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Strobe Exposure Essentials Q&A

Lesson 22 from: Location Lighting 101

Lindsay Adler

Strobe Exposure Essentials Q&A

Lesson 22 from: Location Lighting 101

Lindsay Adler

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Lesson Info

22. Strobe Exposure Essentials Q&A


Class Trailer

Day 1


Class Introduction


Principles of Light


Speedlights vs Strobes


Compressing the Scene


Location Lenses and Lenshoods


Metering Modes and Back Button Focus


Natural Light Reflectors


Lesson Info

Strobe Exposure Essentials Q&A

I did want to show you one image that I want to jump into a couple questions that we had so I did this shoot as part of an editorial that I photographed for a magazine this girl her name is kimberly cole and she's an up and coming singer and pop songwriter and so they wanted something at the words they described to me were energetic movement power like that those are the kind of feels that they wanted this kind of things they wanted me to express so this is shot um in a very narrow hallway between a wall and an elevator on the top floor of the dream dream hotel in new york city and so these air actually lightbulb things on the ceiling and by dragging my shutter toe a twentieth of a second I'm able to wiggle my camera the flash freezes her in place and then I can have those those lights look like they're exploding but another version of that and actually what I did specifically in this photo is you consume in and out if you're using a zoom lens so that's why there it's not just out of f...

