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Image Critique: Lighting Problems and Solutions

Lesson 40 from: Picture Perfect Lighting

Roberto Valenzuela

Image Critique: Lighting Problems and Solutions

Lesson 40 from: Picture Perfect Lighting

Roberto Valenzuela

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Lesson Info

40. Image Critique: Lighting Problems and Solutions


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

Image Critique: Lighting Problems and Solutions

If anything, this segment is going to give you that little extra token of mental thought, like, okay, if I would have done this here, I would have gotten this much more out of it on instead of using my photos. Uh, it's, just more practical for me to use other photographers photographs on go with that if I if I feel like the photo was done in the way I would, the way I see it or whatever, I don't see anything that I would change, I want to say that it's like, hey, this is looks great, like I don't change anything, um, but I'm just going based on what I see on the screen. If you want to get really good at critiquing your own images, start pulling out images from france or goto websites or whatever I always do this inside george photography competition so much I'm always looking at the lighting and the posting and the composition ofthe images and you're you're I just becomes more keen at finding details, so when you are shooting it's not like you're totally oblivious to what's going on. I...

f you keep seeing people's photographs, you train yourself to see your bad for us. You will be like, okay, I could have done this here better. This could have been done better. People always has me. Roberto, how did you get good? Or how do you improve for whatever I tell you? Well, when you're preparing classes to teach, you have to talk about what you did wrong so your brain has to be forced to say, where is what's wrong here and then you find it and then your brain is to say, how could you fix that? So I think because I've done that for so many times, you just, uh, naturally become more detail oriented when it comes to that. So we know for no further to do let's go ahead and start. I'm also going to demonstrate a little bit if I see a technique that's easy, the eiken demonstrate easily. I'll just demonstrate it real fast. Okay, so the first photo here it's actually really nice when one of the things that is good about these pictures, that photographer here picked the tan colored grass to put them in front ofthe. If the photographer would have chosen the green grass in the back on it, it would have had a little bit more of a color caste casted on their face because it's the tan color looking well looking things, it actually doesn't have that issue however I mean this doesn't have anything to do with it but when you do have this just be careful we thinks crossing people's faces and so forth but in terms of lighting it's actually quite nice it's it's it's flat lighting nothing wrong with it here's the big issue with this photo when you look at this nice family picture you can't help but see that crazy highlight on the left side so even though there is some good points to it if you choose a location like this remember the first day when I was telling you about how you choose locations and there was that row greenery and there was a tree but there was that hot spot on the sidewalk and I circled it that's the same situation here if you if you put your subjects here and then you see behind you behind them and you see this son hitting the grass directly probably not a good choice you know nothing is going to be stronger than the sun hitting an object directly you're not going to put so much lights on your subjects that are going to compete with that so you're going to lose so basically you look at this nice picture and then you see this super bright stuff the only suggestion is you get that greenery on the right side you could have easily just grabbed your family moved him a little bit to the right and you would have had basically you would have had. This is more toned down than this. And this is just totally distracting. So this area here on the left side above the little girl on the left shows way to distract and this is totally blown out. So the answer to this is a good job on the lighting on the subject's. Maybe choose a background that's not going to compete with you, there's. No point in having a family picture when you're featuring the grass in the back, you know? So this is a little bit of a different story in this one, it seems like the light the light is so purposely done that it's not like it's, not like there's. Like a clear cold spot in the sky. It the whole thing is a hot spot in the sky. So to me, this is not as bad. It has kind of like a what is the word? Yes, kind of like, uh, hey see mood to it. You know, if you're shooting fashion, this works great. If you're shooting high school seniors, I say it's great. My only suggestion to this is if you're going to do this kind of thing and on the subject is going to be flatly lit. It shows that you're not putting much attention to the light that's what that tells me it finds you put someone in there you saw the hate the crazy background is well blown out and you just took a picture of them the only light illuminating her seems to be the reflection off the sidewalk into their face so