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In this installment of the Lighting with Flash series, photographer and Strobist publisher David Hobby visits a conservation center to photograph subjects small and large, demonstrating flash lighting techniques along the way. The course begins with a close-up shoot of a small frog—and with details on how to light close-ups and macros using a small softbox and a reflector made of crumpled aluminum foil. Next, David uses multiple strobes and umbrellas to transform a dark blacksmith shop into a warm backdrop for a portrait of a craftsman at work. In a bonus chapter, David discusses an approach for organizing photo meet-ups that have a purpose: leveraging the talents of multiple photographers to quickly create a set of photos for a worthy organization.
David: you, when you lean in closer to the fire, I c, I can really, yeah, there we go. There we go. I think, I'm really catching' some glow out of that fire now. All right. Back out. Thank you very much. Okay. So we killed the, all of the ambient light in the room except for the cracks coming through the door and such. And, we're really tryin' to make this work. (SOUND) Yeah, but we've got that glowing stick thing solved really well at this point, so that's a (SOUND) I'm backing up a tad.
None of my lights are moving with me, so no matter where I shoot, the lighting ratios are always the same. The only thing that's moving is my trigger light really at this point. (SOUND). I'm going to come in kind of close to you for a few, Albin, okay? Albin: All right.
(SOUND). David: Okay. Now firing up top, I've gotta remember, constantly remember to check my 1001, 1002. I'm slowing down up there. I've gotta slow down for my top light, since you're so, set on such high power. This looks really nice I (SOUND) let's see, there we go. Albin, you want to take a quick look at this and see that you're looking nice and, nice and rich and warm there? Albin: Oh wow! Cool.
David: It's very Currier and Ives. Albin: Alright. David: Or, or what's the name, the Saturday Evening Post guy? Albin: Norman Rockwell. David: That's it, that's the guy. Albin: Excellent. David: Now I'm looking for little problems. Everything that I see right now I like. the stick is glowing the way I want it to glow, the fires glowing the way I want it to glow. I think, I think I'm really close now. I'm just, I'm trying to get pictures. Now I'm going to, I'm going to flip this over to you. Is, is there something, is there something that I should know from a blacksmith's perspective, I mean Albin: Just what you've seen.
David: Okay, okay, great, great. The, the last thing I want to do is get all the technical stuff right and then have one of those, other than that, Mrs. Lincoln, how was the play moments? Albin: So far, I haven't done anything that I wouldn't normally do. David: Excellent, great, great. Albin: Other than working (INAUDIBLE). David: (LAUGH) Yeah. Well, you look marvelous. (NOISE) Hey Alvin? Albin: Yes? David: I'm going to rotate you a little more around towards the light, just, just a tad.
Not much, if you can. Albin: To my left? David: Yeah, yeah, so you rotate counter-clockwise. To your, there you go, there you go. Yeah. And Dave, can I have you move a little bit away from that chimney? I'm trying to grab that bellows in there. They spent so much time working, building that bellows, I don't want to, I don't want to give 'em up. Totally, yeah. 'Kay, how much can I get over there? Yeah. Ooh, Alison's going to like this.
(SOUND) One, two, three, okay. (NOISE) Here we go. 'Kay I'm going to fake you a little towards that light when you're working with your face.
Look up a little bit so I can see it because every little thing is perfect now. Albin: Okay. Look up? David: Yeah, yeah just, just instead of the hunch over a little bit. Yeah, yeah because every, everything's looking really nice right now I'm getting picky. Like, I didn't even see you hiding back there before, Dave, so I've got you in some of my frames. Mr guy who wears black, okay. What'd you get? Albin: Don, I'm trying to think to look up.
David: Oh, well, yeah, just, there you go. Now, I mean, no, not the, don't feel like you have to force it. Just make sure you don't hunch down completely over there. There you go. That's nice. Let's take a look. This looks incredibly rich and layered. That, that all the warmth in here is really coming back.
(NOISE). Okay, remembering to look up on those early luntz where the, where the glow is nice. Now, I'm getting, I'm getting super picky in trying to make sure everything lines up at once. (NOISE). There we go. (NOISE). (SOUND) One more series like that and I think we got it.
Albin: Okay. David: And we'll swap up to the portrait. 'Kay. You're good, you're good. We're good. We're good.
If you want to finish what you're doing, if you want to finish up your project, I mean, you put some work into this. So we're, we're at your disposal. Albin: No, I'm at your disposal. David: No, I'm at your disposal. (LAUGH) This looks really, this looks really good, Alvin. Albin: Excellent. David: This dark room has really yielded to us, I think at this point, so.
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