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Light and shadow

Video / Image editing, advanced techniques, computer settings, third party software, shortcuts, workarounds ... share your tips and tricks here.

Light and shadow

Postby Francesco Carzedda » Wed Dec 03, 2014 1:05 pm

I don't know if it might sound new, but it convinced me.
"Shadows define form".

The article:
http://www.picturecorrect.com/tips/phot ... you-think/

Image
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Re: Light and shadow

Postby Steve Grisetti » Wed Dec 03, 2014 2:29 pm

Very nice article, Francesco!

In Europe, cinematographers are called lighting directors -- because they paint color into the camera with light.

Light and shadow are everything in photographer and moviemaking.
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Re: Light and shadow

Postby Francesco Carzedda » Wed Dec 03, 2014 2:38 pm

I was a little uncertain before posting, but I am glad it looks useful.
I think it is also well written and presented, short and challenging, very encouraging.
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Re: Light and shadow

Postby Bob » Wed Dec 03, 2014 7:57 pm

From the article: "It is this—the way we record the shadows—that separates the pros from the wannabes."

I have to take issue with that statement. While very important, It is only one of the things that separates the pros from the wannabes. There are seven elements of art: line, shape, form, space, texture, value and color. How these elements are combined using principles of design to compose a photograph is what separates the pros from the wannabes. In the first two accompanying photographs, for example, the dark negative space surrounding the subject was every bit as important as the tonal values suggesting form and texture.
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Re: Light and shadow

Postby Francesco Carzedda » Thu Dec 04, 2014 3:11 am

Bob,
even if it might look odd,
I would like (like an old-times-ingenuous-schoolteacher) to repeat and sum the rules you recalled to remember them, and share this little effort:

-line,
-shape,
-form,
-space,
-texture,
-value,
-color .

Mine is a minimal contribute,
I can't add contents to each item yet,
please consider it for how much it worths,
eventually delete it.
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Re: Light and shadow

Postby _Paz_ » Thu Dec 04, 2014 12:37 pm

Interesting article, Francesco. Thanks for posting it.

Over the years I've put a lot of thought into what makes one painting/photo great and another so-so. I've personally come to believe composition is the single most important element of paintings and/or photographs... but then all the items Bob mentioned follow along. A single line can establish a composition and may not have any sense of depth. Whether the balance created is weak or strong will determine the essence of the work, dynamic or wimpy. The balance - or imbalance of positive vs negative space, what Bob is talking about, is a prime component of composition.

I LOVE color, but works can be great without color, for example, this photo of Churchill by Yosef Karsh:

Image

On the other hand, this Rothko is all about color. The visual tension created by stimulating the rods and cones of the viewer's eye create the composition in this one. Definitely not weak.

Image


I do agree that light vs shadow creates depth and form when viewing three dimensional objects while simultaneously creating positive and negative space - therefore composition - and I really love the chiaroscuro (strong contrast between light and dark, often with edges of objects fading into black on the unlit side) effect. Back when I was working as a portrait painter, I always used hot lights instead of a canned flash setup because I wanted to see the subtleties created by even tiny adjustments of the placement of the light on the subject's face. The demonstration they suggest using a flashlight is a great way to see this without a lot of equipment.
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Re: Light and shadow

Postby Francesco Carzedda » Thu Dec 04, 2014 3:16 pm

Sure, Patrice,
experience makes the difference.
My actual way is "beeing myself", it involves all of the skills one can get and his inspirations.

I found some points listed in a nice article (Select the focal point of your photo, Rule of thirds, Foreground vs Background, Coloring, Lining up your focal point, Angle, Lighting, Posing people, Take notes :-) ... as I have done :-) ...) :

http://www.picturecorrect.com/tips/tips ... otography/

This one fixes, with a very good video, three of the points Bob mentioned (line, shape and form):

http://www.picturecorrect.com/tips/an-i ... otography/
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Re: Light and shadow

Postby Francesco Carzedda » Mon Jan 19, 2015 2:07 pm

Wayne Moran shows 5 more useful and fundamental techniques which go beyond the rule of thirds.

The article includes a video:

http://www.picturecorrect.com/tips/5-co ... of-thirds/
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