to me if I was looking at photographers um you know I don't shoot friends weddings I don't shoot I don't shoot friends for family's weddings reporters or anything so if somebody says shoot my wedding I fear my friend I'm not shooting your wedding I'm not shooting your portrait I'm not gonna do anything for you I'm just not gonna get involved right? So people always ask me how do you want? Can you choose a photographer for me and I look at people's web sites all the time to choose a photographer for them and if I see this I will say this this on your website you're not this is you're supposed to be proud of the photos on your website and this just shows a lack off extra thought like I'm going to make this I want a craft her face a little bit you're ready going crazy with a with a crazy highlight blown out sky that's fine that's the movie you wanted to go for and then she's proposing next to a trashcan which is kind of questionable but let's just say it's okay? Because he's resting her hand but the face the lighting on the face doesn't say anything to me so to me this would have been a good situation for a black flag or a reflector or tone down the change the exposure um if you have a situation like this you you could tone down this and bring flash in tow this side of the face not this out of the face why not decide because if you do this it looks like there's a weird light source coming from nowhere but if you do it this way it looks like it's coming from here but now when you turn on the flash you separate the exposures. The ambience is one exposure on the flash on her it's a different exposure that would have been to me like okay, this this person is doing things okay? Okay um so this is an interesting photo a lot of people do the veil flying in the sky shots so I tell you one thing, if you're gonna do the veil flying in the sky separate the veil from this guy okay, how do you do that? Any suggestions cary carrie's like no uh well darken the sky good on what would you do to the flash? What would you do, toto the veil I would like to think about it. This is what this is what? This is why this critics are so important not critics. This is why this is so important that what is the flash besides flash illuminating things? What is another of the biggest features that are flash could bring to you? Freeze! So if the veil is flying in the sky, freeze it! You know I have a light on your flash without somewhat large lights or so it's not like this little pinpoints of light on ly a little piece of it is frozen and the rest is like somewhere disappear. Okay. If the veil is flying like this put a light source. Put it diffuser over it. Shoot it on dh flash that flash the veil make sense on then don't make it so don't make it so flashy that it looks like you totally used the flash. If you choose toe, keep the flash sorrow as you should. You have to remember that one thing is going to happen. You're not going to freeze the veil all the way then because the stronger the flash the stronger it's freezing power. So if you put your flash of full power, then the flat the veil will freeze completely. Okay, but if you put your flash I like on eighth power the flash would have would be more frozen but he will have a little bit off a little bit of movement to it so remember them or power your flash has they're more freezing power it will have okay sonny, I do posting workshops right that's what I do so whenever I see posing I just my body's like talk about oppose but I can't write it's a lighting classes all right it's like restraining myself was like, you know, so the light here is coming from the inside and some of the light is spilling into her shadow side of her cheek you see that? So you have this circular geometric shapes off light hitting her face on they're not organized geometric shapes is not like you have a circle circle circle circle circle, circle, circle circle circle and they're like, oh, the pattern no it's like dark and then I random circle and then I ran the blind it's kind of distracting remember in this part of the fence light is still bouncing inside I'm bouncing out so if you put someone there this is going to cost a shadow on your subject just like if you were to put a flash behind the fence and flash it they got a real shadow it's still it's still present probably because the ambient light this cause in the shadow um one wayto fix that is to make her further away from the wall okay, if you're farther away from the wall that life is so weak it may not reach enough to make a shot on her face uh nothing to see what else another thing well in my opinion when I see this photo I cannot help but notice her left collarbone is more important than any part of the picture. So this bone here it's a photo off this bone if you're shooting this you ask yourself is this a fashion shoot or just a portrait? If it's a fashion shoot concentrate on the close and light them up it was a matter of the face is dark it's not about that if you're doing a portrait then be careful putting all the hot spots on the on the neck area or in the collarbone area you've got to control that how would you control that you can put a diffuser over her I mean you can put a flash near her face to control that remember flash and natural light look exactly the same they don't look different okay okay let me see here this is actually intelligently done