Balancing strong sunlight on faces

Started Aug 29, 2012 | Discussions thread
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assaft
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Balancing strong sunlight on faces
Aug 29, 2012

Hi folks,

Yesterday I needed to take an image of this scene:

(underexposed by 0.7EV to prevent highlight clipping in the bright side of the face)

Eventually only this crop was needed:

After some PP in LR, this was my end result:

(DPReview's jpeg rendering makes these images look even worse than they really are. originals look better)

Obviously I had to deal with lots of noise in the darker side of the face. In total I think I pushed this part by something like 2EVs (in a combination of different sliders). NR was set on 35/25 for luminance/chrome.

I also tried to use the pop-up flash in an attempt to make the light on the face more even but then I had to underexpose drastically (to make the flash the main source of light on the face) and I lost all the detail in the background.

My question is what can be a simple solution for balancing the light on a face in a scene like this. I thought about a wireless flash like the fl-300r, which can be positioned to illuminate only the dark side of the face. But I have zero experience with flash photography. I have no idea if the flash power of the fl-300r is enough and whether choosing the right distance, angel and flash power can be tricky.

I'd be grateful if someone could comment.

Thanks,
Assaf

p.s. if someone can figure out the meaning of the banner - (s)he will find it.

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