It's a good thing I recently backed up all of my data.
I'll be offline for the most part until it comes back from its trepanation.
This is one of my submissions for the first assignment in the Strobist Lighting 102 Workshop going on right now. This assignment focuses on light position, how it affects the look of your photo, and how to pre-visualize what a scene will look like before you press the shutter.
For this series of shots of Pacifica, I had the flash set up on a stand positioned 4 feet away at about 100 degrees to the camera. Putting my eye right where the flash was at (example here) showed a perfect profile of the face which meant the other side would be completely in shadow, illuminated only by the ambient light (a very warm tungsten balanced florescent lamp) which was underexposed by several stops because of the shutter was set to the maximum flash sync speed of 1/200. The result is a dramatic shot with the profile of the figure cleanly highlighted and yet not overexposed.
One thing I noticed is that my cheap Hong Kong special radio triggers add considerable delay to the flash, enough so that the right side of the frame (the bottom, if the camera were in landscape orientation) is much darker due to the second shutter curtain crossing the sensor before the flash fires. This means that I'll have to limit my max flash sync speed to 1/160 when using the PT-04 V2 or use a sync cable.
Or I can spend $320 on a set of Pocket Wizards.
I think I'll just live with it for now.
This is one of my first attempts at using my new light stand and umbrella setup. The advantage of using an umbrella to bounce the light of the flash is that it gives you softer shadows and a more even light. If you compare this to the previous shot of the go board, you can see that there aren't any sharp shadows. In fact, Arisa isn't casting hardly any kind of shadow at all. The light was placed camera left and almost even with the figure and angled at 45 degrees which created a nice soft side-lit look and a slender shadow down her left side which helps pull her away from the background. Click through for more information and to get a link to a photo of the lighting setup.
My first attempt at off-camera strobing. First off, I have to say that David Hobby is my hero and I would follow him to death and back. Oooo-kay. His site teaches you how to improve your photography through the use of off-camera lighting. Where others would recommend spending thousands on studio monobloc lighting, he shows you how to achieve similar results using sub-$100 used flashes (external strobes) like the Nikon SB-24.
This was lit very simply with a single strobe (my new Canon 430 EX) triggered with cheap radio transmitters bought from some guy in Hong Kong. They're not the most reliable of things, but they cost less than a dinner for two -- unlike the professional radio triggers, PocketWizards, which cost $180... Each. And you'd have to buy two of them to trigger a single strobe.
The photo is of exercise 151 (or was it 152?) from Getting Good at Shape. Black's next move to secure shape on the left side is to put White's stone into atari.