here's why? If you notice carefully the shadows on the floor are pointed towards the photographer so if you notice you can see the shadow here this the bride has her shadow right there do you see that if that shadows there on the photo was taken from here, it means that the light from the sun is exactly directly behind them now the life understand is also being defused by the trees that's why it's so soft and the veil didn't blow out if the sun would have been they're directly hearing the veil with no no trees to defuse it then that veil would probably blown out okay, so this is actually a good photo to explain sometimes when I'm shooting my own jobs I'm like okay, I'm gonna I don't have time to do all these setups so I'm just going to do a quick shot I'm going to stand down nicky, could you come here for a second here if this is the sun if this is the sun and he casts a shadow it casts a shadow on hurt you see there on the floor there you go ahead and turn around okay if this is the sun I look at the shadow her shadows coming this way ok is coming this way. If I do that, I know that I'm directly standing behind that the sun is directly behind her right now you have choice is what you can do turn your body that way a little bit now you have some sun hitting her left shoulder but he's out of camera of you so you can't so because of the inverse square law of light if she turns her body towards the sun and the sun is coming directly behind her if she turns this way the sun illuminates our here on then what's gonna happen with with a sun is goingto isn't it gradually goto what darkness so then that actually sends them out so makes sense one part of their bodies bright and then he starts to slowly go into darkness don't forget as long as you can see as long as there's light in the world and you can see with your eyes the inverse square law of life is affecting everything you're seeing every single thing you are saying my arm my my face my body right now everything is being affected by the rules of light so if the sun is here this is going to be brighter this is going to go darker this is going to go darker on your face is going to be cleanly laid because there's nothing hitting her directly the only thing illuminating her face is the life bouncing from the floor that light mountain from the floor floor to me it's never strong enough to feature her face so that's when you can say um I simple a simple case of light this way go ahead and look this way that's good enough otherwise if I bounce the light off the floor it's just not strong enough to do anything now remember I'm talking about taking your photography too a little bit higher level most people stood with the sun behind them then they face then you follow the shadow and then I stand here so I'm facing the sun her back is facing the sun and then you take the picture that's going to look what I call a perfectly fine no problem but that's also what everybody does and that's what I'm trying to get it if you take two extra seconds to go like this that's it that's going to give her a little pop off light on people like me will say ok that has some punch to it or what I call hot sauce okay thank you so this is nice it's nice that the trees are there to defuse the light so it doesn't illuminate the veil so harsh okay good okay this one um this is good it's got a nice feel to it you know it's nice uh posting wise the right hand ok I can't talk about posing okay um this is nice it's the same situation the sun is directly behind them they're here she she's pointing this way the fighter she's pointing this is very anal retentive off me but this is a compliment because her face is turned towards towards him and he's wearing a wider shirt like I sure that's white or grey it's actually reflecting light back at her if he was wearing a black shirt and you turn him you turn her towards the black shirt you're actually putting like a black flag here creating a shadow he sat on her face both work but just be aware of it if you have a white shirt do you turn? This is going to be breaded in this side ok in this example sheet she turned toe towards that side and it's good. Um I also think this is well done because the lighting on their face seems to be brighter than pretty much every any other part ofthe scene on maybe they for maybe they burnt the highlights looks a little bit like you could have been done maybe not um but he looks a looks decent it's fine I would change nothing here okay good job here the purple the purple background is bright it's more important and her dress it's kind of like blowing her out but there's just no attention to lighting on her as a portrait okay so hear the background sze distracting me and also there's no attention to light owners like stand here hold on to the plant and me take a picture and that's where that's where it stopped um the post okay like mentally is like so hard, you know because her under the weight of her body is facing the camera okay so and her arms are touching her waist so her arms are actually making her room's bigger on the whole the whole weight of her body is facing the camera so that just made her body much larger not to mention there's no gaps between her arm on her body so now her body's this wide instead of this white makes sense nicky can I borrow you for a second again? So here's making she's got two arms and she has a torso