Contrast and Shadow Fill

As the title suggests, here I would be complementing the lighting by filling some of the shadows that appeared in the previous exercise. The elephant continues it’s starring role. I have moved the camera angle to be on a level with the model elephant. Other than that it is still the same initial lighting set up.

The first image is similar to a previous exercise in that it is lit, un-diffused from the right hand side, level with the model and three feet away from it. This is to give a control image to reference for the exercise.

Un-diffused from right

Un-diffused from right

The second shot is the same set-up by introducing the diffuser on to the front of the lamp. As expected the softness of light becomes immediately apparent.

Diffused from right

Diffused from right

The next set of five images are all shot with camera and the lamp in the same place but introducing various way of reflecting the light back on to the elephant from opposite the key light.

White reflector at 3 feet from object

White reflector at 3 feet from object

A white reflector is pointed facing at the elephant/lamp. This has the effect of bouncing some of the tungsten light back towards the subject. Due to the amount of natural fill light in the first two images the effect is not that noticeable other than it gets slightly darker and warmer due to me partially blocking the natural light with the reflector.

White reflector at 1.5 feet from object

White reflector at 1.5 feet from object

As I come closer towards the subject with the reflector I start to block out more natural light and introduce more warm light bounced back from the modelling light. The blue highlights from the previous image have now disappeared to be replaced with warm flat light. The texture is lost.

Dull side of aluminium foil 1.5 feet from subject

Dull side of aluminium foil 1.5 feet from subject

The introduction of the dull side of some aluminium foil in to the equation just barely starts to pick out a little more detail in the ear area. The hindquarters and face are a little lighter.

Shiny side of aluminium foil 1.5 feet from subject

Shiny side of aluminium foil 1.5 feet from subject

Again, very subtle changes as I turn the foil form dull side to shiny. The brown flank of the elephant has a hint of a highlight starting to form and the detail around the ear area is becoming more well defined.

Scrumpled aluminium foil 1.5 feet from subject, shiny side out

Crumpled aluminium foil 1.5 feet from subject, shiny side out

After crumpling the foil in to a ball and opening out again, the highlights are again diminished. The reflected light much more even and diffused due to the refracted nature of the crumpled foil. So I think, although very similar looking to the image using the dull side of the foil, the face is slightly brighter due to using the shiny side, albeit crumpled.

This was a good exercise to observe the subtleties in changes using reflectors. It also proves once again the strength and colour of natural light over artificial.

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