|Shot with my new (!!!) 5d Mark II (with 50mm f/1.4)|
Click any image to see it larger
Read on for some creative solutions....
|Exposed for subjects-dock (way) overexposed|
|Exposed for dock-everything else (way) underexposed|
The solution was difficult to find. The silver reflector just wasn't bright enough and the speedlights are no competition for the sun. To try and overpower the sun a little, the only thing left to try was putting all 3 lights together in a bundle and firing them out of a reflective umbrella (try it and you'll find you lose less light than using your convertible umbrella as a shoot-through).
|Quick test to make sure they're firing correctly-looking a little ridiculous, but otherwise good!|
Anyway, using the umbrella with the bundled speedlights meant keeping the umbrella in nice and close (like about two feet - lucky Cristy was there to help!).
The eyes fell into dark shadows really easily so I tried as best I could to keep the eyes towards the light. I also saw quickly that the light source had to be physically closer to the darker skin tone to try and balance our shots. For more on balancing the ambient light with artificial light, see this post, this post or even this post.
|The umbrella was so close that I had to remove the umb. shaft in post for this shot, I think....|
|Test shot: blown highlights & clipped shadows|
Also with 2 people at f/11 this is where I first started thinking we should start bundling. We put 2 speedlights together, but only turned one on to start. (I know I've mentioned the Nikon SB-26 before, but that built-in optical trigger makes life really easy for around $100 off Ebay)
|2 speedlights stacked, but only one on to test first|
|Both lights in 1 umbrella but...it still needed to be moved in closer at full-power|
|Here's what the scene looks like with no extra light besides ambient|
|Here with 2 speedlights in one reflective umbrella at full power just outside of the frame|
I mentioned before that I just couldn't get the reflector to do enough on the really bright dock. Maybe it was just difficult to even see my LCD screen in the bright light or maybe in was the dock, but I was quite surprised by how well it worked using the silver side of a 5-in-1 reflector kit on the brick.
Again take a look with and without:
|With silver reflector|
|Without reflector - big difference! (click images to see them larger)|
|The sun is camera left slightly behind - filled with a silver reflector camera right|
Toronto International Circus Festival was going on at the Harbourfront Centre with Zero Gravity. Lucky for us, the characters walking by were really nice (and very photogenic!):
And finally to jump back to the end of the day (end of our shooting day at 2pm), Hani wrangled us a boat to take a few shots on! And out comes the reflector again:
|Thanks Carson for letting us shoot on your beautiful boat!|
Definitely another learning experience - we had a lot of fun, but...it's so much easier to shoot closer toward the end of the day (or the beginning) and you have so much more control. Lesson learned - save up for some big studio lights that can take on the sun!
And one final demonstration from Cristy on blowing up a balloon:
Tune in again next week for more unplanned mishaps!