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Old 04-22-2012, 02:44 PM #85
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Quote:
Originally Posted by therealmr View Post
stack exposures for increased DOF [crisp beer?]
pour beer last to get good froth
To add-
Reflections are distracting. Diffuse some light.
Better focal plane if not stacking exposures.



therealmr, Fain, anyone? Need some advice

A couple months ago I shot a friends wedding and the reception was pretty challenging. Had 2 different ceilings. One was tall, pitched like an a-frame with glossed and heavy orange stained wood. It cast an extremely unpleasant orange on everything. The other ceiling extremely short and white. It was impossible to get anything seamless between them using bounced lighting as I was constantly adjusting. Didn't like the natural light look as the room was surrounded by windows on 2 sides making it heavily backlit but settled with it anyway.



I feel like I'm missing a crucial step here in my understanding of light. Any advice on effectively using a speedlight in this situation? Or anything in general to prevent these blow outs? Just suck it up and use gary fong's on camera plastic?

This was the bounced lighting I was going for but couldn't get seamless. Some weird color balance going on too.
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Old 04-22-2012, 03:19 PM #86
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1st image: [soapbox, no advice] this is the type of shooting situation that makes me glad I shoot film; the range of light is too much for a digital camera to handle in what i see as a pleasing way. [/soapbox] speedlight for fill? i don't shoot with them though so i'm weary giving you specific advice other than "sure, go for it next time and see if you like it better!"

2nd image: you have incandescent light bouncing off of wood, giving a super warm color. Then you have daylight coming in, which is essentially the "opposite" of that. This is what happens in real life, and your color PP in the second image is a completely acceptable means of dealing with the situation. minus the facial expression, it's solid.
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Old 04-22-2012, 05:43 PM #87
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For #1 I'd say that a speedlight isn't super necessary. Your lighting as-is isn't horrible, it's just natural. If you wanted to get super fancy than a speedlight with softbox could get ya there. Keeping the iso down definitely helps, I've always found that high iso blows highlights really easily, even if the exposure is technically correct.

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2nd image: you have incandescent light bouncing off of wood, giving a super warm color. Then you have daylight coming in, which is essentially the "opposite" of that. This is what happens in real life, and your color PP in the second image is a completely acceptable means of dealing with the situation. minus the facial expression, it's solid.
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Old 04-22-2012, 08:11 PM #88
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Old 04-22-2012, 11:00 PM #89
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Quote:
Originally Posted by therealmr View Post
1st image: [soapbox, no advice] this is the type of shooting situation that makes me glad I shoot film; the range of light is too much for a digital camera to handle in what i see as a pleasing way. [/soapbox] speedlight for fill? i don't shoot with them though so i'm weary giving you specific advice other than "sure, go for it next time and see if you like it better!"

2nd image: you have incandescent light bouncing off of wood, giving a super warm color. Then you have daylight coming in, which is essentially the "opposite" of that. This is what happens in real life, and your color PP in the second image is a completely acceptable means of dealing with the situation. minus the facial expression, it's solid.
Quote:
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For #1 I'd say that a speedlight isn't super necessary. Your lighting as-is isn't horrible, it's just natural. If you wanted to get super fancy than a speedlight with softbox could get ya there. Keeping the iso down definitely helps, I've always found that high iso blows highlights really easily, even if the exposure is technically correct.


.
. Basically this. It's exactly what I would do.

#1. There is nothing I would really do different. You could do something different and that would be to meter for the windows and set that in manual, ettl fill flash from a speedlight. But the dynamic range is so wide I have a hard time believing you could flash it with enough power. And even if you do you are going to have almost direct flash falloff to the people behind the subject. So, don't really change anything. The only thing I would suggest is that if you are able to bounce light off a white ceiling that isn't too high then remote it if you do want the view out the windows. However, you will be limited to the shutter limitation of your camera (1/250th) which means you can't shoot at a more open aperture to make the clutter of the BG to blur out (the other people/heads/etc.). So you're sorta up a creek. Again, I'd do the same as you and expose for the shadow side of people opposite the windows and let em blow out.

