Friday, February 24, 2012

Photo Friday #5.....

"Finding the Light".....this seems to be the hardest aspect of photography to master.    It should be easy, it should be second nature, I feel like I should know exactly where to place people and where I should stand to shoot.....but I don''s hard.....I haven't quite figured it out.  I have to search for the light....I have to think about which direction the sun is coming from, then figure out how to place my subject.  I have to take a moment and think it through, which is a challenge when trying to photograph a toddler!!

It's so important to master this skill because it affects every part of your photo....The lighting situation will either give you an amazing photo, or a really blah one!  After reading about 1000 articles on the "best way to find the light" here is what I have concluded.....

1.  Place your subject by a window or door on a sunny or partly sunny day....(this one is kinda a given)
2.  If you are shooting a person, watch for the catch lights in their eyes.  A catch light is that pretty sparkly refection you get in the eye when the light hits it perfectly!
3.  To find the catch lights, have your subject stand near a window, then have them rotate slowly in a circle until you see the sparkle.  That's when you know you have "found the light"
5.  If you have an assistant pull out your reflector.  

Keeping these rules in mind I think I have successfully "found the light" in my house!!  

Look at those catch lights!!!!  This photo just makes me smile!  The trick to keeping a toddler still is giving them snacks!!!
ISO 800, 1/160sec at f/2.8, 50mm 1.4 lens

You can even find the catch lights in your pets .... Jules giving Max some love....
ISO 800, 1/125sec at f/2.8, 50mm 1.4 lens

This is Max thinking....."put the camera down already".....
ISO 800, 1/160sec at f/1.8, 50mm 1.4 lens

beautiful natural light.....
ISO 800, 1/30sec at f/2.8, 50mm 1.4 lens

As you can see....I had to bribe with more snacks......But after seeing those eyes it was totally worth it!
ISO 640, 1/250sec at f/2.0, 50mm 1.4 lens

No catch lights here, but beautiful natural light bouncing off of her pretty face!
ISO 800, 1/200sec at f/7.1, 50mm 1.4 lens

Now it's your turn!!  Go open those windows and "find the light"


  1. These are beautiful! Great advice. Two of the hardest subjects, toddlers and dog but both perfect here :)

  2. What beautiful images! I love that second shot!!

  3. Oh my golden doodle goodness! That photo of Max giving you "the look" is priceless!


  4. A wealth of information here, Jess. And I love how you followed the steps to achieve these marvelous photos. Well done! :)

  5. Hi there, thanks so much for visiting my blog. These photos of your cute girl and sweet dog are beautiful!! So pleased I stopped by and learned a few things about lighting - so excited to learn how to get a "catch light" going to try this on my little toddler this week! Thanks!

  6. These are so fabulous! I love them all. Thanks for the tips. I am learning and I have already found that turning off the flash is the best thing I can do to achieve better to find a sunny window. Oh my!

  7. Yes, it's all about the light. And these were just perfect. Your daughter is precious and oh the dog!

    Blessings to you♥

  8. i just rearranged my bedroom because it gets the best light in my house and i needed a spot to put the toddlers for photos. catchlights changed my life. your photos are lovely. that one of max is priceless.

  9. These are beautiful! I love that you shared your settings! I have a link up on my blog every Tuesday to share inspiring pics or photo tips, you should stop by--this post would be perfect!

  10. look at her eyes! so beautiful!

  11. Such cute photos. Her eyes are amazing! Great job with the lighting. Thank you for sharing!

  12. You are right, learning to see the light is not as simple as you would think it is. The first photo is too cute! She is an angel and you captured her pretty eyes so well!

  13. You have some great tips here, and lovely photos!