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L102: Unit 1.1 - the first assignment!

Discussion in 'General flash photography, lighting, and technique' started by Uncle Frank, Jun 18, 2007.

  1. We've got homework!


    Post your samples and your observations on this thread, and maybe we can get a good conversation going.
  2. I brought my camera, lightstand, and flash to the gym, and found a nice lady who was willing to help me out with this assignment. The flash was positioned at ~6 feet height at camera right, ~45 degrees off line. I used manual settings for the flash and the camera, to keep a level playing field.

    Head-on shot

    Side shot
    View attachment 101337


    My model appeared happier when she didn't have to look at me :rolleyes:  .
    The side shadow was much smaller from the side.
    Everything way "flatter" from the side. That's easiest to see in the way the wall was rendered.

    Feel free to point out anything you think I missed.

    I took an extra shot to give to the model in thanks for her help. It was taken from the front using the same single light setup, but in ttl mode. I did some editing on it, and used Greg's Powder Skin Softener action.

    View attachment 101338
  3. Taylor


    May 21, 2007
    Toronto, ON
    Here are my strobist-type photos from this Sunday:


    View attachment 101340

    Both are a single SB-800 angled up towards the face, triggered by a SB-800 commander from my camera. Levels and exposure adjusted in photoshop. Will post more later.
  4. Those are interesting, Taylor, but they don't seem to address the homework assignment for Lighting 102: Unit 1.1. Or am I missing something?
  5. Isn't the model supposed to stay still and the flash move from "on axis" to "at 45 degrees". You seem to have left the flash alone and moved the model from "face on" to "45 degrees". :) 

  6. Frank,

    Those kinds of lighting methods are way too basic, IMO. A Two, Three or Four light setup might be of greater interest. Don't you think?
  7. Taylor


    May 21, 2007
    Toronto, ON
    Yeah, sorry Uncle Frank they weren't done for homework. I have a few more that are more 45' shots that haven't been edited yet, which I happened to do before reading the assignment anyway.
  8. genehsu


    Apr 15, 2007
    The purpose of this assignment is "Position/Angle," so we're supposed to see what happens if you vary the angle of the light without changing anything else. It's supposed to help you visualize how this variable works. Adding more lights only confuse the matter.
  9. I don't think so. The model and flash are fixed. The photographer/camera do the moving. Here's the instructions:

    Try a shot with the light at about 45 degrees to one side. Have your subject look directly into the camera. (Or have your inanimate object continue to be inanimate.) Now, keeping the subject looking in the same direction, walk over to your light and shoot the subject from the perspective of the light.
  10. OOPs, Sorry. I miss read it or perhaps I decided what it said before I'd finished reading. :redface:

  11. cwilt


    Apr 24, 2005
    Denver, CO

    I agree with your interpitation of the instructions.

    About your images....
    I am not at home on my calibrated monitors but it seems like your ratio between flash and ambient was large. Curious why you did that, if I am seeing it correctly?

    I notice a difference in the shape of the subjects face and space between her and the wall.

    If time permits tonight I will try to nail down my normal subject and snap a few.
  12. The harsh ratio was intentional, Charles. I wanted to emphasize the differences between the flash-over-camera shot and the quartering flash shot. If you look at the samples in lesson 1.1, you'll see Dave used very high ratios as well.
  13. cwilt


    Apr 24, 2005
    Denver, CO
    I can understand that, but wanted to make sure I understood your intent.:wink: Strobist must be busy. Been trying to view it, off an on, since your post here.
  14. Let's see if I can link one of Dave's examples.

  15. [​IMG]

    well it was mostly at a 45 degree angle, and pointed down a bit, and I cheated and used a fill light. Just fyi, I didn't go any touching up on her face, or really on the image other than some curves to get the brightness/contrast where I wanted it.

    I had two clients here to please...
    1) my friend for letting me use his space - for that I needed speaker pics
    2) my friend who needed these for her fashion show - for that I had to put up with that feather stuff on the model
  16. genehsu


    Apr 15, 2007
    Here's my take #1: Varying the position of the light while keeping the subject and camera (fairly) static. I used the strobe on a stick technique with optical slave and a remote release so I could be the victim.


    ISO 200, 1/500, 50mm, f/5.6, SB-80DX @ 1/64, 50mm zoom, ~5'.
    Varying height and angle of flash.

    Yes, the picture quality is sub-par, but what we're supposed to notice in this exercise is the variation in light and shadows. What I notice is my body tilting this way and that as I try to hold the strobe on a stick in different positions.

    Here's a shot of the strobe on a stick:


    Again, the picture quality is sub-par, but you get the idea. SB-80DX in optical slave mode, mounted on a tilt mount on a monopod. The on-camera flash trigger is blocked by an SG3-IR attachment (you can probably use some red gels or exposed film to do the same) so that its light won't actually contribute to the picture. The cat decided to visit after I finished flashing.
  17. Ray C.

    Ray C.

    Nov 7, 2005
    Kudos to genehsu for apparently being the only one of us who actually read Dave's entire assignment. :wink:

    Lighting 102 isn't a photo contest, its about learning to see and use light. Granted, for those of us who have been doing the off camera flash thing for a while, this exercise may seem a bit too basic...but it's not. There's a method to the madness. For those just starting, this is a great exercise.

    One thing that some may have overlooked:

    "Shoot in a normally lit, indoor room. Set your ASA on 200 and your camera at your normal max synch speed. For most of you, this will be somewhere between 1/125th and 1/500th. Set your aperture on f/5.6"

    This is actually important for the purpose of this exercise and probably alot of Dave's exercises...as you want your flash(s) to be the only source of light, so you can see exactly the effect the flash will have on the photo.

    Anyway, here's a few, straight out of the camera. Again, just a lighting demo.

    ISO 200, 1/500sec @ f/6.3, SB-800 straight-on @1/16 power on light stand 5ft from subject, triggered by Pocket Wizard

    ISO 200, 1/500sec @ f/6.3, SB-800 45º angle @ 1/16 power on light stand 5ft from subject, triggered by Pocket Wizard

    ISO 200, 1/500sec @ f/6.3, SB-800 @1/16 power on light stand 5ft from subject, triggered by Pocket Wizard, shot from position of light

    Couple of tips/observations:

    Get in the habit of shooting manual on your flashes, the results are more consistent and predictable.

    If you have Pocket Wizards, ebay triggers, etc....use them. This way you're forced to use manual.
  18. Dayo


    May 1, 2006
    575714414_71c1a46dd3. View attachment 101345

    My assignment. Couldn't organise a trip to space to shoot the earth so made do with this.
  19. Dayo


    May 1, 2006
    Glad the clients were pleased but I don't get how this relates to the L102 assignment.
  20. I think the confusion arises because there are multiple homework assignments lumped under Unit 1.1, but I think only 1 entailed documenting results with pics that could be discussed on the strobist Filckr site.

    Lighting angles (no documentation required)
    Note: that's the only part that Gene addresssed.

    Manual exposure: (no documentation required)
    I think you misinterpreted this part, Ray, when you said, "This is actually important for the purpose of this exercise and probably alot of Dave's exercises...as you want your flash(s) to be the only source of light, so you can see exactly the effect the flash will have on the photo."

    because the Strobist went on to say...

    The view from the front vs. from the strobe (documentation required)
    That's the assignment I addressed... and you did, too.

    Don't forget the su800. It has an advantage over PWs and ebay triggers... you can use your remotes in manual, and change their power settings without having to do so on the flash's body.

    Hey, I see you were able to con your son into posing again. Good work!
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