okay her torso is this white you see it see where my arms are that's the width of her torso but as soon as she does this now this is the way to her torso so when you look at the photo you react in an instant and that infant is nikki is this wide but as soon as she put a gap somewhere you realize that her waistline ends here and he let events here so that gives you a little defense you down from an instantaneous reaction when people look at a photo you have like less than a second for your body to react that's one of the things that's wrong with another thing is the back of her hand is closest toh thank you the back of her left hand is the closest thing to the brightest light source you see that so she's actually the light's coming this way on her hand it's actually pointed out towards the light source so the left hand is extremely bright considering the rest no bad I don't see a lot of crafting in the face the human race can be crafted in so many ways you can put a light here create raccoon eyes and still have catch like putting a little light source underneath you could put what we did yesterday with calvin when we had two big lights but there were only the only the edge of the soft box was illuminating him this is okay it's a little funny with a color and part of the image is blue and his face is very red so there's a little bit of a weird color shift going on um but in terms of the lighting on his face I don't I don't personally clr crafting I think ah flash would have been a flash through the future would have been easy to do here would have really crafted him better not to mention the background is way too monochromatic with him so that the let me not blue mean us gloomy no luminosity levels in the background are pretty much identical to him so in decades as a photographer you would say okay I got a separate this like I gotta make the background darker on make him brighter because the backgrounds also grey and he shirt is great so it almost looks like his head if you close your eyes for a second, you don't have to do it, but if you close your eyes for a second and you open them you see a floating head kind of happening to see what I mean. Okay, this is, uh, interesting one so obviously this is a really interesting one because we're talking about the reference point all day, right? This is a reference point issue the sun it's on the left side where the light position tau to illuminate them behind them is positioned on the right side. You see that these little anal retentive things is what's going to come? Is what's going to change things? So for example, look where the shadow is on him it's just going this way but the sun is this way so it's like okay, where is the shadow? You get up remember the reference point is here so the flash should have been positioned here pointed in the same direction as the sun. Okay, um instead, it's here doesn't make any sense. So if you're watching this and you tryingto take you for talking to a higher level, you gotta remember the reference point is more important than it sounds when I'm talking about the reference point don't just listen to it and forget it, write it down and keep it in your mind every time you do a photo shoot remember the first day I said the first defect the top ten things I looked for when I walk into a location do you remember the first one by any chance mark you'll be the first one by any chance sorry to put you on the brightest yes not here and that's not okay take a look at the scene here would you say this building is being hit by direct sunlight so dramatically your brain to say ignore that move onto the next part's right? But then look at the bright spot of the building here and it starts to kind of diminish but it's still brighter here that then it is kind of in this side do you see that? Ideally, you would put your subject here but unless you have a floating subject or some sort of helicopter that's not gonna work. So do you see the sun coming under on this side of the building right there? That to me is enough to know that if I put her here that if I put her here that's on could be I could put a reflector there on that reflector would that someone would hit that reflector and it would bounce the light back at her that's option one option two you could put her on the brightest side off this see that bright side of that brick wall right there I would put her there and I would make sure there's no life bill coming from the sun spilling into the wall because any could cast a red cast on her face. So to fix that, I would put her two feet away from the red wall. I read wall getting hit by light it's going to give you a very strong red cast on your face. I remember the first day we did the photo off the model with the red with the red paper. Well, I red brick wall still read, so if you put a red people a red brick well here and you put your subject here and then you put light here, you're going to get red on under face, so move them away on then the the cast one reached their face, the composition and this photo's actually well done, because the distracting leg is on the right, but the capo is positioned on the left whenever you have a distracting element on one side and you put that subject on the other side, your balance too. But if you have a distracting element on this side and you put your subjects on the same side as a distracting element, you're