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Portraits of a photographer

Discussion in 'People' started by Taylor, Jul 6, 2007.

  1. Taylor


    May 21, 2007
    Toronto, ON

    View attachment 104491


    SB-800 in a small softbox, hand held.

    I wish I had used a second strobe to light the background and bring some more separation between the subject and the shadows, but I was using my 2nd SB-800 as a commander. I can't wait for my SU-800 to arrive!
  2. sharkync

    sharkync Guest

    Taylor - I find these type of shots are difficult to pull off. The transition from highlight to shadow is tricky. Of the three, I prefer the first - but I would like to see the shadow detail lifted. Maybe a slight ceiling bounce (1/32 or so) camera right.

    I wish I could be of more help but i always struggle with this lighting balance. Maybe use a neutral density filter sideways?
  3. Taylor


    May 21, 2007
    Toronto, ON
    Thanks for your comments Jack! Do you mean the transition across his face? Or between the subject and the background?

    I wasn't really looking to do even lighting for these ones. I think the shadows across his face add more dimensionality to the images and brings out the facial structure a lot more than flat even lighting.
  4. It's a matter of subject and style. Personally, I like very high ratio of main to fill for masculine subjects...


    and a lower ratio for ladies and children.

    View attachment 104493

    Two SB800s and an SU800 make a heavenly trio :biggrin.
  5. Taylor


    May 21, 2007
    Toronto, ON
    Yeah, it totally depends on the style. I like shooting more dramatic portraits I suppose.

    Did you use umbrellas for those portraits Frank? The lighting seems quite diffuse.
  6. I shot through a hand-held 32" umbrella for the first one, and used a 40" brolly box raised to 7 feet on a light stand for the second one.
  7. I like #2 the best out of the 3. Even though little fill would make huge diffrence to it imo.

    Sure dramatic lightning is a matter of taste, you could also argue that bad ligthing is a matter of taste.

    What dosent work for me in images like this (especially #1) is that the lightning says one thing and the subjects expression another.
  8. Taylor


    May 21, 2007
    Toronto, ON
    Thanks for the comments Paul. I see your point how the lighting wouldn't work for all situations. It produces a very simple image that I seem to like. Maybe it reminds me a bit of film noir, and it certainly isn't a technically perfect image like people have said.

    Next time I'll try using a white board to fill in the shadows a bit more. I don't think using a second light will have the same kind of soft lighting effect that I'd want.

    Granted, these photos weren't very well planned (hand held softbox and I forgot the flash bracket too, so I could do better in that department :smile:)  and I'm sure if I had the time I could produce something much better.

    Thanks for all the comments, it's really helpful to hear what other people think!
  9. Nice pics.

    You're gonna love the SU-800 with your two SB-800s, they work great together
  10. Taylor


    May 21, 2007
    Toronto, ON
    Thanks Phil!
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