7 September 2008

Using a reflector

During my session on Saturday I took a shot, then realised I hadn't moved my reflector. I moved the reflector to where it should be (opposite my keylight) and took the shot again. So I ended up with a great "with and without" illustration, showing the difference the reflector makes.

The keylight was to the baby's right, and a little up towards his face. The reflector was placed directly to his left. You can see how it bounced the light and filled in the harsh shadows. Sorry, these pictures are in the wrong order, so the left one shows "with" and the right is without.

(You can click this image to enlarge it a little.)

You can make a reflector out of just about anything: a piece of white card or board (foam core board works great), aluminium foil, those shiny silver car shades, a piece of white fabric, etc.

I have one of these, 33 inches in diameter, on a stand. I only ever use it on the silver side, although I have options for black, white, silver and gold. I do want a bigger one, but it's not urgent.

Try standing in front of a mirror with a light source coming from one side, then while watching in the mirror try holding a piece of white card on the opposite side to where the light is coming from - you will immediately see that side of your face lighten up. Experiment with reflectors when taking pictures - you'll soon get the hang of it and will appreciate the difference they make.

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