Photography Lighting Experts Brattleboro VT

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Rusty Shutter Imaging
(413) 648-9735
33 Huckle Hill Rd
Bernardston, MA
Rite Aid
(603) 239-6000
10 Main St
Winchester, NH
White Point Imaging
(603) 357-5939
310 Marlboro Street
Keene, NH
Thielen SUSY Inc
(603) 352-4848
45 Kelleher Street
Keene, NH
Walgreen Drug Store - Store Information
(603) 357-1000
420 West Street
Keene, NH
Studio in the Valley
(413) 498-5660
61 Main Street
Northfield, MA
Winrock Ecological Services
(413) 863-3087
85 Avenue A
Turners Falls, MA
Ritz Camera One Hour Photo
(603) 352-1486
Colony Mill
Keene, NH
Frost Studio
(603) 352-7705
255 West Street
Keene, NH
Corliss Mark Multi-Media Creations
(603) 352-8366
8 Gemini Drive
Keene, NH

Great Portrait Light!

Great Portrait Light! - 4/7/08

Let nature worry about your lighting so you can focus on making great shots

next Portraits are always a big challenge-even bigger if you're photographing kids. So why not simplify the distractions so you can concentrate your efforts on making great shots? Instead of worrying about lighting effects and flash exposures, just go outside at any time of day, any day of the year, and find some open shade.

It just so happens that open shade is one of the most flattering portrait lights, and it can be found almost anywhere. On sunny days, it's under tall trees or in open doorways, and on cloudy days, it's everywhere all the time. Open shade is an immensely soft, incredibly flattering light-making it great for portraits, and even better for making kids look like little angels. Because it's a broad, even light source, it's also perfect for photographers who need to move around-say, in case they're chasing energetic little angels all over the place.

Once you've found open shade, the hard part's finished. Look for a background that's not distracting and preferably pretty uniform. Bring along a large reflector (like white poster board or foamcore) and a spare set of hands to hold it. Use this fill card as the primary light source on the subject. On a sunny day, the open shade is probably two full stops brighter than the sunlight exposure; once you add the fill card, it's about one stop. Pick an exposure slightly over normal to soften skin tones even more, and err on the side of a wide-open aperture to minimize the depth of field. (I like to meter for the face before adding the fill card. This way, once the fill is in place, I'll be subtly overexposing the shot, further softening skin tones and making the light even more flattering.)

With this bright soft light and shallow depth of field, you'll be amazed at the quality of the photos that come from such simple lighting. Even better, you'll be free to concentrate on interacting with your subjects-always a great step toward great photographs, particularly if you're working with kids.

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