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5 Behaviors of Light: Relative Size Continued

Lesson 10 from: Picture Perfect Lighting

Roberto Valenzuela

5 Behaviors of Light: Relative Size Continued

Lesson 10 from: Picture Perfect Lighting

Roberto Valenzuela

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Lesson Info

10. 5 Behaviors of Light: Relative Size Continued


Class Trailer



Intro and Who This Class is For


3 Groups for All Lighting Scenarios


My Progress in Lighting


Analyzing Circumstantial Lighting


Circumstantial Lighting Q & A


Using a Reflector the Right Way


5 Behaviors of Light: Overview and Angle


5 Behaviors of Light: Inverse Square Law of Light


5 Behaviors of Light: Relative Size


5 Behaviors of Light: Relative Size Continued


5 Behaviors of Light: Color


5 Behaviors of Light: Reflective Surfaces


5 Behaviors of Light: Q & A


Location SWOT Analysis and 10 Things to Look For


Location SWOT Analysis: Examples and Exercises


Overview Q & A




Speedlites: The Basics and TTL


Speedlites: Manual Flash


Speedlites: Zoom Flash


Speedlites: Zoom and Rotating Flash Head and Reflectors


Speedlites: First Curtain vs. Second Curtain Sync


Speedlites: High Speed Sync


Speedlites: Optical vs. Radio Systems


Speedlites: Groups and Channels


Location Lighting Upgrade Examples


Indoor Lighting: Building on Ambient Light


Outdoor Lighting : Speedlights in Direct Sunlight


Outdoor Lighting: Using Speedlites in Shade


Outdoor Lighting: Romantic Look and Patterns with Speedlites


Indoor Lighting: Creating a Window with Strobes and a Curtain


Indoor Lighting: Moody Light with Speedlites and Gels


Indoor Lighting: Reflective Surfaces


Indoor Lighting: Shooting Against a Window


Indoor Lighting: Adding a Reference Point and Ambience


Indoor Lighting: Shooting into a Mirror and Creating Separation




Why You Need to Learn to Get it Right In Camera


Location Photo Review and Analysis


Intro to Reception Lighting SWOT Analysis


Reception Lighting Setup


Image Critique: Lighting Problems and Solutions


Don't Limit Yourself As A Photographer


Lesson Info

5 Behaviors of Light: Relative Size Continued

Let's do a quick ten seconds of what we talked about because I want us to be engraved in your heads and everyone's has the angle that the light hits the surface is the same exact angle asked when the light will reflect out of that surface that's it that applies that's important when you're shooting and you have a reflective surface if you want to maximize the amount of light hitting your subject, you've got to think where's the light coming from then mirror that angle and that will give you the optimal light that's pretty simple the second one we talked about was the inverse square law of light sounds very scary and it's very mathematic want all that but I made it so super simple if the light is very close to your subject all the light rays hit your subject the other side it goes completely dark because no light rays can recon rap they're all trapped by one side of the face then if your subject gets farther and farther away that fall off becomes a lot more. Even so if you have a person...

