhs_rwb

    lbhs_rwb

    365
    Oct 16, 2006
    Florida
    Oh, I didn't mean that he used too much, I like it. I was asking if that was usm.
     
  15. There are all sorts of plugin's and methods of doing sharpening with USM just being one of them. I never use USM as an example and it would be hard to say what Tim uses. For sure he uses some method of sharpening his images as most professionals and most others do. It is the nature of the beast with DSLR photography.
     
  16. lbhs_rwb

    lbhs_rwb

    365
    Oct 16, 2006
    Florida
  17. Little Cub

    Little Cub

    311
    Feb 13, 2007
    Vegas, baby!
    Hey Micah,

    Could the issue of your strobe and camera be a short? It seems that you having to remove and reattach the sync cord could mean a possible short or perhaps the connector/s are dirty. I know what you mean about wanting to get the lighting and sharpness of Tim. I agree with Joe when he says that Tim is using harsh light. You may also want to try aluminum foil as a strong reflector that creates great texture and keeps the crisp light. Keep trying, you'll get there.

    Little Cub
     
  18. lbhs_rwb

    lbhs_rwb

    365
    Oct 16, 2006
    Florida
    This is what I know:

    A regular speedlight works on it every time.
    I have tried two different hot shoe-pc adaptors
    I have cleaned the hot shoe
    What else can I try?

    Oh, and I already do that with the tin foil. I made a reflector out of a science fair display board, tin foil, and tape =]
     
  19. there's some editing on the files by the looks of it,. perhaps ask in the retouching forum https://www.nikoncafe.com/vforums/forumdisplay.php?f=130 - they should be able to help,. at a total guess there's some high pass sharpen in there somewhere

    Sil
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 15, 2017
  20. ffb2t

    ffb2t

    420
    Jan 16, 2006
    CA
    Start with reading strobist and getting the lighting right. After that it is learning and playing with photoshop to get the effects you want (it is not USM giving that effect). And finally, for the pics that you see on his site, I have a feeling he is using a bit more than an sb-600 although you will start to get there with the small strobes.
     
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.