Hot Lights Cha Cha Cha

on August 11, 2015

Did goe to the Westside Camera Club laste night and was greatley entertained. We did a talk and a practical session on taking portraits.

You can't teach portraiture in a half hour but you can show one light setup and if the lights are the constant variety and have dimmers you can show the effects on the sitter's faces pretty well.

The enthusiastic club members did very well, as did their models. They listened carefully,
looked closely, and tried out the business with their varied cameras - but as I said to them at the start, the best teaching cameras were sitting either side of their noses. And so it is with most people. Try this:

1. Look inna book. Or on the net , if you are allergic to paper. Look at pictures that artists have drawn of the human face. Then look at photographs that have been taken in studios of sitters from the Victorian era to modern times. Look at the light.

2. Get a pair of lights and stands and a patient model. Make the face look good with one light on one side, and then see if it is going to be improved by letting a little soft light onto it from the other side. Figure out how to soften that light ( Hint:umbrellas or Lastolite diffusers...) and then just look. And when you can make the face look good to your eyes, it can look good to the camera's eye.

One caution - selfies won't help most people. We do not see ourselves as others see us and neither do we see our own portraits with a clear eye. In my case it is a blessing...

Uncle Dick
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