that's let's say an old they say you have an old lady you probably have two choices with an old person you can put them really close to the light source and turn your face towards the light thought all that intensity of light is here in their face kind of like this big window if I'm the old lady I would put I would put myself here and I would have the photo over show me this way so the light showers me with light okay if you wantto make that old lady look a little more sophisticated instead of just flat you want to give you some shape then simply grab that light whether it's window light or strobe also matter put the light in her face and just turned her face away from the light a little bit on the inverse square law of light will come into play because now once out of the face is farther from the other side so if I'm standing this way and I'm standing looking at the window both sides of my face are in equal distance to the window so it doesn't affect me I just I just look younger because the light feels you know the wrinkles and so forth as soon as I turn my face let's pretend this is the window as soon as I turn my face this way now this side is closer to the window then this side so the light's going to hit me here you're going to expose for that and in the light will fall off and give you some shadow here and then it makes somebody look a little bit nicer this behavior is the exact same whether you're dealing with the sun window light or a very light or a flash or a strong so for that uh we'll do a demonstration with a speed light. The fourth thing we talked about third is that as the light it's really close to your to a subject it creates that fall off that we just discussed but if the light source is really big, the edges off that light source are going to illuminate the shadow side that the light created when he was so close to do that and show that better take a look well that's really an interesting one they could look at this take a look at this life this light you see amanda has a nose on that blocks the light from the other side but if you look at it from a ball perspective you can see what happens you see the ball you see the speed like this right there that's a very small speed light because if you understand what I've been saying, what kind of photos that going to take, what is the fault of the ball going to look like if you were to fire this the light is going to hit here on because the light is so small it's going to be there's not going to be is going to be very harsh transition right it's going to illuminate this side and then it's going to go totally dark and it's gonna look really harsh because the light's too small if the light was bigger if we put a soft book let me show you it looks look at that harshness the flash illuminated here on because the light is so small it doesn't have access to the shadow areas cool, but if you put a soft box you make the light source a lot bigger, right? So it's still a flash, but you're putting a big soft books over the flash you're making that flash one hundred times its size. So now what do you think it's gonna look like? Yeah, the ages all the shadows are going to be a lot more gradual. So check this out. Look it's kind of like you don't even know where they start or where they begin. This is very important when you're shooting a person's face because if you want to make somebody look beautiful, you need to know where do you do you always wanna flat like them? Or do you want one side a little bit in shadow? If you do, you know where to position them according to the light on how big the life source should be to accomplish those things those are the two big the two big ones how how close the light is on how big this there were two big decisions um my good friend soup rice she shoots this beautiful beauty portrait of women what does she use mainly a lot of window light and then the flaps right like two big flames those flaps are nothing more than another light source they're just big light sources and they're very close toe the person so they're bouncing like this your illuminating the girl's face making her look younger and you get that beauty look right so those be flaps basically are making the light bigger if she didn't have those things that I would go smaller and then you would have something like the other ball okay yes so this is the this is the transition now let's look at this same exact soft books same one but instead of being really close to the ball now you put a far away from the ball let's go over what happens when you have the situation in this situation the light's going to kind of because the light is far away from the ball the fall ofthe light according to the inverse square law of light says that if the subject is very far away from the light source the light will be more even throughout there will be no big fall off right so you already know that this bowl is goingto have light in every direction the left and the right but because the light source is so far away are very few that only the middle so the middle of the soft books light illumined when it goes off it fires and it hits the ball but the corners go up into the ceiling on this corner goes up into the floor so it doesn't get around to reach the other side of the ball because the right lays are going somewhere else so you get this kind of look you know it's it's it's kind of like it's illuminated almost evenly I mean there's obviously a strong strong contrast there but it's still but the line here is very strong and compare that to the very gradual one when the lightest close okay, I just put a bigger one I switch the light the soft box from a small one toe a very large one and just to show you on, I put a very close look out gradual that's going to look how beautiful that looks now I surely actually say beautiful because that's relative maybe you don't want it to look like this maybe you wanted to look you up. Maybe you want to put a shadow on the person's face. Okay, okay. I mean that's just come up let's try a few things here. We're going to try a couple of items except instead of just showing you in the kino eye we're gonna demonstrate we're going to try this I would like to hear from I don't know maybe nicky you want to give it a shot if you look at this photo on the screen you notice that the light source is about medium sized and it's also very far away from her so let me ask you two questions and it's okay if you get it wrong we're all going we're all learning the inverse square law of light says that if the subject is far away the light will be more even in the exposure of the person right so what do you think the exposure will look like here I think it being lit here and I'll shadow here will be shot on here it will be completely crazy shadow because yeah uh it will be like you but what about the line of the shadow how