Before we get into WATR and Part 2 of my PSW Workbook I want to announce that I am having my 2nd DAVE BLACK LIGHTPAININTING WORKSHOP in Loveland, CO. this Fall: October 22-24, 2015. Just “click” the listing in the Home Page Menu or “click” this link for all the information and registration details.
http://www.daveblackphotography.com/lightpainting-workshop-with-dave-black/ Come join me and learn how to Lightpaint at my 3 day Workshop this Fall in beautiful Colorado.
Okay…welcome to another unique edition of WATR. My July and August WATR articles will feature my PSW Workbook of instructional content for my classes at Photoshop World 2015 in Las Vegas. Use this special PSW link: http://psw2015.eventbrite.com/?aff=PSWDaveBlack and Discount Code: DaveBlack50 to save BIG money when you register for this year’s largest Photography, Lightroom, and Photoshop event of the year.
My 2015 Photoshop World class schedule is:
August 10 … Lightpaint the Town …a PSW Workshop SOLD OUT
August 11 …11:00am – 12:00pm Lightpainting: “Let There Be Light”
August 11 …6:00pm – 7:00pm: Shark Tank Critique
August 12 …9:30am – 10:30am: Speedlights: OFF Camera Flash on Location
August 12 …10:45am – 11:45am: Sports Action with Speedlights and High Speed Sync
August 12 …7:30pm – 9:30pm: Art of Digital Panel
August 13 …1:00pm – 2:00pm: Sports Photo Lab
With all of my Day 1 Photoshop World class instructional material posted in last month’s July 2015 WATR article, let’s move on to my PSW 2015 class schedule for Day 2 and Day 3.
DAY 2 Wednesday August 12, 2015 …9:30am – 10:30am
Speedlights: OFF Camera FLASH on Location:
Good morning and welcome to Day 2 of Photoshop World 2015 …This class is for anyone at any level of photography who wants to learn how to use Speedlights OFF Camera for portraits on location.
Let me introduce you to my favorite piece of lighting gear …the FourSquare mount, handle, and soft box made by Lightware www.lightwaredirect.com The FourSquare holds up to 4 Speedlights and has a removable front screen making it easy to use in the studio or outdoors in breezy conditions.
I use the SANYO Eneloop rechargeable AA batteries to power my Speedlights. At FULL power a fresh set of Eneloop AA batteries will give you approx. 275 flashes and have a recycle time 2.3 seconds between each “FLASH”.
Each Speedlight is set in the REMOTE mode. I tend to use Manual power settings, but i-TTL is fine too. I use the Nikon SU-800 Commander to fire my Speedlights when they are located OFF Camera. Because Nikon Speedlights are an infrared system I will sometimes use the RadioPopper wireless system to fire my Speedlights if the sun is interrupting the infrared signal, or if the distance of the camera with SU-800 Commander is more than 60 feet from my OFF Camera Speedlights.
HERE IS my OFF Camera Lighting Configuration:
“Make a Triangle” with the 3 points being: your camera, your subject, and your Speedlight. It is the OFF Camera angle of light that reveals the texture of your subject and attracts the eye of the viewer.
Images 2A, 2B, 2C Equestrian Portrait …
HERE IS my OFF Camera Lighting FORMULA using 1 Nikon Speedlight:
Image 2A: STEP 1 … Make a perfect exposure (No Flash). Nikon D800, ISO1000, 1/250 at f5.0, WB 6250K, NO FLASH. You can use a Manual Exposure by using the in-camera meter, or you can use a Program mode like Aperture Priority.
I will usually do this Manually by decreasing the ISO by 1.3 stops, or if I’m using a setting like Aperture Priority I can decrease the EV by -1.3.
Image 2C: STEP 3 … Add “FLASH” from 1 Speedlight placed OFF Camera (remember to make the Triangle). Nikon D800, ISO400, 1/250 at f5.0, WB 6250K, 1 Nikon SB-910 Speedlight i-TTL power output +1.3, Nikon SU-800 Commander mounted to the camera hot shoe …the FourSquare with 1 SB-910 Speedlight is 5 feet in front of the subject just out of the right edge of the picture. In general, if I have purposely underexposed the picture by -1.3, I will need to increase the power output of the Speedlight by +1.3.