killing your picture, you're basically making a very heavy on the distraction side, so this is actually this works well, um, this is a morph opposing thing if you're going to do with something like this make sure you turned a couple a little bit so you can see more of the bright face seeing the groom's double chin and seeing the groups all side of his face and not seeing the pride it's an issue no to mention the bread has long hair so if she has a double chin you can cover it like covered here so you could actually put some you could turn her towards that towards the camera and still cover her chin on anything is if she has her right hand free kato's flowers and throw them away like literally don't use flowers on bride and groom shots like just step on them throw them kick them okay because that frees her hand to cover his double chin so they're together can you stand up for a second rachel can you come here for a second please? Funny no you don't okay no double chance here but if she if she's together and she covers him and they're doing something going in close your eyes turn your face towards the camera very united you turn your face not towards her like that and she does this it looks realistic right watch grab your hand put it behind his head and then work your way to his neck ready go take the picture right there you see that always doing movement so it looks natural if you do that, you can get rid of his double chin, and if she has no fortune, which it does not, you can use their hair to cover it. Thank you. This is one of those things that I wanted to ride in my new book that I'm writing picture perfect lighting, where people do shots with the sun this harsh behind them. So if the sun is here, the light hits the floor and he bounces back at the same angle, right? But in this photo, the sun is like here when the sun is here, you're actually illuminate in the hair with straight, direct sun, and the sun is at a lower point, making her hair totally blow out when her hair blows out that much it doesn't look appealing to me, I feel like it's not refined enough, so you gotta change the exposure change that grabbed that crazy high light over here. I want to look at her beautiful face, but my eyes keep going to the crazy white line going across her body it's like, wow, that is very strong right there. So grab this exposed more more for this and I know saying get a perfect exposure on the highlight I'm saying maybe go one and a half stops darker than this is exposed and then put a reflector on her because the sun is already coming, the song that's already coming this way so if you have a reflector turn towards her, you could easily bounce light back. So you fixed the issue in this case, I don't think there's a reflector there. Maybe there is. I don't know. I don't think there is. Actually, I don't think there's a reflector there. So so if you have a reflector, costs nothing, make the exposure darker so that high night dawson is not so prominent on bounce a little light back on her, you have the light to work with, you know what? If you don't have the light, what if you don't? What do you do? You make it. Thank you, rachel. If you don't have the light if you don't have the lights, grab this little guy point this at this and now you have the light. Okay, so this is very simple and it's super easy and that's it. You illuminate them perfectly. If you don't have enough to bounce, just grab your roommate. This is like your son, right? If you're on the floor and you're sorry doesn't have enough son boom boom! Like sorry if you don't want to use the full blast remember the first day grabbed this diffuser? If I'm photographing tyler, grab this diffuser turn it around this way so it's only the edge of it and then on lee hit a little bit off the edge of the diffuser you don't have to use the middle you just used the edge is good enough how long does this take you think if that it takes turning it on and then going well there you go don't you see what I'm saying? It's a very simple, very simple how am I going to give you guys four straps for eight people? Nine you'll take a book instead I don't know can I don't know how we're going to do that one let me ask uh joshua if you were me standing here and you saw this photo let's see we're picking up some stuff what you come up come up come up what do you think? I think the leading is he's too even with the background I think that they're kind of the same he kind of blends into me because exposures aboutthe same so there's no separation between subject and background so two themes going on sometimes there's way too much separation like the previous photo sometimes there's no separation enough where this one ex monochromatic with the background um so it's almost like you have too much too much operation not enough separation where is the middle ground, right cool, what else there's not really much shaping to him at all either. He's very far it was that's it it just looks like it looks like when you go toe called flat what is that little doll called? You take it to places and you take a picture of it flat stands like the last family is like I mean tucson, arizona you know, because the cactus norman so school thank you. This is pretty much another flat. Stanley one hey, shirt has separation from the background but there's no, no light and also he sure is white as the that that