Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Portrait time

Due to excessive rain, I have been taking pictures of the kids indoors the past couple of weeks.  What are some things you can do to get enough light indoors?

First of all, beware of the mixed lighting sources.
Note that the fluorescent lights put off a greenish hue, the tungsten lights a bluish hue, and outdoor is the standard here.  And it's all about balance.
If you have a subject close to a really bright window, the fluorescent light in the room may not even show up in your image. Another way is to introduce a flash. This allows you to shoot with the window light and the flash (which are quite similar in their white balance) in a room with tungsten or fluorescent.   So here's the lighting setup for these portrait shots.
The flash on the floor is set at the lowest setting it has M 1/128.  So is the camera flash.  The camera flash is used here to simply trigger the SB600 flash.  The exposure is f3.2 at 1/80 at ISO 800.  
I chose 1/80 because I notice if I use 1/60 or slower, my kids pictures are blurred due to subject movement.
I like: the focus at f3.2 and 70mm (enough of the subject is in focus).  To calculate my depth of field... it was taken with  Nikon D700 taken at 5ft away from subject at f3.2.  That gives me about 4 inches of depth... that's not a lot... so I really need to ensure that my focus point is the eyes.  
The lighting: I like that my subject is a little brighter than the background.  
I don't like: the highlight on his face is a little hot and a little larger than I wanted.
Do over:  I would move the flash back a little bit more... maybe more of 1 or 2 o'clock (instead of the 2:30 it is currently at)
And hope I don't lose you here... I would dial my f-stop up just a bit, maybe to 4.5 so that my lowest setting on my flash wasn't as strong.  More on flash output power*** later
Here are some others from the same shoot:

Pic of the day:

*** flash output is influenced by distance to subject, flash power setting, f-stop and ISO of camera.

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