Questions about Light Meter and correct exposure during shoot.

Started May 7, 2013 | Discussions thread
Clueless Wanderer
OP Clueless Wanderer Senior Member • Posts: 1,243
Re: Questions about Light Meter and correct exposure during shoot.

bm bradley wrote:

Arved wrote:

bm bradley wrote:

place the key @ 125deg camera right and bit high.. sun works great for this and the fill @30deg camera left level with the lens ... just ball park numbers... you'll see right away where the lights go after a few shots.

My (limited) experience tells me that the farther from the lens axis the fill light is placed, the more likely it's going to create it's own shadows. I would caution to put the fill as close to the lens axis as possible and/or use as large a lightshource as possible (shoot through umbrella or softbox.

With all due and sincere respect, this is just my opinion. There are masters of light here who know better than me, and you may be one of them. It's just that the idea of putting a fill light off-axis, as you suggest, has caused me problems, and seems counter-intuitive to me to the concept of fill light controling shadows. The OP's question seems to be a good example of the rules needing to be broken to produce the required results, and your suggestions may be much the same.

Since you're basically suggesting split lighting (main and fill nearly opposite of each other), I can see where this is likely to work. I just see it as a bit risky, not having tried it myself. I would also caution that since the main light is from (slightly) behind the subject, to watch for flare, and be ready to flag the main light to avoid it.


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- Arved
'Highlights next to shadows to create detail, depth, dimension and added color saturation.' - David Ziser

I generally shoot with as much ambient as possible so this works for me... the OP shooting at F22, this will not work at all AND the axis of the camera lens is not set in stone.

yes set the lights so you aren't causing issues with flare and very simple to look at an image and take a small step to the side if the fill is an issue..

I just guessed on the degrees because I shoot by 'feel' and put the light where I need them to work... I've been setting lights since 1983 so I might go about lighting a bit differently and less 'scientifically' than many shooters here.

feel free to try this lighting setup, customizing as needed to work with your 'eye'

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'when I ask you what time it is, don't tell me how to build a watch'

The f22 at ISO 200 works fine if you got the flash power to back it up. I was using f22 to give me the depth of field I needed from a Nikon 105mm D.  I totally agree with the rest of your posting though. When it comes to flare from hard light's aimed back at the camera I have velcro on the flash heads and carry 10x8 inch pieces of black card also with velcro on them to act as barn doors esque. Lol, If I put one card on either side of the flash, it looks like a Tie fighter out of Star Wars

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