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Photography was something that from an early age it felt right to me, and more…importantly it made me happy.…And one of the very, very earliest pictures that I shot got published in the New…York Times Sunday Book Review, and the Times paid me the princely sum of $25,…which at that time was a fortune, and that was a great experience.…And I also had a chance to photograph William Manchester, who at that time was…writing Death of a President about John F. Kennedy who had been assassinated…about two years earlier, and those pictures got published.…
So I learned very early on, A, that I was good at photography and I shot nice…pictures and that there was a market to do the kind of work that I did.…Even though I was living in a relatively small place like Middletown, but it was…halfway between Boston and New York.…And so I made a lot of weekend trips back and forth between Boston and New York.…Fairly early on during a geographic story I had a chance to meet the man who I…consider to be the smartest human being I've ever met, the absolutely great…
In this installment, Jim shows how to shoot outdoors during twilight, what photographers refer to as the magic hour. He goes on location to create an exterior photo of a busy pizzeria, employing five wireless strobes strategically placed both inside the building and on its exterior.
His approach to lighting the scene involves balancing all of the scene’s light sources—the twilight from the sky, the interior light of the pizzeria, the existing lights on the outside of the building, and the output of his strobes—in such a way that the final photo doesn’t appear to have any special lighting at all. He demonstrates a variety of inexpensive lighting tools—clamps, gels, and other light modifiers—to accomplish this goal.
Also discussed is the importance of planning and setting up ahead of time to maximize shooting time when the light is waning. The course wraps up with tips on planning for gear, estimating the amount of time available to shoot, shooting in manual mode, and using a camera's histogram to judge exposure.
- Preparing for a shoot
- Using light modifiers, clamps, and other lighting accessories
- Changing the quantity, aim, and color of strobes to balance existing light
- Using twilight calculators to estimate available time
- Manually adjusting aperture and shutter speed
- Composing the shot
- Assessing the results
- Tips to remember for outdoor sessions