the Film Noir snoot is a telescopic snoot that has a built-in slot for GOBOs which create film noir effects. I suspect that its prime material is cereal box cardboard fitted with black straws for slides and stoppers. Click to continue ›
One of my favorite ways to shoot is with accented rim lights. And while I love the look this kind of light produces there is a bit of a trickery to setting those lights up.
The reason is that back lights create flare.
A while back David Hobby had a post about fitting a monoblock with a cold shoe. I thought it was a pretty clever hack for mounting a pocket wizard on your strobe. It provided for a firmer, nicer strobe-to-pw attachment than the dangling lanyard mount that I use. Plus you got the bonus of better radio perception with the antenna being 100% upright.
We are big fans of lighting cheat sheets, ever since with pulled our first one, featuring my former boss, which shows 24 positions of lighting for portraits. (Which was later nuked with a software creating a similar chart with 72 lighting positions using a 3d head scan from Infinite Realities).
Interestingly enough, a similar scan by IR was used to create the Virtual Lighting Studio an interactive chart that you can plug lots of lights into and position them anywhere. So as long as you don't really care about expressions, hair or human interaction, you can light and shoot at the comfort of your living room. (Or make your mega lighting card cheat sheet)
Happy Easter/Passover everyone! I thought that this little video is a good fit for today, as the main character here is the Egg (no offense, Joe).
In this short video Joe Edelman uses an egg to explain a bit about portraiture lighting by having a single source of light move over an egg. It is kinda like our portrait lighting cheat sheet card, only in video.
Polarizer filters can be used to enhance contrast and saturation in landscape photography and reduce reflections or glare on shiny surfaces such as water. The effect is maximized by aligning the polarizer on the camera so that the polarizing direction is perpendicular to that of the light you want to block.
On a bright day it works best if you are in a 90 degrees angle to the sun, but there will always be some light reflected by the surrounding or diffused by clouds which still reduce the effect. (See the differnce between the right and left sides of the image below)
This article shows how a polarizing filter for a flash allows to make use of the effect with artificial light. Some subjects will look gorgeous while others may be rendered in an odd way but it's certainly fun playing with the effect and you can still vary the level by turning your filter on the lens. In a nutshell, we are going to polerize the light coming from the strobe to better control its specular higlights.
Every lightsource could be modified to emmit polarized light. But some devices (such as displays and some lasers) already emmit polarized light. See the images below for examle images illuminated with an iPad.
We are big fans of home made lighting (see our studio in action here). I am more of a CFL kind of guy, and when I got our video studio up, I opted up for those small compacts florescents. But uber talent Joe Edelman shows that great results can be had with the old school florescents as well.
Joe build anything with simple florescents, from strip lights, to power banks and crazy ring lightish contractions. Of course, being a kick ass photographer does not hurt as well.
Using mostly 2 light fixtures mounted on a rail and 40 Watts florescents to set up his lights, Joe's photography makes a hell of a point that photographs are not about expensive gear (take that KinoFlo). How-to video and sample imagery after the jump Click to continue ›
I love using continuous light sources. At first it was all about the fact that unlike strobes, I could see the light at all time and not only on shutter press. As the time went by, this became even more relevant as continuous lights can be used for video as well.
This tutorial was sent by photographer Lyle Ball and it shows how to make a light fixture that resembles the awesome Spiderlite TD5. It uses CFLs for light, which is both economic and not all that cold. If you are going the same route, make sure to use a full spectrum CFL - they may be a bit more pricey, but the results from the lower end bulbs are just, well... lower end. Click to continue ›
Photographer Alex Sharifi just sent me this quick tip about using PVC 4 ways Tee to create a multi-strobe adapter.
Those are great if you need power for light sucking devices like the Westcott Big Mama.
Here are two pictures to explain the build.
- 4 ways PVC Tee
- Cold shoes
- 1/4-20 bolts
- PVC caps
- Screw the cold shoe through the PVC cap
- Glue PVC cap to 4 ways tee
- Drill a hold for umbrella
- Rinse and repeat 4 times
There you have it. Your very own 4 ways strobe bracket. Click to continue ›
The awesome Benjamin Von Wong is here on a visit and we gave my new video setup a quick run.
Since Ben comes from Canada all his devices has weird Canadian no good plugs. The solution, use one all-in-one pongs adapter and a "bought at home country" power bar. This configuration has a small foot print and can be reused around the world.
(Side note: expect more videos here, one of the first ones will be on how to create that "white" look on a budget). Click to continue ›