Saturday, 12 December 2015

12 days of Christmas photography tips. Day two, tip two: The beauty ofdaylight

Daylight Portraits - Window light

My fabulous Grandfather, lit by window light. 
These often dull winter days that close in before we even get going don’t lend themselves well to beautiful, naturally lit photos indoors.

When using your phone it seems any kind of movement ends up looking very blurred when you look at the photo after and this is becuase your camera phone isn't great at compensating for low light.

...If you have the new iphone7 you may already know it has been commended for its 'stunning' low light performance. I'd love to know what you think if you have one.  

What you need to bear in mind is that even professional cameras struggle in low light and require the ISO setting to be increased to avoid capturing unwanted blurring.

So if capturing moving subjects without the blur is something you want to master on these dull winter days and over the Christmas period you simply have to make sure there is enough good light available to shoot in.

This means shooting indoors between the hours of 9am and and 3pm, or finding the lightest room in your house to take the photos in. Whichever room you take your photos in make sure the light from a window is shining directly on the subject, and be sure to make sure you are not standing in front of the window when you take your photos or you will block out part of that available light. You may even want to turn the lights on in the house but beware when you have daylight and tungsten light in an image some of the colours can look a little strange.

. If approximately, why not place your subject next to the window. Here you have a strong light source where you will notice higher degrees of light and shadow on the face that make for quite arty photos.

This is Edna, a lovely elderly lady I used to visit when I was at university. 

Sometimes we forget to take photos of grandparents at Christmas yet for me there is such beauty to be found in an elderly face; a whole life imprinted in the lines and tones. Why not try taking some photos of your elderly guests this Christmas. One thing is for sure, when those elderly relatives come to pass no one ever says, 'I wish we had LESS photos' of nan or granddad. 

Another interesting affect comes from bringing your subject further into the room away from the window. Here you will notice that you don’t have the problems of strong light or shadow, instead you get a more even spread of light. This is Caroline from a maternity shoot we did this summer. She is lit from a far away window the other side of the room. This lighting is far more painterly, and subtle and gives muted tones to the image.  

Have fun playing about but always make sure when you bring your subject further into the room that they are facing that light source and your back is to it  …. and try not to block out that light source with your body, which is easy to do! Stand just at the side of the window when taking photos.

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