ocus you can kind of see streaks and even some streaks on her dress here um this goes to moore advance their tune out if it like doesn't fit with the where your knowledge is but had one light on her exposing for the ambiance but I wanted this to sparkle as well so I put another constant light on her dress so that when I zoomed it would blur but no constant light on her face and this is just the ambient light behind her so I actually like purposely added a constant light in a special place so I could make more blurred by my zoom okay so I know there were a couple questions um how did you focus in the dark okay how did I focus in the dark all right so a couple tips for focusing in the dark tomorrow for speed lights there's one thing that you want to enable which is called auto focus assist beam we don't have that for stroke jobs um so if you focus using your center focus point it is the most sensitive and it's easiest to focus with if you've ever tried using an outer focus point it is much harder for it it's detect light like this the centre one is the one to use so I was using backward and focused like we talked about yesterday where I would use auto focus focus on her lock it and then recompose and because I'm not shooting at one point four and she's not moving I can focus and recompose it feels to be in focus the other thing is she is wearing a sparkly dress and there's enough ambient light that what my meter what my cameras looking for to focus its looking for contrast and just enough of those sparkles exist that it can see that and focus on the contrast there if you don't have something sparkly like that what I would try to do is I try to put that center point on the edge of an arm or someplace where it's her light skin against the dark background not like right in the middle like on the edge of it because it'll pick up edges that's what it's looking for a bar that you know I bring a flashlight we hold up the flashlight you put it down and I feel like we did that in the beginning or we held up an iphone just to make sure that I was doing good with focus on and then since I didn't move my camera was kind of already like that but we do a lot of the iphone pre focus okay then I had another thing that I wanted to address yes absolutely wanted to talk about it good okay so tomorrow we're going to talk about something with speed lights called high speed sync and I'm going to get into that in depth and what it allows you to do is to exceed your camera sink speed so in this case I could go faster than one two hundredth of a second it's going to give me more flexibility by default all of our cameras and like typical triggers that's how it works one two under the second is it however on speed lights there's a button you can push that lets you go faster there is an equivalent at four studio strobes on location and it's something called hyper sink um some triggers I believe einstein allows you to do hyper sync and then us very specific pocket wizard brand's models will allow you to do it and it's the same thing I would actually show this in detail tomorrow so if you want to see it but basically forces your flash to put out lots of little flashes real fast so as the curtain is moving it just lights each section that's actually exposed as the curtain is moving so that it functions differently it changes the power of your flight does a lot of different things but the equivalent I don't get into here but if you want to be able to go faster than your cameras sink speed you need to get triggers that allow you to do hyper sink and so if you have eine signs look into that if you don't look into pocket wizards just let you know s and ruby says that video was the best and most practical flash segment that I have ever seen anywhere love it thanks lindsay fairy ah graffiti and adina c had a couple questions about front or rear curtain shudder dragging eyes that what you were doing here and can you talk a little bit about that if it's not too advanced for this course yeah so basically you can choose when all right so we had our little our curtain thing right okay so we had the first curtain come up and then the second curtain close you can decide whether the flashes right as soon as that first curtain goes up or at the end right before the second one closes there's there's a little bit of time in between and you can choose when your flash fires by default it's when the first one goes up then it fires rear it would go and then right before this this goes up affairs yeah why would we want to do that I mean that it that big of a difference and fires after the first one goes up right before the second closes or so here's the very if you've read books it's the very very classic example of like a guy on a bike all right it's a guy in a bike at night and you've got some got some blur okay so he's riding his bike and for first curtain it flashes in the beginning and then you see the blur after which makes no sense to us because why would he be frozen and then motion in front of him what you would want is you want it to do the blur and the freeze him at the end so all the blur's behind him like he's going fast so for a runner for a car or something like that so that's like the very practical application of why you would do were curtains think most of the time I don't most of time I just have it be first curtain like I had in this example one from misty see how did she make the model sharp but the ambient light drag okay so I made sure this is and I used to do this in weddings all the time and this is why I like this class so much is I never thought about why sometimes it wouldn't work and sometimes it would when I shot weddings so it was really nice and in a wedding to shoot a longer shutter speed and I'll have my flash off camera and I take a picture and then move right so it had this blur of lights and it's very very dreamy but sometimes the subject will be blurry I'd see them frozen in one place and their faces are blurred and creepy and ghostie which doesn't really work if you're doing bridal pictures and so the difference between the ones where I would just see her face frozen and the ones where I'd see her face frozen and the ghosting is if there was a lot of ambient light on my subject so if the subject isn't is dark like let's say they're on a dance floor but it's it's a really damn maybe it's outdoors for example it's a big outdoor dance florida wedding but in the background you've got candles and you got the lights on the canopy and stuff she'll be totally dark and then the ambient light behind her they're two separate things so you can go ahead and have a long shudder and freezes her in place perfectly however if we're indoors and there's a spotlight on them and that spotlight shows up in my long exposure I'll get the frozen flash and then the blur created by the spotlight on their face so that's the difference between the two it works well if you can get your subject in shadow and no light on their face or just significantly dimmer light if you are doing a scene like this where you want some some blur on dh you're just not sure about ambient light on your subject can you like put up a black curtain or something behind your strove to just sort of block it out so in this particular example we're going to get into this a little bit this the solution I used in this example you could try to block off shade on them you could put up a black flag like we talked about yesterday negative phil something move them to where there's no light in this example I actually used a neutral density filter to darken everything down a bit and those back lights were so bright that those would show and then I could have a longer shutter speed because in order to go here was shooting a twentieth of a second there's a window right behind me like literally right behind where I'm sitting there like actually a giant bank of windows so unfortunately when I would go ahead and try to shoot at a twentieth of a second she was going to be fully lit so I put on that neutral density filter enough so that ambient from the window wasn't showing but those late behind her was still strong enough that would that twentieth the second they showed up put in some instances that would have darkened down those lights too much to show up and then that wouldn't have worked so it kind of try it out in different situations it was cool because it was I've been dying to know what to do in editorial with all the blurry lights and I finally got to do it so came out well and there is another question I had a question about like the I s o because I know on my camera when you up it up like too much you get a lot of grain and I was wondering um with the strobe doesn't like make the person less grainy and the es I don't know it's a really good question so unfortunately the stroke doesn't make them any less grainy so if eso what I recommend you do is you figure out where you're comfortable and bumping up to with your camera I know that I am very I am totally fine with sixteen hundred on my camera I don't think twice about it thirty two hundred is where I start going all right this is getting a little little bit too grainy for my tastes it will look better on them with the strobe because there's more contrast and say look a little more defined first is no stroke that might look a little bit hazy but if they're still the same amount of green so yeah it depends on your camera okay that's good to go alright something I wanted to note as well is just to make sure touch on this how high up word how low you turn your flash definitely or your stroke definitely will make a difference to the recycle time so if you're using full power a you're going tohave a battery that drains quicker and then be you're also going to have to wait longer in between your full power flashes so just just be aware of that if you're running into that problem a lot it's probably because you're shooting at high power so I don't have ah whole presentation for this but let's say that I've been shooting at full power this whole time and I know crap I don't have much battery life left and I need a slash to last what do I do well if I bump up my eyes so a little bit or open up my aperture a little bit now it makes it more sensitive to light so I can turn down that power of the strobe to be the correct exposure I still can't go over my sink speed unless I do hyper sink which will talk about tomorrow so it's that balance of like okay I'm going to see how far I can open up and still have correct ambient light or how much I could bump up my I s so in order to make it more sensitive to that flash so I don't have to shoot at full power and I recommend that especially if you're going out on location somewhere and you know you want your flash to last for a while

Class Materials

bonus material with purchase

Keynote 1
Keynote 2
Keynote 3
Gear Guide

Ratings and Reviews

a Creativelive Student

This class was amazing. Lindsay Adler is a great presenter...I learned so much.....I love that she spoke about natural light..strobes and speedlites. Wonderful information. I purchased this and I am glad I did. Great job Lindsay. Jean


Lindsey Adler is one of the best and most engaging photography instructors in the USA. I highly recommend this lighting course. It felt more like a 101 and a 102 course than just a basic course. She teaches in a way that makes learning alot of fun and the amount of time & effort that she puts into her video and class presentations are second to none. Her classes are well worth their weight in gold and you will walk away with a wealth of knowledge!


Lindsay is amazing , I love the way she explains everything!! This course is filled with GREAT information and helps you better understand natural lighting,strobe and flash. Thank You Lindsay, please keep your classes coming!

Student Work