Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Some Quick Answers From Yesterday's Lighting Tutorials

Every post usually has it's share of comments and all are appreciated. The two lighting posts, the one I did last Tuesday and this week's Technique Tuesday raised a few more questions than usual so let me clear the air on some of the points that were raised. Here we go...

Q: In the examples you show, I assume that you didn't gel the flash, which separates your subject from the background nicely. Are there situations where you prefer to gel?

DAZ: I prefer shooting daylight balanced flash when doing these kind of images. With the camera balanced to the flash, the subject pops out from the background. Do I ever use filtered flash? Check out, "I'm Jellin' With My Zoom Flash" right here.

Q: One quick question, in the second video you were using wireless radio triggers to remotely fire the flash's, yet you still use ETTL to fire the main flash. Is the off camera flash in manual mode, or is it also in ETTL?

DAZ: Even though my Quantum can be set up to run in ETTL mode, I prefer it in manual mode. In manual mode, I have complete control over the flash's output. Relying on ETTL may blow a shot now and then and I don't want that to happen. Yes, the on-camera flash is always on ETTL, but more importantly my camera is always in manual mode whenever a flash is being used for the same reason as stated above. It allows me more control over the finished image.

Q: How high up off the ground does the assistant hold up the umbrella 6ft?

DAZ: The off-camera light source should always be slightly above the faces of those it is illuminating. Too high - you will cause "raccoon eyes" and too low will create "Halloween" shadows on the background. Remember, if you've posed you groups on church steps, you still need to get the light above those heads. We use a 6 foot mono pod with the Quantum attached - sometime my assistant is holding it at full arm's reach over his/her head to get the light in the right position.

Q: I am assuming you are always using a tripod with these slow shutter speeds?

DAZ: Nope, I never carry a tripod to a wedding or family shoot these days. I stopped carrying a tripod when I started using image stabilized lenses. I can work much more quickly and the results are the same. It is true though that I am secretly working with Canon and Nikon to develop a tractor beam that attaches to the camera to hold the subjects still ;~)

1 comment:

  1. Thanks! When I followed the link to your Jellin' with My Zoom Flash article, I was expecting something basic, like coping with icky fluorescent lighting. Instead, that post is a much more fun creative idea!

    Thanks also for the info about how you work fast and light -- no tripod and "flash on a stick" with the monopod.

    Thanks most of all for the pictures you post from weddings past, telling us your thought process on each one.