Flat Light

0 commentsPhotography

We took this photograph using two lighting no-nos.

On this shoot, the Art Director insisted we use on-camera flash, so we compromised a little and used a strobe immediately behind and to the left of camera (pretty much the same thing, but slightly better) and did our best to get workable results.

I positioned the model against the wall (another no-no) and tweaked the head to at least get the flat lighting slightly directional and have the hard shadow just offset her, creating a contour effect. (“Head” as in strobe head not the model’s head :) ). Light was bounced in from the model’s left (camera right) for fill, further accentuating the flatness.

This is a style I wouldn’t normally go for, but it fit with the aggressive, somewhat abstract look the brand wanted. It was also a good exercise in keeping my photojournalistic approach to fashion photography (yes I’m aware there’s a potential contradiction in terms there) in check.

I guess the lesson I learned here is that when put in a creatively constrictive situation, one response is to fight it every step of the way. The other is to go with it and push it to the extreme.

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