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Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Using Your Shadow in Block Bright Sunlight for Soft Light Portrait Photography

I was photographing Ellie at Baldwin Beach about about 5 minutes before the sunset and the harsh glow was turning her into a carrot! (see photo #1) I could have asked her to stand on the other side of the palm tree so she was in the shade BUT that would mean she would either be in too much darkness OR she would be backlit. I wanted the picture to be soft light — not glowy or shadowy. So I stood directly in front of her with my back to the sun. (see photo #2). The sun was still sneaking over my left shoulder so I held the camera in my right hand and held my left hand over my head to block that little sliver of cheeky light. There was lots of wiggling around on my part (and muscle strain in my right arm to hold the camera steady one-handed haha) trying to find the sweet spot but eventually I found it and snap! A perfectly soft portrait! (see photo #3) LOVE IT! Thank you Hawaii for giving me so many opportunities to learn how to shoot in bright sunlight! Try it and let me know if this works when you're shooting up north in places like Scotland! :)