#2. Same thing that eric said. Two different light sources so not much you can do. What do you mean by seamless? Do you mean the white blowout on the bride and the darkness of the groom? That's just going to happen unless you're able to have a perfect venue to setup lighting in at the right spot with the ability to have the time to do a meter reading beforehand. The last wedding I shot I had this problem. It was a dark church with natural lighting coming through the windows and green around everywhere. I did some bouncing of the light and the bride was overexposed (because light wasn't bouncing off of her all that much so it the light was too bright). I eventually said forget it and just shot at 2.8 and 1.8 without flash. When I was able to have a bit more light and control I used my flash in bounce but shot in manual so that the light only filled a smidge with ambient doing most of the work. I'll post some below on my troubles.

Don't mind the watermark. It's on my website for ordering:

Can't expose for the people and window light because the inside of the venue is dark? Blow the windows out unless you have time to set up a thought out lighting source with softboxes. I was shooting family with this time too so no way to do it.


I could have used a flash in this scene but I would get reflections off of stuff and I'd rather not have that. So I blew out the BG:


I actually tried to use a flash here to begin with (before she through it) but I just changed my mind just before she did and I'm glad I did. She was over-exposed dress wise and behind her there was a lot of light fall off. With needing above 1/200 or so I just bumped to ISO 3200, shot 2.8, and got 1/320. With that focal length I knew I had the DOF I needed anyway. So instead of trying to mix all those colors (these windows were stained glass), I just used the overall color of the room (crappy brown/greenish) to blend together instead of mixing two. Now, there is a time when a flash is needed, I just think that fast glass/letting things blow out is just as easy and can add more subject isolation and make it simple.



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Old 04-23-2012, 01:23 AM #90
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Quote:
Originally Posted by therealmr View Post
1st image: [soapbox, no advice] this is the type of shooting situation that makes me glad I shoot film; the range of light is too much for a digital camera to handle in what i see as a pleasing way. [/soapbox] speedlight for fill? i don't shoot with them though so i'm weary giving you specific advice other than "sure, go for it next time and see if you like it better!"

2nd image: you have incandescent light bouncing off of wood, giving a super warm color. Then you have daylight coming in, which is essentially the "opposite" of that. This is what happens in real life, and your color PP in the second image is a completely acceptable means of dealing with the situation. minus the facial expression, it's solid.
I don't think you have a bigger fan when it comes to your work and Greg's work. I think about trying to go back to film but I'm hesitant as I rely heavily on instant trial and error. The second photo was an example of the look I was trying to achieve but couldn't get seamless to the next photo because of my changing location and subsequent changing location of where I was trying to bounce the light (either tall orange pitched ceiling, or short white ceiling).


James- Here I'm just trying to achieve a look and hopefully break a challenge. I hear you about the high ISO, problem is this was indoors and poorly lit. I'll try the softbox idea as I'm warming to the on camera flash look some people are getting away with.


Fain- Haha I framed my question around those photos of yours I happened to find on your site last night but reworded it hoping to solicit more opinions. Lol very similar scenarios. Was wondering if any were bounced too.

The blown out look is just not appealing to me when it comes to weddings and when it's pervasive. I don't do a lot of them, only second shoot and sometimes for friends, but the few I do I try to learn and get better at. I guess in the majority of situations I wouldn't be too afraid of flash fall off as in my opinion it would substitute for any lack of DOF in the background and provide at least some isolation with blacks/shadows. The lack of power though you're right. And by seamless (probably a better word for it) I mean similar color balance for if and when correcting white balance. Bouncing off a green wall then a red wall doesn't produce a similar color balance or seamless photos for a set.

http://fainphoto.zenfolio.com/acosta...bc60#h1fddbc60
http://fainphoto.zenfolio.com/acosta...40e3#h17f440e3

Would you do anything different if you could re-shoot those photos? Zero limitations except for same location and you couldn't direct the bride and groom.



Thanks guys!
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Old 04-23-2012, 01:39 AM #91
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I'm generally really disappointed by my results when I try to balance lighting in the above cases. It usually comes out looking really cheap and artificial. When it does work, the results are arguably worse than just leaving the windows completely blown:
[I either bounced or used a lightsphere]
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Old 04-23-2012, 02:09 AM #92
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@ full power? Pretty convincing then I'd have to go off camera or scrap this, whatever it is, look i'm going for.

Thanks!
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Old 04-23-2012, 09:22 AM #93
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Quote:
Originally Posted by potato View Post
To add-
Reflections are distracting. Diffuse some light.
Better focal plane if not stacking exposures.