is that gonna be? They're gonna be gradual or is it gonna be very harsh gradual wait now if it's too far it's going to be harsh closer it would be more because of this again if it's closer the corners off the soft books or whatever the light source is reaches the shadow side illuminating the shadows but if the light source is far far away this corner is no longer reaching that it's kind of reaching the floors going somewhere else okay so this is what you get karsh because the light rays are not reaching the shadows on this side okay let's bring the light closer no it is also the background is very white can us can anybody explain why the white why's the background so white in this rachel in this standoff second go ahead on because it's a bigger light source the light is going out because it's farther away by their way if it's farther away that even this becomes more even between the subject in the background right so does that make sense when the light is very close very close you would you put all the power in one side on the rest of the room goes dark right but when the light is far away it kind of throws the light evenly across the room making both sides of the person I mean making the subject on the background evenly lit this is very important for tomorrow because if we do the photo shoot and we're using flashes and stuff you're gonna need to know do you want the background to state dark or do you want the background to go brighter okay if I want to make that background darker what do you think tyler what do you think I would do if I don't want to make that background darker bring it closer yes again if you bring the light source closer all these light hits her not a lot of light spreads around okay so sorry too close too close so check it out now we're going to go from this distance to middle distance. And therefore the backgrounds you go twice as dark as he used to be on also the shot on her nose will probably be a little bit softer I don't want to confuse people but there isn't white snow so soft is because this is an umbrella I don't brother spreads light all over the place if this was a soft books it will be more direct light hitting her and it'll be softer but I don't want to go over that too much so let's just focus on that if I bring the light closer the background is going to go fifty percent darker look at the background now and now look at the background when I get even closer you think it's getting darker look at the great parts and look at the line here is a little softer on her nose now we're going to put the light source even closer now what do you think the background will look like mark when the light is so close to the subject it's gonna be dark because because of the fall off it's going to be a war when light happens right away she will be illuminated here the rest off her and the rest of the room just goes dark okay so here's what he looks like look at the background now completely dark cool um all right uh c can you help me out with this equipment one of things I wanted to teach in this car in this class it's howto achieve beautiful lighting without a ton of equipment naturally we have pra photo life and we have some equipment but now I'm going to teach you how to create the same beautiful light is this soft boxes without the soft box? Completely the reason why I want to teach that is because if you are an event photographer like if you shoot weddings or anything like that you're not going to be carrying around soft boxes like this on it's just impossible to carry around so I'm gonna teach you how to create fifteen soft boxes when you have no soft boxes it's actually quite fantastic and very useful as well on this as soon as you know the behavior of light this is gonna be super simple for you. Ok, so here the fifteen soft boxes um hopes strike this one. Wait, we have fifteen soft boxes on this guy cares how we do it? I'm gonna take my flash and I'm gonna take my diffuser when the flash hits the diffuser this becomes the light source not this anymore there's just like this gives birth to the light but the light source illuminating amanda w it actually this so let's see let's make this background totally dark and let's start to change the shape of her face but using these things if you want to make the lights or smaller like you you wanna have a smaller soft books simply put the flash close to the diffuser look how small the soft boxes right now is the size of the flash head now if I wanted if I say no I need a bigger soft books to feel some shadows what do you think you do that's it you just go like this I now when the light fires turn it on okay, look at this when the light fires that's the size of the soft books as soon as you go a foot away bigger soft books as soon as you get farther away bigger soft books I need people really far away the whole thing is a soft books okay, so let's see what happens? All right strike let's illuminate her with flash by itself right in her face actually listen to three quarter so let's go like a forty five degree angle so let's do something like here. Okay? If you know the behavior of light can a man that can you give it a shot off what this is going to look like before you take the picture and the reason why I put you on the spot it's because you should know what it's gonna look like before you take the picture remember, behaviour of light is very predictable you have a small light source very close to her what do you think that equals? You have really sharp falloff what else? What about the background? How is the background going to behave in a situation like this backgrounds going dog freaking awesome and the light source is very small so the fall of will be fast will be very quick but the shadows are going to be very harsh because is such there's no light source that there's no light illuminating the shadows so it's going to be like super crazy sharpe okay he's going to be very not attractive at all don't worry there's only like twenty people watching it's okay um are you in manual power? What? It's okay, I got it. You and teo is that grouping I went toe one eighth power don't worry about if you're watching don't worry about the flash settings I'm gonna explain that next um next uh what you call it nice segment okay, this is about the behavior of light we worry about the other stuff later sorry don't put that up yet. Let me change the let me change my settings here, let me try that one more time hold on. Okay, you can put that up now cool get a lot of that nose shadow okay that is being created because the flash is so small that the the light can or reach the shadow side that the light is creating that's it okay? And this is just not this is very harsh now let's put this she let me think one more without without I wanted people to see a little bit cleaner there see? We can show that now you really