7 Quick Lighting Tips

1) Turn your sitters back to the sun

Now the temptation is to have the sitter face the sun, so they are well lit, but this tends to lead to hard shadows and squinty eyes. Much better to have their back to the sun and their eyes wide open.

2) Understand high-key and low-key

A high key image has largely lighter tones in the picture, a low-key image is predominantly dark tones. But the subject is always correctly exposed. An over-exposed image is not high-key, its just over exposed.

3) Ditch the light stand, use a monopod instead.

And an assistant to carry it and point it. Much quicker than a light stand, much more flexible, anybody can be your assistant.

4) Cloudy days are best

Everyone wants their wedding on a bright, sunny day expect me. Cloudy days give lovely soft, diffused even lighting. Sunny days give harsh, contrasty lighting.

5) Use windows as a soft box

Ideally use a north facing window, but if you are stuck with windows facing the sun, the use net curtains, blinds or a white sheet to put over the window to diffuse and soften the light.

6) Adjust the lights for deep set eyes

Bring the lights down, so light is cast into the eye socket - or use a reflector.

7) Hide those wrinkles

A more front facing light will help soften out wrinkles, a more side-on light will enhance them. Mature ladies get the front light, men get the side light.

key lighting facing exposed wrinkles Simon Q. Walden, FilmPhotoAcademy.com, sqw, FilmPhoto, photography

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