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Randoms from the week

Here are some takes from my class painting with light lab and various fill and balance shots.

Sunset with pagoda in foreground

Our subject in daylight

Our final product

Our final productAbsolute Mayhem



Fill and Balance

Lighting Diagram

Junior University of Missouri civil engineering majors Amber Doughty, Ryan Kertz and Schuyler Noeth count cars for a class project at the intersection of Tenth and Broadway streets. The project will help students model intersections with improved signal times in Columbia, which could help with congestion during events such as the Mizzou vs. Oklahoma football game.

In my first take of fill and balance I saw a group of students sitting in the shade at an intersection downtown during midday. Perfect spot for fill. I metered on their faces and I set my flash to between a negative 2 to 3 exposure in TTL. It was hard to describe what they were doing with a picture so I incorporated the crosswalk counter in the frame to give it some content. I wish I brought something to bounce with because I felt like the shadows created by the flash in most of the takes were too harsh. The one I chose for my select though had a good ratio. I was shooting in the opposite direction of the sun too but I think it still looks natural.


Color Correction

The take under fluorescent lights was more well  lit then the shoot under incandescent lights. I feel like I managed a fair amount better at Maude’s Vintage. The main problems I found there were lack of customers to shoot and a tight shooting space. I found the light to give off a pinkish hue so I sported the SB-900 with a light green gel. In my select, I bounced the flash off the ceiling to dilute the light and to keep the direct reflection off the metal.

Single Flash


Bounce Flash



Direct Flash


Lighting Diagram

I have to say that this shoot was really not my best work. I felt like I was not in control for the most part. A lot of my takes turned out black or dark because I was looking through my viewfinder and missing my subject with the handheld flash. It was very aggravating because when I would get the right settings my subject moved. I think this assignment would have been much easier if my subject was stationary. I understand the overall idea of how and what I am supposed to be achieving with flash but I was disappointed with my shoots.

On the first part of the assignment I was using an SB-900 flash, which was amazing. It changed settings on the flash directly from my camera and displayed the distance it would illuminate. I guess the most trouble I had was aiming the flash and estimating distance. The second shoot went a little better however I had to use a different flash. I used an SB-28 for the bounce shoot. This flash was kind of a nightmare for me. The display was hard to read and the settings had to be changed manually. So every time I wanted to change a setting I would have to do so on my camera and on the flash. Can you say ANNOYING? I think I got the hang of bouncing though. I mostly used plain white pieces of paper for reflectors.


Gold Rush "Green"Gold Rush "Red"Gold Rush "White"Gold Rush "Black"The purpose of this assignment was to come up with a concept for metal or glass. My concept was the growth of the value of gold. According to a recent AP article by Christopher Leonard, Gold prices broke another record Wednesday in the stock markets. The December delivery rose $7.40 making gold worth $1,347.7 per ounce. Silver prices rose as well to $23.043 an ounce. Leonard reports that inflation fear is the cause of the price change. I wanted gold in the picture to represent a shift in its use. Since the price of gold is going up I wonder if people are selling their jewelry or other gold items for currency.

The heart locket and the whistle gave me the most problems with reflections. I fixed this by adding gobos to my main light source, which was a giant light box. I also placed a gold reflector to add a bit of fill for the wallet and to color the scene a bit more. If you noticed the heart locket changed colors. I think each picture sends a different message, whether it’s love with the red or envy with green. I changed the colors by using the angle of reflectance to capture the colors in the gobos I used. The green was actually the garbage pale lid in our studio.

Student Portrait

Glass and Metal Inspiration

Our upcoming assignment will be to shoot a scene with glass and a scene with metal. Here are a few sites I stumbled upon in preparation for the assignment. The picture below is from a Chihuly exhibit in Arizona Botanical Gardens. It was taken by Bradley O. whose blog is the first link.

Photograph by Bradley O.