see the shadow? I know that very clearly. Okay? You think a picture like this and you're like gosh, I don't know what to do with that stupid shatter like it's just so awful looking all you have to remember is if there's a shadow there is because there's not enough light illuminating that shadow how do you create that life? You made the light source bigger on dh that's it it's not that hard so let's make it bigger forty five degree to her face let's make it closer so let's do it by steps only put a light really close to the diffuser on now let's, try it so this is going to be a soft this is gonna be a very small light source but it's gonna be a little bit better sorry don't put that up yet. Okay, good help better that nose looks starting to get clean a wrench. Let me see if we can assume that or something or there you go you see the shadow starts to disappear in the nose let's make the soft books bigger now let's grab all you have to do is put that flash farther away from the diffuser I now you're basically using more of the surface area ok stride again forty five degree angle took her face andi let's try this you know those tres quatro cinco cinco safe from europe's are you goingto great? Ok let's put that one up not that one but that one look how starts to soft and also yeah that's really that's starting to look pretty pretty let's do it far as far away as possible ok let me ask you something if I want to make this even softer and this is the only day future you have what do you do? Anybody sorry you're actually not anybody you have to stand up and say take just put the soft box or the diffusion closer and that changes the relative size to her face awesome so let's put that right here more I'm just going to basically grabbed my camera and I'm barely miss it based on the future okay, so when I do that that's gonna be far away let's see what this looks like it's gonna look issue look, look how soft her face he looks very nice and soft right now let's do something kind of interesting let's make the background go dark okay, so come this way stand right there let's say I don't want to show this texture of this war I want to get I want to remove it is too distracting for me. I need to put the light source close or far away close because a falloff will make it go dark rain so let's put that close to her face lumi nate her from here like that this becomes we can make that window bigger. Okay that's good and then pointed. Yeah it's like that? No, this way that way. Okay, let's see if this come farther away right there just a little bit. Okay, that background should go a lot darker than that. Now. Now, she's. A little dark, but we can adjust this try again now we just opened up the aperture which opened lets more light in on dh you still get totally dark background cool. Well, not totally dark chickens to be further away from it. But does that make sense? Okay, um can I borrow a guy for a second? Can I borrow you or you just write you for a second? Let's? Bring a chair. Bring your chair over. Guys, quick question. This is going to be interesting. If you answer right, you see that photo that I just put up, how you can still see the background what would be the best way to make sure that the background goes dark what what what do we need to do you can you stand right over there for a sec what do we need to do to make that back and go darker bring the light source closer to her we need to yes but we need to increase the intensity ofthe light on her right so if I wanted to make that darker I'm going to just make the flash brighter that way the exposure is really strong in her face and the rest goes into darkness because I have two exposed exposed is such a bright spot okay so I'm going to change my flash exposure which I'll explain destruction standings I'm going to go toe full power okay? We're not changing the rest of what happened here we're just making the great then you have a window with a lot of sun coming through it and if you put the person really close to that window which is full of sun let's say you're in arizona or something this is the equivalent to this ok so stand here it's fine let's put that flashback where we were is going to be full power now let's see mmm mmm mmm mmm mmm too bright alone on that one should do upset helen alan should do it not that one well actually that was pretty good to kind of like the mid you know so she's exposed perfectly but the background started to go away if you want to make this even more powerful then just increase the power increase the flash even more and more and more and then the back rangers will go into darkness okay cool um all right uh let's sit over here for a second all right joshua so this remove the hat for a sec I know you know what let's make it a cool example is put the hat back on this heart is going to cost a shadow on under his eyes right we don't want the shadow to be too crazy we went the shadow to be there to make it that mysterious look but we wanted to be soft or you have to know is the same priest stupid silly behaviors we've been talking about so why do we need to do to make the shadow appear but soft in it what is the setup what would this set of have to be kind of you want to give it up I mean uh care you want to give it a shot you wanted to be softer yeah we're gonna put the light we're going to make the light come from here so the shadow gets created by the hat this is the way I think when I'm shooting a portrait I'm like there's only few behaviors of light is not complicated I want to take advantage off the hat the hat I think I'd be kind of cool to put a shadow under his eyes, but I don't want the shadow to be so strong that it looks like like cheap sunlight or something like that. I want to look like a sophisticated look. So what do I need to make that happen? Largely? Yeah. Large light source on how close? Close. Okay, so the large light source is going to basically no, sorry the closeness is going to cost that transition, toby very quick, but the closeness or the size of the light source was going soft in the shower to be a little bit brighter. It won't be the super black line, of course his face. Okay, so let's, put the diffuser here. Let's do a forty five to his hat can maybe someone, uh, baby, can you help him a little bit so he doesn't have to hold it over him called it from this side. Sorry. Um I don't know what you give me a quick second, okay? We have a big light source on it's close, but to make what I want happened, I needed closer I went the shadow to be softer. Okay, so we're gonna go soft closer that's going to go right now it's gonna go like right here, okay, let me see let's move your chair a little bit this was like in so I can get the cool but the background right there good. Can you adjust your heart a little bit lean forward I just you had a little bit okay, good. Stay like