By using a Triangle configuration and my simple 3 step formula, your images will take on a new dynamic presence and start you on your way to making beautiful lit images on location.
Image 3 Horn Man … Nikon Df (retro camera), ISO200, 1/250 at f6.3, Nikon 24-70mm lens, WB 4000, 1 SB-910 Speedlight with Full CTO orange warming gel …manual 1/2 power output, FourSquare with Grid, Nikon SU-800 Commander, SanDisk 32G Extreme Pro Flash Card.
This image of a jazz musician makes use of the same OFF Camera Lighting Triangle configuration as the Equestrian Portrait. The difference: I have used a cool-blue WB of 4000K to extenuate the cool morning fog. Then I used the Full CTO orange warming gel that comes with the Nikon Speedlight to add warm color to the subject.
The warm orange color provided by the gel adds just enough “warmth” so that the subject looks like golden hour sunset light is illuminating him.
NOTE: Placing any light modifier (soft box, umbrella, colored gel, etc.) in front of the Speedlight and or if your Speedlight is too far from the subject will diminish the amount of light that is illuminating the subject. Thus, an increase of flash power output will be required, or additional Speedlights will be necessary to illuminate your subject from the underexposed scene.
Image 4 Nikon D200, ISO160, 1/40 at f9.0, WB 4000K, Nikon 24-70mm lens, 1 SB-800 Speedlight with Full CTO orange warming gel …i-TTL power output +1.7 (placed on a tree stump 10 feet to the left just out of the picture, Nikon SU-800 Commander, SanDisk 16G Extreme Pro Flash Card.
OFF Camera Speedlights can be used for more than just portraiture. While on a job in Pennsylvania I found this small landscape scene. I loved the misty pond, but felt some warm light from a single Speedlight placed OFF Camera to the left of the row boat would help create some mood.
Here again I have used the Triangle Configuration for OFF Camera Lighting. I have also once again used a cool-blue WB of 4000K to extenuate the cool misty morning. Then I used the Full CTO orange warming gel that comes with the Nikon Speedlight to add warm color to the subject.
NOTE: These 3 Speedlight images made use of the Triangle Configuration: Camera – Subject – OFF Camera Speedlight.
NOTE: And also my 3 step lighting FORMULA: Make a perfect picture – Purposely underexpose the picture by -1.3 stops – Add FLASH with +1.3 power output from 1 Speedlight placed OFF Camera *don’t forget to make a triangle)
Well, I hope you have enjoyed this teaching how to use Speedlights OFF Camera on location. My next class is … Sports Action with Speedlights and High Speed Sync.
Wednesday August 12, 2015 …10:45am – 11:45am
Sports Action with Speedlights and High Speed Sync:
This class is for any photographer wanting to learn about using Speedlights in High Speed Sync mode for photographing Sports Action.
Image 5A Triangle Configuration … Nikon D810, ISO1000, 1/1600 at f8, Nikon 14-24mm lens, WB 3030K, 4 Nikon SB-910 Speedlights Manual Full Power with Warming Gels mounted in the FourSquare Soft Box, Painters Pole used as a lightstand, RadioPopper system, Nikon SU-800 Commander, SanDisk 32G Extreme Pro Flash Card.
Nikon users need to set the camera to AUTO FP 1/250s in the Custom Settings Menu under Bracketing/Flash …(Canon users activate High Speed Sync directly on your Speedlite.) These procedures for each unit activates the High Speed Sync feature which enables the Speedlights to perform at shutter speeds faster than 1/250 of a second so you can stop the action.
NOTE: These Action images made with Nikon Speedlights in High Speed Sync Mode make use of the same Triangle Configuration: Camera – Subject – OFF Camera Speedlights.
