The system began a few years ago when I needed more light stands and, like most DIY types, didn’t want to pay a lot for them. I happened to have a lot of 3/4″ PVC and 1/2″ metal conduit laying around so I started experimenting. My goal was to come as close as I could to the functions of a retail light stand. The basic stand fits the bill except for the fact that the legs don’t collapse. Since this was a DIY project I wasn’t limited to manufacturer’s accessories. I could dream up as many different add-ons as I wanted. The simple stand soon grew into a complete light support system.
If you’re a photographer, chances are that someone has bought you a lens mug so far. Or maybe you already have a few of those (I know I do). We all know more than one lens mug is just too much – so why not repurpose it? In this video, Dave Knop a.k.a. Knoptop will show you how to turn a lens mug into a desk lamp. It’s simple to make and it looks pretty neat!
When it comes to lighting effects for photography, only your imagination is the limit. In this video, Derrick Freske will show you five tricks that require nothing but your smartphone flashlight as the light source. They’re simple and cheap, but they can give many creative effects to your images.
I have no idea where I first heard this, but it’s extremely true: “the main difference between painting and photography is that the painters need to work hard to put things into their images, whereas photographers have to work hard to take things out of their images.” Painters start with a blank canvas, and every single thing that ends up in the final piece of art is a result of careful craftsmanship, years of hard-earned skill, and raw intention. The photographer’s canvas, on the other hand, is all of the world’s visual chaos, and he or she must deploy an equivalent amount of craftsmanship, skill, and intention to weed out all the fluff.
Light made big news when they announced the L16 back in 2015. A crazy handheld camera that was actually 16 cameras in one. Not much bigger than a smartphone it threatened the end of DSLRs. The sample images looked very impressive, but when it got into peoples hands, they were entirely underwhelmed. It didn’t kill DSLRs.
But people did take notice. People at companies like Leica Camera AG and SoftBank Vision Fund, who have now invested $121 million in the unconventional camera company. It’s an interesting, but not an illogical investment for Leica. The merging of their hardware knowhow and Light’s software expertise could be a perfect combination.
Remember Light L16, a weird-looking camera with 16 lenses? The same company has recently revealed that they plan to develop a smartphone with nine cameras. Yup, you read it well – nine cameras. Just like their L16 camera, the smartphone will also stitch multiple photos into a single large one, producing a 64MP image.
The choice for shooting hard vs soft light is quite an easy one for many people. But if you don’t understand what the difference is, what difference it makes to your subject, or how to create it, soft light can be a bit of a mystery. Soft light is fantastic for portraits, though. It’s particularly flattering, especially to ladies, and isn’t that difficult to understand.
This video from Caleb Pike at DSLR Video Shooter walks us through how to get it and why we need it. Caleb uses his lights for video, although the principles are exactly the same for photography, too.
Many portrait photographers obsess about the clothes their subjects wear on a shoot. They’re often asked to avoid certain colours, or patterns, or given a colour scheme to try and follow. But what about the photographer’s clothes? And this isn’t a matter of how professional you look in front of your clients. It’s all about the light that reflects off you and back toward your subject.
In this short video from the Koldunov Brothers, we see a practical demonstration of two different scenarios. The first shows the impact of our subject wearing differently coloured clothes and how it reflects off their skin. The second shows how the photographer wearing clothes of varying colour and brightness can present on the subject and affect the final image.
And no, the Moon Terminator is nothing to do with Arnold. The “terminator” in this case is the line between the lit and dark sides of the moon. During those times when the moon and the sun are in the sky together, there’s something odd about it. The line defining the lit side of the moon doesn’t line up with the sun, the thing that’s lighting it.
This video from YouTuber Vsauce attempts to explain the phenomenon of the Moon Terminator illusion. A camera is used to explain some of the various principles involved. It’s well worth watching, as it also goes some way towards also explaining some of the issues photographers hit regularly. Understanding the causes of them can help us to resolve them.