What happens when you fly half way across the world to shoot portraits of a model on an exotic beach, but then realize the light is not as soft or usable as you thought? In this video, learn how you can sculpt the natural light the way you want to create the most flattering results.
Light is the foundation of photography. It's all around us, but we must learn how to use it in every situation, that is the job of a photographer. When I was first starting out, I can remember only booking my shoots in the early mornings, or late evenings because of the warm and soft golden glow from those times. I will admit, I was genuinely scared of the sun at any other times of the day because I didn't know how to control it and use it to my advantage. Once I started to learn about how to use harsh natural light to create the look I wanted in my images, photography became a whole lot more fun.
In this informative video, released by world renowned portrait photographer and film maker, Sawyer Hartman, he takes you to the exotic beaches of Hawaii, and teaches you how to sculpt and manipulate the natural light in the scene to create beautifully lit portraits. Hartman goes through three simple steps to shaping light. First, the reverse sun technique, which makes use of the sun as a backlight and introduces a reflector in the front to fill in the shadows. Next, he shows you that using a door or window frame will convert the light into an eight by eight foot soft box. Lastly, by positioning the model at an angle to the sun, it helps define their features and showcases the contours of their bodies.
After watching this short video, one of the biggest things I took away was that you can make great images anywhere. You can create soft and studio-like light without being in a studio or lugging around expensive studio strobes. Personally, when I shoot my travel portraits, I am constantly placing them in the middle of a door frame to get the most even soft light. If you want to learn how to get the most out of shooting with window light, you can read my article here.
If you want to see more videos on lighting and photography related tips and tricks, check back each week to Sawyer's Youtube channel.