Quote:
Originally Posted by therealmr View Post
stack exposures for increased DOF [crisp beer?]
pour beer last to get good froth
Thanks for the feedback
I'll try stacking exposures for the next one.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cmizzle View Post
What was your f/stop you were shooting at?
f/2.8 I believe (on a 55mm f/1.2). I only have a 1k Fresnel for lighting. I'm also shooting with a Gh2, so I try to avoid higher shooting at a higher ISO. I'm probably a little too cautious about it though.
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Old 04-23-2012, 10:44 PM #94
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first time just playin around... obvi settings are a little off but was kinda cool to get the idea down
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Old 04-24-2012, 12:00 AM #95
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Quote:
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http://fainphoto.zenfolio.com/acosta...bc60#h1fddbc60
http://fainphoto.zenfolio.com/acosta...40e3#h17f440e3

Would you do anything different if you could re-shoot those photos? Zero limitations except for same location and you couldn't direct the bride and groom.
Zero limitations? Yeah. They were pretty cool windows and stained glass. Here's a pick of the room I had to work with:



Chairs filled the area before I got there, then the tables went up. I asked the bride if she wanted getting ready photos but they just got ready in the bathroom so she wasn't interested. If I were to setup lights it would be in the walk way from the downstairs to the upstairs for the windows in the back. And up front chairs were in the way. I *couldn't* do it any different.

I did do some bouncing but see the green ceiling? Brownish walls and weird rainbow reflections on the floor? Putting in white light for that room made it look really weird. Especially in contrasty situations. Once I got a couple of photos like this I ditched the flash:
[IMG]
IMG_5427 by Tim Fain, on Flickr[/IMG]


But for NO limitations I would. I'd clear out about a 5-10 foot section of chairs/tables and setup a large softbox camera right, a small softbox camera left, and then a bare flash behind them that is hidden by their bodies. Then I would take a reading of the windows to see where the aperture was with a 1/250th shutter. I'd use that and adjust to where I underexpose the windows by 1/3rd - 1 stop and then expose the bride and groom accordingly. They'd pop, the windows would have color as well as spreading some of that light around but it'd be controlled. It'd be an awesome photo.

However, that's ideal. And I always tell the bride and groom that I have them contracted for a 120 minute window for photos before and after the ceremony. If they don't allow me to do it because they are doing other things then they get what they get.


However, I think that I'm going to start refusing to take clients unless they allow me to spend that time with them. I know I can take some awesome photos such as stuff like this (not that it's especially awesome. It's just strobed daylight photo and still blown in the BG. But this photo is better than A LOT of photography in my area):



I just need the time.

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Old 04-24-2012, 03:19 AM #96
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Skin tones are killing me right now. What about this is off (besides the focal point )?
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Old 04-24-2012, 12:25 PM #97
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Here's a few of what I got on a trip to Austin for Marley Fest this past weekend. Would love some C&C:


Windows by Orange Imaging, on Flickr


Love & Time by Orange Imaging, on Flickr


Arthouse Sculpture by Orange Imaging, on Flickr


Jacy by Orange Imaging, on Flickr


Self by Orange Imaging, on Flickr
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Old 04-24-2012, 01:51 PM #98
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Skin tones are killing me right now. What about this is off (besides the focal point )?
Skin tones don't look that bad to me, maybe warm the shadows a bit to get rid of that slight blue cast on the kid's arms (maybe I'm the only one that sees it) but nothing super obviously out of place.
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Old 04-25-2012, 10:10 PM #99
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Old 04-26-2012, 12:14 AM #100
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great shot martin.

Here's a few from last week.







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Old 04-26-2012, 04:58 PM #101
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Old 04-26-2012, 08:44 PM #102
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Old 04-26-2012, 10:46 PM #103
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my first attempt at light painting. It was a rushed shot so Im kinda eh on the final outcome. I did a lot in post, but I feel like a lot more could be done to make it a tad easier on the eyes.

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Old 04-26-2012, 11:17 PM #104
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just send it to nate
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Old 04-27-2012, 01:59 PM #105
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my first attempt at light painting. It was a rushed shot so Im kinda eh on the final outcome. I did a lot in post, but I feel like a lot more could be done to make it a tad easier on the eyes.

IMG]http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7203/7117590137_c3219779e4_c.jpg[/IMG]
A tad more fill light and some sharper spec hits would help I think. The body shape gets a little lost around the front quarter panel and driver's door. Same goes for the rear quarter panel. Not a bad start though, you did a good job of making the lighting smooth and subtle, very clean.
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