Is photography really the "art of using light"?

Is photography really the "art of using light"?

Everyone knows that there is light before photography, so light plays a very important role in the success or failure of photos. Indoors we can use various artificial light sources, such as flashes, light tubes, etc. 

  In the natural environment, there is no artificial light source, but we can make good use of natural light to create the same brilliant but light and shadow blockbuster. Natural light is the light shining on the earth from sunlight. Let us first take a look at my photographs taken with natural light.

You may find that even if you shoot the same subject, the results will be different at different times. Sometimes the image may look harder, sometimes it may be softer; or the color of the image may become colder for a while , For a while, it is warm, these are actually related to natural light.

1. The characteristics of shooting light in a day

  1) Early morning (soft, mainly cool light)

   At dawn before sunrise, low-angle light scatters, dominated by blue and cool colors, the light intensity is very weak, and the contrast of the scene is also weak. At this time, the sky is in a faint blue, and the picture presents a soft blueish cold tone. As the sunrise approaches, the brightness of the entire sky continues to increase, and the sky near the horizon will gradually change from colder blue. As the sunrise approaches, the light gradually becomes brighter, and the color temperature gradually rises with a little change. Light pink, pink and other gradually warmer colors appear. This color and tone change is rapid and subtle.

   So generally the morning is a good time for us to shoot portraits, suitable for shooting some fresh themes.

2) Noon (hard light)

   In travel or daily shooting, sometimes the so-called "noon" is actually half an hour after sunrise, and the clouds have gradually disappeared. The light at this time belongs to the top light, that is, the projection direction is perpendicular or almost perpendicular to the horizon. At this time, the shadow in the backlight area is heavy. If you shoot a portrait under top light, it will cause serious shadows under the deep sunken eye sockets and protruding nose, forming a hard or even scary effect. Such portrait photos often have poor results.

   But if we make full use of some shadows to reconcile the strong light ratio, there will often be unexpected effects.

Making full use of shades, sun hats and other methods that can lower the facial light pen can effectively avoid "ghost shadows" on the model's face, and can also increase the sun-dappled atmosphere. It is a good way to kill two birds with one stone.

   In addition, by adjusting the posture of the model and your own camera position, you can also achieve unexpected results.

The model can effectively avoid the light with high light ratio from appearing on the face by burying the head and looking down at the POSE.

At the same time, we can also lower our camera position and use the low camera method to shoot upside down to achieve a backlight-like effect, and it can also effectively avoid the appearance of bright light on the face. .

  3) Sunset (soft, mainly warm colors)

   The light at sunset is similar to the sunrise. It is a low-angle flat light, but it has a warmer effect. On the scenes shot against the light, a sun similar to "egg yolk" appears in the picture, which will be shrouded in a golden hue. If you miss the sunrise because it is difficult to get up during travel, then sunset is undoubtedly the best time to shoot portraits, because during this time there is ideal shooting light, colorful clouds, and half an hour after sunset, the color of the clouds changes more abundantly , Gradually changing from warm colors to cool colors, shooting portraits in the golden hour before and after sunset.

At sunset, shooting with backlight can reflect a very strong aesthetic atmosphere, so that our works are more beautiful and full of romantic colors.

The soft sunset can make the model's face full of three-dimensionality and better portray the emotions expressed.

   So everyone can see that it is not only under artificial light that it is necessary to shoot excellent light and shadow portraits. As long as we use all kinds of natural light reasonably, we can also shoot excellent light and shadow portrait photography.


Related Links:






Back to blog