that at school. Just stay there. Okay? Give me a sec look at the camera real quick and I need to adjust the light just wanna make sure oh, crap sorry helen I'm sorry this is firing I need to remove that try again look at the camera eyes let's see what this looks like? You don't have to post that one yet. Bring that closer this way remove your hand lean forward towards me just want a little shot on his eyes and I want to be soft see how the isar and the little bit of shadow but he's soft now let's do it the other way let's put the flash directly over his hat now we're making the lights or smaller I'm we're also putting a further away so it's going to look for the bad strike again? Fire yeah pretty can awesome. Okay, take a look at that and this is what happens when you don't understand behavior it's simple behaviour of light um let's make him look mysterious uh let's put the diffuser back over here in this room you with the hat backwards or something keep your back straight need forward towards me we're gonna add a little bit we're going to make him look nice okay super nice I know it's a lot of work but we'll try okay let's try this by this I can tell he's about twelve inches from the diffuser so he's not utilizing the fool the fool capacity so we're going to make this flash further away okay if you cannot see what he's doing the future is here flashes as far away as possible I want the background to sort of show but I want him to look really cool and manly and I want a little shot on his face okay so let's see turn your face towards me a little more you're bringing sexy back all the way brother it's nice alright no smile let's see let's take a look at that and then when I asked you how to correct it okay look at the cool lighting on his face now if I don't do this if I just exposed for him we turn this thing off look what look what I get compare that to something like that just you know get people do this they're like wow it's ok we have a lot of window look I'll have him turn his face towards the window and look what happens it's gonna look better right but he won't look finessed sorry my mind I'm gonna have you move a little bit okay take a look better much better but not completely finessed okay um let's put that light back on his face this way we're going to keep it the same as this but we're going to add ten percent off sophistication off lighting we're not going to change the way this looks we're going to add ten percent of hot sauce to the lights okay let's go back again put the face towards the light get the light again we're gonna put this closer to him now you stay like that you're good he's going to bring that the future closer and now turned us on I'm gonna lower the power of the flash and I'm going to keep this size big and so forth good we're going to keep this picture we're gonna make it just a tad better okay, try this too much hold on a second I gotta lower the flash power there are more okay good let's try that again. Okay? Just think check ticket take a look at that okay? This is what I do in my jobs I have a nice window it's good but I could make it a little bit better I guess that's the king of the key to this class is you make you can do what everyone does or you could make it a little bit better can we compare this one toe not the last one but the one before that he's got he's got it like there that one to the one I just took yeah, okay, this one on the right needs a little bit of adjustment on the exposure but which one do you guys like more? Which one pop sport to you one on the right and that's what? This is about it's about that extra little let me do that one more time because I think it's too hot but we'll keep it we're gonna finesse it okay? So large soft books good let's try one more time beautiful. Now take a look at this this to me is the way it should be okay? And then we can figure if we can compare the window shot with just this one if you're watching on the internet you notice how there's no there's very little shadow off his nose you made it look like well you didn't you made it look like it's a beautiful light source but it's just a little bit better then the natural light compared this. Compare those two you see what I mean the last one and this one here with a window think he was this one this one if I want more shadow on decide the thesis important because this is what the classes about amanda I want more shot on this side what do I need to do? Decrease the size of the lion yes you can make the light source farther away and it will do that what else could you do moving closer you two make it closer so there's a more of a fall off let's try let's make that side of his face fall off a little bit so it's not so even okay let's try it we're in the same place sorry trying the one time you don't have to put that one maybe that was also there were two too much but take a look at the difference in this in this one not that one uh the last one you're adding shape to his face now all we did was make the light source farther away or make the lights or smaller so if we put this light source here he'll look let's do that actually mr point it right there now if you're if you're watching at home or what I'm doing is making the lights or smaller that's it if the light source is smaller is goingto is going to cost that there's gonna be really strong shadows here okay, just a sec oh god I mean you're not hideous or anything but the picture look there's just flicking the lights or smaller this is what you get so if you think about it with this that what we're doing here, you could create any look you want you could shape anybody however you want, it doesn't matter uh, you can make it look like natural light and just add a little pop off light with a flash. Okay, cool. Thank you. Thanks, man. All right, let's, try you again. Don't go ahead and move the color thing here. Way have gone over. The angle of incidence equals the angle of reflection. We discuss how that affects you. We also discussed the inverse square law flight which talks about the fall of off light. Really? And how much intensity of the light changes? We also discussed the third one, which is the relative size of the light source and how that affects the shadows. Because the bigger the light source the stuff to the shadows will be the same shadows that the inverse square law of, like created that relative size can manipulate them. He can make it can make him stronger. They can. They can go softer. Ok, we talked about crafting somebody's face, so if you wanna shoot an older person, make her look young, you just shower them with a light in front of them. But if you want to make one side of her face darker than the other, change the life source. So the windows on this side and it creates distance between this side of the face and this side of the face, making this side darker

