Friday, March 27, 2009

Light Fun....

I once again find myself wishing I could be out shooting with a model other than myself.... but the weather just hasn't gotten to the point that people really enjoy being outside getting their picture taken. I recently purchased a Wescott 50" Soft Box & an Alien Bee 1600 Studio Light however and have been dying to get out and shoot a bit with both. The Wescott 50" box is a huge, soft light modifier and I am able to use the AB 1600 or a 580 EX II flash unit with this set up. The 580 rig is nice because it allows me to go totally wire less and very mobile where the AB needs AC power to run it. They do make portable power units for these lights, so I will have to look into that very soon so that I will be able to take the AB on location shoots and not have to worry about running a 50 ft power cord to the unit.

Okay, okay, who cares about all this tech stuff right? Get to the pictures....
So in this first shot, you will see just the AB 1600 in the 50" box lit from the subjects left at 1/4 power. The box is only about 1 ft away from the subject and the subject is only about 1 ft from the back wall which is pure white. Now here is some more tech data that will bore you to death I'm sure, but I feel I need to explain why I am doing what I'm doing.... Being that I am shooting alone it is a little difficult to get the focus perfect so what I did to make it a little more simple was to use the smallest aperture I could, F16 in this case on my 50mm 1.4 lens. This basically makes everything in focus when you set your lens to infinity in manual focus. Thus my shutter was at 1/30th and ISO was at 400.

Here is the shot....

You can see what a nice soft affect this light has on your subject creating a warm yet detailed look. There does seem to be a bit of a color cast from the bright orange jacket our subject is wearing.....

In the next set up, we added a 580 EX II to the scene and placed it directly behind the subject to basically nuke the white back ground behind him. This shot was done at F16 1/40th and ISO 250. Being I threw in another light, I needed to back off the ISO to get the exposure right.

Ok, so enough with the studio shots, the rain has let up for a minute, the sun is out and the sky is blue. Lets take it outside.... I switched the light in the soft box over to the 580EX II so that I could go mobile and moved all the gear just outside my studio. I love the lot my home/studio is on, I can walk right out the door and be in a nice wooded setting with endless shooting opportunities.... With that here is the next shot.

The picture on the left was done with the Soft Box and the 580 set to full power. Camera was set to F10 1/40th ISO 250. The shot on the right was Exactly the same set up only without the lighting. In the next and final shot, you will see that by raising the shutter to 1/250th we were able to cut the amount of natural light in the scene and bring out the blue sky keeping all the other setting the same.

Went for a little more of a Rembrandt look in this shot, but I really wanted to bring out the blue sky in the back ground.

Well, thanks for dropping by to check out the blog.... I promise over the next few months the posts will get much more interesting and geared toward my true passion in photography.... Weddings! I have a couple engagement shoots coming up soon so stop back to check those out!

Hope to hear some feed back from you all so please feel free to leave your comments!

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