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In this course, photographer and educator Erin Manning shows beginning photographers how to appreciate and work with natural light. First Erin takes a look at the qualities of light, from softness to direction to color, and details the camera settings that help you get the most out of the scene's available light. Then Erin works together with a student to shoot a natural-light portrait, employing inexpensive accessories such as reflectors along the way.
I'm here with my new student Winter. And she's had some challenges in taking photographs in bright sunlight. So I thought I'd bring her out here today and we'll be taking some more pictures of Josh. And I'll be showing her some tips and techniques to help her improve her photographs. Now Winter tell me some of the problems you've been having before in taking photos. >> I think my biggest challenge is the positioning of the photographs, whether there's too much sunlight, too much shadow or uneven skin tone. I just want to make it so I can see the person clearly and pronounced.
>> Yeah and make them look good. >> Yes, of course. That's my goal. >> All right. >> All right. >> Let's go do it. >> I want to do it. >> All right, let's go. >> Remember you can turn around and come back out or two. And Winter, feel free to give him some directions also. >> Okay, okay. Can you do a crouching thing too, like? >> Yeah. >> Good, good, good, good.
(SOUND) >> Oh, that's nice. (CROSSTALK) He's into the flowers. That's good. Interacting with his environment. >> (LAUGH) That's good. I like this that you're getting down and getting all these different angles. This is great. >> Very good I really like this picture. Nice strong. So this is what my problem is. >> >> He's looking he looks great.
>> Yeah. >> But. These shadows are just, they won't, they won't do. >> Yeah. Pretty harsh. >> They're very harsh. >> Well, here is, here's a little tip. I brought along a circular diffusion disc and I'll show you what it is. It comes zipped up in here and you just open it up, poof, like this. >> Alright. >> And what it is is white translucent fabric and I'm going to place this in between the harsh sunlight and Josh and I'll wait to see what happens. >> Okay. >> I'm going to step over here and I'm going to hold it up right between Josh and the harsh sun. Look at that.
>> Oh, my goodness. That's a whole difference. >> Quite a difference, isn't it? >> It's a amazing difference. Wow. >> So what's the first thing you noticed? >> Much softer. >> Mm-hm. >> Much softer. Even skin. >> And he can keep his eyes open. >> He can keep his eyes open, yes. That's the main thing. >> And so watch this. No diffuser. >> Yeah. >> Diffuser. >> Need the diffuser. >> Yeah, his eyes. >> A whole difference. >> Really pop. >> Much better. >> And as I kind of move it around and bring it closer to him.
>> He looks a little brighter. >> Oh, I see, okay. >> Uh-huh. I'm always keeping it between the sun and Josh. So if I'm going to take it away, I want to make sure I can completely cover him. So I don't want to do it partially. >> Okay. >> Right, you want to make sure you fully cover him. So if I hold it a little farther away. >> So it's always good if you can bring a friend with you on these photo shoots. >> I see, I was going to ask that. So you always bring maybe a friend with you to help hold that. >> Yeah. >> Okay. >> To hold up the diffuser and help out.
>> Alright, great Josh. >> You're still looking pretty good. >> Yeah, do you want to check some of them out? >> Yeah, let me take a look. >> Okay. >> Let's see. >> So. Oh nice. >> There's much more, like. >> Oh yes. >> The shadows are so much softer. >> His face looks great. >> And like, the light is just softer and that's what I like all about it. >> Nice job. >> It looks good. >> Okay. >> Thank you. Thank you, Josh. >> So this is diffusing light with the diffusion disc. >> Okay. >> Let me show you some other lighting scenarios where you can improve your photographs.
>> Thank you. I'm ready. >> Let's go. >> Let's go.
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