Friday, 23 July 2010

Location Lighting Techniques Seminar Tour

I will  attending this event today hosted by the legendary Joe McNally! It's taking place at the Business Design Centre in Islington and I'm really looking forward to it. This is the itinerary:

Off Camera Flash Essentials
10:00 to 11:00 A.M.

It all starts with getting the flash off your camera to create directional light. In this session you’ll learn how to:
1) Set up and control your flash so it doesn’t look like you used “flash” at all. 2) Use Sync Speed to your advantage to mix your flash and the ambient room light for more natural–looking images. 3) Recognize the relationship of your camera’s built-in meter to the flash settings. 4) Diffuse light from a flash to give you that large softbox look on location without using one. 5) Handle emergency situations when you have to use your built–in pop–up flash. 6) Control the direction and power of your flash, and limit where the light goes using some simple add–ons.

Multiple Flash: The Next Step
11:15 A.M. to 12:15 P.M.

Joe shows you how easy it is to add a second wireless flash to take your look to the next level. You’ll learn how to: 1) Get your flashes to talk to each other wirelessly and learn how easy it is to use more than one flash using controls already in your camera. 2) Control your flash right from your camera position, allowing you to work faster and smarter. 3) Use Joe’s own power ratios for quickly setting up creative off–camera lighting effects that really work. 4) Use Joe’s strategy for starting with one flash, and then exactly how and when to add a second (or third) flash. 5) Quickly and easily set up multiple flashes on location and break your fear of using more than one flash.

12:15 to 1:15 P.M.

Great Portraits with Multiple Flash – Live Portrait Sessions
1:15 to 2:15 P.M.

If you shoot people, this session is going to blow your mind, as Joe does a live portrait and an athletic editorial–style portrait shoot right in the class! You’ll see the entire process from beginning to end. He’ll cover: 1) The “15–minute executive portrait for tight deadline;” the bread and butter of many commercial shooters. You’ll see exactly what to do to maximize your time and profits shooting on location. 2) Analyzing the location and establishing a gameplan. 3) How to shave 5 minutes off this 15–minute timeline for on–location athletic style portraits. You’ll be amazed at what you can do in 10 minutes! 4) Secrets for working with rim light, fill light, the main and background lights.

Unleashing the Power of Your Flash
2:30 to 3:45 P.M.

Joe uncovers the hidden power of your off–camera flash, along with a few advanced techniques that will open up a whole new world, including: 1) Which controls on the flash you need to know about, including which are critical to moving you to the next level and which you can ignore. 2) Which syncing options really work and how to use them to your advantage. 3) Exactly when and why to use Front Curtain Sync, Rear Curtain Sync, Slow Curtain Sync, and how the pros use these to create a pro–look when shooting flash. 4) The next level of diffusion, when to use Wide Area Adapter and when to zoom the flash manually. 5) How to work with gels and get realistic–looking color from your flash. 6) Advanced Off–Camera Flash Techniques like FP High–Speed Sync Mode which allows you to sync your flash well beyond the top sync speed–great for shooting in bright sunlight outdoors when you want to stop motion.

Bringing out the “Big Guns” – Intro to Big Lights on Location
4:00 to 5:00 P.M.

One of the most popular trends in pro–lighting is to take your studio lighting on location, and now that you understand how off–camera flash works, this is surprising easy. In this session you’ll see how to: 1) Decide when to use Big Lights versus small off–camera flashes and how this affects the quality and quantity of light. 2) Incorporate the lighting tools for Big Lights to control and direct your light, including using very large soft boxes, mid–size soft boxes, and a Beauty Dish for the look the big magazines are looking for. 3) Light a group portrait. Joe takes one of the most intimidating lighting challenges and makes it so and quick and easy, you’ll never shy away from lighting a group portrait again. 4) Take all the techniques you’ve learned today and bring them together to know “what is good light,” and how to create it consistently and predictably on–location or in the studio, regardless of which type of flash you use. 5) Joe’s shortcuts, workarounds, and real–life tricks–of–the–trade that he uses every day in his work to make the most from his time behind the camera. You’ll be able to take these same techniques and put them to use today guaranteed!

What have I learned?
It was good to see a highly rated professional go through a variety of lighting settings in real time. Very few of them worked first time, and Joe made the point (several times) that mistakes are normal. There is alot of trial and error involved so I think this will help me to be less disappointed when I don't get the best results.

There was one particular scenario where Joe had placed the male model in the audience. It was supposed to represent a corporate shot of an executive amongst the shareholders. He then had to light the model, allow some ambient light for the 'shareholders' and he had a speedlight with a blue filter lighting the wall in the background. He spent well over 20 minutes on this and, although you probably wouldn't get way with that in the field, it was interesting to see him come up against the same problems as the rest of us. But he was able to talk us through what was going on and think aloud as to what he could try to fix the various glitches.

I also have a better understanding of the different modes and when to use them. Joe McNally said he always starts with TTL, but he expects to switch to manual whenever it fails. He also showed us a sequence of stunning photographs, and they were not all lit from the front.

Overall, I've come away with a renewed confidence in using speedlights and I'm looking forward to using light in more interesting ways.

No comments:

Post a Comment