Friday, May 2, 2008

Photography: Using avaliable light continued

Took me some time to find time to write an entry so here we go.

Some might not think of this as an important issue but i always take a special look at it when i m taking a photograph. Its the avaliable light.

Before shooting an image i ask myself the following questions:
-Where is the light coming from?
-What type of light is this (sun/lamps/cars/other light sources), if the sun is the afternoon/morning/midday/sunset/sunrise?
-How can i use the light that i see to my favor?
-Can i diffuse the light some how?
-Should i use a flash?

These are guideline question that work great for me, because when i have an answer to those questions is when i start to play around with the composition of the shot and working along the lines of light.

I like shooting still photography, but when it comes to taking pictures of bigger objects i always find myself in the same situation, i cannot use my IKEA lamps what do i do?

What i do then is i look outside the window to see what kind of weather it is? If its sunny thats great because that give me the liberty of moving my object to the shade if i want a more diffused light, or i can place it directly in the sun for some strong shadows, or i can just choose not to use it. Now it very important to be aware of what time of the day it is, and have some knowledge on the location of the sun at certain times during the day, because shooting the same location at 4 o'clock in the afternoon wont render the same results as to taking the image at 7 o'clock at night.

I have an example of this, with almost the same subject that i was taking a picture of:

The first image was taking during the morning hours, if i m not mistaken this photograph was taken about 9ish in the morning, and look at that lightning it really smooth no real harsh shadows. It looks very clean

morning espresso.

Now the second image, was taken at around 2 in the afternoon, the sun was shining really bright out side and i opted for taking the photo in the "shadow" of my house. Now look at this image its not as clean, as the other one its a bit darker, i did try to reflect back as much light i could on the object but it still render a rather dark shadow on the left hand side of the espresso cup.

espresso @18

Knowing where the light is coming from is going to help you alot!

Just wanted to share a quick tip: when in dough, and your thinking your going to get an overexposed image bump the EV down by 0.3 or 0.7. Its always easier to fix a underexposed image then fixing a overexposed image.

If you don't have a polarizing filter, and its really bright outside bring your EV down to -0.3 or -0.7 this will decrease the chance that you will overexpose an image.

All the best, have a great weekend!

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