Class Materials

Bonus Materials with Purchase

10 Elements to Look For at a Location

Ratings and Reviews


Im sitting in my office listening to Roberto with my earplugs on and I know I have already left 2 reviews but he's so funny…. my family comes into the office asking me "whats so funny" Roberto makes me laugh out loud with his jokes but at the same time, he is SO great at teaching. Im watching for second time to make sure all his good info is ingrained. HIGHLY recommend you take his workshop on Picture Perfect Lighting if you truly want to take your photography to the next level! WOW thats 3 reviews now…can you tell I am impressed

Maureen T.

I'm taking a portrait photography course at NYIP online. one of the mentors there recommended the posing book by Roberto. I ended up ordering at the library the posing and the perfect practice book. I fell in love with both books...ended up buying them and signing up here for the year membership just so I can take all of his photos courses. I spent most of my weekend doing perfect lighting course here I am in love with the way that he teaches! He makes something so difficult and challenging for me make sense. I also like that he challenges us photographers to be true professionals. I am thrilled to have discovered Roberto and already noticed my photography is better in the short time that I've been studying him.


Roberto has the personaliyy and gift to relate to others.He is honest and shared some of rhe disaters that occurred, even with high paying and important clients when he failed to follow his proven and tested approaches. He has shared from his extensive knowledge developed by hard work and effort to master his craft. His dedication in attacking his weaknesses and making them a strength is inspiring. I have purchased many CL classes and all have worth the investment so I hesitated to purchase this course because I didn't think there was much new information. However the clear teaching and extensive knowledge shared by Roberto in his unique style caused me to purchase it gladly and believe it is an exceptional value. Roberto has shared his extensive tools, but you will never be the master of the craft without putting in the hard work and testing that roberto testified to. Thanks again CL for bringing the best to us and Thank you Roberto for taking the time and preparation to achive excellance in in this class.

Student Work