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  1. 1. Photography 101 Lighting Basics
  2. 2. LIGHTING <ul><li>DIRECTION AND ITS EFFECTES </li></ul><ul><li>DEGREE OF DIFFUSION </li></ul><ul><li>OVERCAST LIGHTING </li></ul><ul><li>QUALITY OF LIGHT </li></ul><ul><li>BASIC FLASH TECHNIQUES </li></ul>
  3. 3. Direction of Light <ul><li>With the exception of completely diffused light, light casts shadows over a scene which can emphasize texture and depth or diminish them </li></ul><ul><li>The main source of light (the sun, a bright window, or flash) will illuminate the side nearest the light and cast shadows on the opposite side </li></ul>
  4. 4. Direction of Light cont… <ul><li>When looking at the lighting on a scene, you need to take into account the direction the light is coming from and also its relation to the camera (will the shadows be visible to the viewer?) </li></ul>
  5. 5. Direction of Light cont… <ul><li>Three different kinds of lighting are defined as front , side and back lighting </li></ul><ul><li>Front lighting is often applied by beginners because it is “safe” and will illuminate the scene evenly, but this can create flat, less interesting photographs </li></ul>
  6. 6. Direction of Light cont… <ul><li>Side lighting can emphasize texture and adds depth to your photographs </li></ul><ul><li>Back lighting can create dramatic silhouettes against a bright background </li></ul>
  7. 9. Direction of Light cont… <ul><li>This is not to say that front lighting should be avoided, or that side or back lighting will enhance every scene </li></ul><ul><li>Look at the scene you are photographing and look for a way to use the light in an interesting way </li></ul>
  8. 10. Direction of Light cont… <ul><li>Can you move the subject relative to the light, or move the light to another position? </li></ul><ul><li>Outdoors, you have little control in moving the light source except for waiting for another time of day </li></ul>
  9. 11. Degree of Diffusion <ul><li>Next to direction, the most important characteristic of lighting is its degree of diffusion </li></ul><ul><li>When people refer to the quality of light, they usually mean its degree of diffusion </li></ul>
  10. 12. Degree of Diffusion Direct Light <ul><li>Direct light creates hard edged, dark shadows, striking the subject all from one direction </li></ul><ul><li>The smaller the light (relative to the size of the subject) or the farther the light is from the subject, the sharper and darker the shadows will be </li></ul>
  11. 13. Degree of Diffusion Direct Light cont… <ul><li>A spotlight is a good example of direct lighting. Think of a performer on stage in a single spotlight. The highlight areas are very bright and the shadows are very hard edged and dark. </li></ul>
  12. 14. Degree of Diffusion Direct Light cont… <ul><li>The sun on a clear day is another source of direct light. Because of its distance to the earth, it is a small source in a large sky and causes hard, dark shadows as well. </li></ul>
  13. 15. Degree of Diffusion Direct Light cont…
  14. 18. Degree of Diffusion Diffused Light <ul><li>When the suns rays are scattered in many directions by clouds or an overcast day, then it is directional- diffused or even fully diffused </li></ul><ul><li>Diffused light scatters onto the subject in many directions and can show no direction of a source </li></ul>
  15. 20. Degree of Diffusion Diffused Light cont… <ul><li>Diffused light appears to surround the subject and come in from all directions causing shadows to be relatively light and their edges to be indistinct </li></ul>
  16. 21. Degree of Diffusion Diffused Light cont… <ul><li>Outdoors, an overcast day produces diffused light </li></ul><ul><li>To fully diffuse light indoors, the subject would have to be placed near a large light source (large window or doorway) and reflectors be used to bounce light into the shadows (tenting is another way) </li></ul>
  17. 23. Degree of Diffusion Directional-Diffused Light <ul><li>Directional-diffused light is partially direct with some diffused or scattered rays. </li></ul><ul><li>It appears to to come from a direction and creates distinct shadows, but with softer edges that gradually go from light to dark and detail can still be seen in the darkest areas </li></ul>
  18. 24. Degree of Diffusion Directional-Diffused Light
  19. 26. Degree of Diffusion cont… Source of directional-diffused light <ul><li>Windows and doorways that have light bouncing in the room rather than shining directly in </li></ul><ul><li>Lights bounced off of a reflector before hitting the subject </li></ul><ul><li>Hazy days outdoors </li></ul><ul><li>Outdoor sunlight bounced onto a subject in a shaded area (under a tree) </li></ul>
  20. 28. Overcast Lighting <ul><li>A bright overcast sky, usually bright clouds or open shade, can make beautiful light and softens colors while keeping detail in the shadows </li></ul><ul><li>Heavy clouds or rainy days can make moody photos </li></ul>
  21. 30. Overcast Lighting <ul><li>Hazy sun and shade or reflected sunlight are great conditions for portraits </li></ul><ul><li>Indoors, portrait photographers imitate this type of lighting with their flash units to produce soft, smooth photographs without having to rely on weather conditions </li></ul>
  22. 31. Quality of Light <ul><li>Sunlight varies dramatically in its qualities and paying attention to its tendencies can help improve your photographs </li></ul><ul><li>Weather conditions, time of day, and time of year all have an influence on the quality of light </li></ul>
  23. 32. Quality of Light The Golden Hours <ul><li>Sunrise and sunset have been referred to as the “golden hours” for photography </li></ul><ul><li>These two times are wonderful for photographs because of the warm light and low angle of the light source. </li></ul>
  24. 34. Quality of Light The Golden Hours cont… <ul><li>Morning light is somewhat cooler than sunset, but both times produce warmer tones than at midday </li></ul><ul><li>The low angle of the sun produces long shadows and creates a feeling of depth and dimension in photographs, great for emphasizing texture and detail </li></ul>
  25. 35. Quality of Light The Golden Hours cont… <ul><li>These two times give better side lighting and backlighting opportunities, and often the light is soft enough so that the shadows aren’t overly dark and contrasty </li></ul>
  26. 37. Quality of Light Midday Sun <ul><li>In the summer, midday sun is harsh and contrasty, and the shadows it casts fall almost straight down creating a flatter feeling image than one with long, fading shadows </li></ul>
  27. 39. Quality of Light Midday Sun <ul><li>It can be hard in the summer, if not impossible, to get side lighting or back lighting with a midday sun as well </li></ul><ul><li>As the seasons change however, the sun is more angular even at noon and more interesting light can be found </li></ul>
  28. 40. Quality of Light cont… <ul><li>Autumn skies are often full of dramatic cloud formations that make for more interesting landscapes than a completely clear blue sky </li></ul>
  29. 42. The End