Fill Light

diner engaementFill Light and the importance 

First and foremost, I’d like to thank everyone that I’ve had the pleasure of working with, and you (the reader/visitor) for making it possible to do what I so dearly love. I had the opportunity to photograph the wedding announcements of two close friends. They’ve been so supportive, and I’m glad they elected to have me photograph such a major step in both their lives. I think this “job” was so cool because I had the opportunity to watch them grow together since the beginning. I wasn’t in the least bit surprised when he proposed. We talked about the venue they’ll be getting married in, and what totally progressive ideas about the reception they have. Everything about them is so nostalgic and easy-going. Its easy to shoot a couple that just shines with admiration for one another. When we discussed the session it was clear they didn’t want typical ‘engagement’ photos. I agreed, they aren’t just typical people.

* The Technical Stuff*

Something important to start. I never understood the importance of fill light. Its become so crystal clear the difference it makes. I read somewhere “The difference between a snapshot and a photograph is the technical usage of lighting” clearly there will be a hundred people that would elaborate, and or disagree. Thats not really what I want to discuss though. The difference between just pointing you camera at something and composing a shot with light (flashes, reflectors, lightbox, whatever..) is night and day. The ability to reproduce the same thing over and over regardless of location, or weather, is what separates professionals, and hobbyist. Now I’m not knocking anyone here… I’m just saying that the knowledge of knowing how, when to add light, and when to take light away, makes a huge difference in the product you are delivering. I shot this inside a beach bar thats primary light source was the neon lights hanging in the window, and some fluorescent overhead lights, not ideal by any means. I had a lens with a wide aperture and I just bumped my ISO up a little. I mostly just kept the speedlight angled at the ceiling to bounce light everywhere. If you’re familiar with flash sync speeds you know that I couldn’t go beyond 1/250th. (I normally keep it at 1/200 just to be sure I don’t get any curtains in the frame) I shot pretty wide open for the most part, and just made sure I stayed at exposure. I made sure the subjects had enough light pouring onto them, but kept the feel very natural.

If you have any questions, or just want to discuss different techniques, drop me a message, and I’d love to.

Where you can find me online.

Twitter: @jonstellphoto


Flickr: IXXIphotography

Google+: Jon Stell Photo

Facebook: Jon Stell Photo


Thank you again, and may you have a picture worthy week.

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