NOTE: And also my 3 step Lighting FORMULA: Make a perfect picture – Purposely Underexpose the picture by -1.3 to -2.0 stops – Add FLASH from 1 Speedlight placed Off Camera (remember to make the Triangle).
NOTE: Sometimes for more drama I will purposely underexposed the image by -2.0 or more …doing this will require increasing the FLASH power, and if that doesn’t illuminate the subject add additional Speedlights to illuminate your action subject.
Image #5B Moto Stormer … Nikon D810, ISO1000, 1/1600 at f8, Nikon 14-24mm lens, WB 3030K, Nikon 4 SB-910 Speedlights Manual Full Power with Warming Gels mounted in the FourSquare Soft Box, Painters Pole used as a lightstand, , Nikon SU-800 Commander, SanDisk 32G Extreme Pro Flash Card.
By purposely underexposing the image by -2.0 the scene becomes very dark. And I have also used the Warming Gels on each Speedlight which also reduces the illumination of the subject. And my Speedlights need to be a “safe” distance from my subject. Thus I will need to use 3-4 Speedlights at Manual Full Power output to illuminate my action subject and reveal him from a very dark exposed scene.
Image 6 Soccer Dive … Nikon D800, ISO160, 1/2000 at f5.6, Nikon 14-24mm lens, WB 6250K, 3 Nikon Speedlights each at Full Power, FourSquare Softbox, Nikon SU-800 Commander, RadioPopper system, SanDisk Extreme Pro 32G Flash Card.
Over powering the sun and using shutter speeds greater than 1/250 requires a lot of light (3-4 Speedlights) very close to the action subject (6-8 feet.) For this image the FourSquare Softbox is being held about 4 feet off the ground and about 7 feet from the subject. These two factors help to overpower the sunshine and use High Speed Sync with a fast Shutter Speed of 1/2000.
Wednesday August 12, 2015 …7:30pm – 9:30pm
Art of Digital Panel:
My last class on Day 2 is the Art of Digital Panel that features several photography and Photoshop instructors including Jim DiVitale, Julieanne Kost, Joe McNally, Moose Peterson, Joe Glyda, Stacy Pearsall …and I’m on the panel too.
This is an awesome evening where just about everyone at PSW floods into the BIGGEST ballroom to learn from each instructor as they share images and commentary about current projects and convey some personal stories about their lives and careers as professionals in the industry.
This is a MUST session for everyone at PSW to attend, be entertained, and to learn from. I hope to see all of you at the Art of Digital Panel: Wed. Aug. 12 at 7:30pm – 9:30pm
Well, that wraps up my “marathon” of classes on DAY 2 of Photoshop World 2015 in Las Vegas, Nevada.
NEXT: My PSW 2015 class schedule for Day3.
Day 3 Thursday August 13, 2015 …1:00pm – 2:00pm
Sports Photo Lab:
This class is for Sports Photographers of any level.
Day 3 features a NEW class for me called Sports Photo Lab from 1:00pm – 2:00pm. Don’t let the title fool you, I am not teaching Photoshop or Lightroom skills …after all I only know the Paint Bucket Tool ☺ … but I guarantee this is a class that Sports Photographers will want to attend.
This class is very small and is limited to only 40 participants. Registration for the labs is free and will be filled on a first-come, first served basis. Primarily this class offers one-on-one time for me to more personally meet with photographers who cover Sports.
Perhaps you want me to critique a few of your images, or maybe you are working on a personal sports project, or it might be a question on what gear to shoot a particular sport. Whatever it is bring your laptop and show me you’re BEST in sports imagery. I look forward to seeing many of you and working together at my Sports Photo Lab class on Thursday August 13, 2015 …1:00pm – 2:00pm.
WOW, it’s going to be an AMAZING week of learning at Photoshop World 2015 in Las Vegas, Nevada. I’m stoked to meet as many people as possible so please come up and say hello.
A BIG THANKS to Scott Kelby and everyone at KelbyOne and Photoshop World that makes this conference the BEST in the world! See you all in Fabulous Las Vegas! Dave