it's not only white is the broadest part of the picture so that's when you have to figure out tone down the exposure of the white and put more light on his face, how do you do that? Very simple that's it you're done when I was very quick, you know we laugh, but actually I do that all the time and it takes me two seconds. So this person chose the brightest spot in the in the scene but it's the light, direct or indirect and if it is direct, what charges do you have to make the post look good diffuser? Well, hope post twice like the post you see how there's crazy shadows happening all over their face that's because the post doesn't match the light so if the if the light is coming this way, you have no choice but to bring the face towards the light there's just no options okay? What is the reference point here? The wheel but doesn't make sense does it? It could be a parking lot light maybe I don't know it's hard for me to put a sacramento let me tell you what I think I think this picture looks great it's fine, but if you wanna if let's say you put in this imprint competition and I'm judging the print competition or whatever I'm doing, I will look at it and I'll say it looks like somebody put a flash over the umbrella from from the other side and fired it it doesn't look believable, it just looks like you're trying some no no cool technique he was like a look at this is really cool if you have no reference point I just it doesn't have that sophistication to it. Okay it's nothing wrong with this and it's just it's fine it's flat it's fine it's beautiful that one's very hasty. Too much operation I can't enjoy the photo is just too much white on the on the other side okay it's just too too too much I don't mind when people do the hasty background that's blown out, but when is that much just it takes over the picture another thing is when you have the sun having your lands and you get this this halo's off lights coming around their arms move your lens a little bit left and right until those halos are not crossing their face of their arms if he crosses the legs then crop their legs crossed your legs out of the composition it's just flat again is just another flat image, so we've we've spoken plenty the only challenge with these pictures that if you try to fix the lighting here on her, you're gonna cast shadows on him so the only way to fix this to me you would have to put the light pretty much right here if you put the light here is going to cast a shadow on this side so makes sense so well again, I think there's actually a reference point in this picture, which is actually I agree with it the reference point this this copper lighting kind of comes from this light so I can see why that would be this makes sense to me. What doesn't make sense is I just can't enjoy the photo because of this pink thing going on here on all these other super bright highlights everywhere look, I feel like the pattern is we need to be more careful with our choice of location that's kind of what I'm kind of what I'm seeing you know the top ten list of given to everyone that buys this course that top ten list you just have to look at the top ten list and go through that thing. I mean that top two laces a simple list that takes years to master, you know, it's it's like less well, not years, but a lot of work. Okay, because locations like this it's just hard to know toto enjoy it. However, she could be coming from the airport, he could have seen it, and he could have been happy to see her. And the picture was taken, but it's so flat. I don't know. This is nice. I think, uh, there's a reflection off the water coming behind them that gives you the opportunity to put a light behind them behind their head on separate them from the water and that's. The reference point is that the reflection here, so basically this reflection in the water could have been illuminating and putting light behind their head so you could have put a flash behind them a week in the flash power tow a very little touch of light on you would have created a nice separation. She would have had a nice little light. I would have definitely put a light on her hair right there, and it would have made this photo a lot more a lot more beautiful remember the photo I showed yesterday off the swiss model that was a surgeon from my short she was in front of that green bush and it didn't look like anything with with natural light but then I put a flash in front of her and put a flashing her hair that made a photo like jump out at you that's what this would've benefited from that was well, separation is just literally monochromatic. I think the hospital behind him is a little too bright on the fingers are really brighter than his face. So it's a bit of an issue uh before I move on I wanted to just show you something or if I have enough time for a move on I want you guys to take a look at this. I got this book from graphic story they send it to me here to show but I wanted to show you the reception photos that I took at this wedding because this is this was probably the most one of the most difficult weddings that I had to shoot and if you look at the chemical but let me go so I know I'm switching gears but I have to get this through okay, take a look at the dancing pictures, take a look at the frozen at the guy giving the speech do you see that piece of hair illuminating him there that's that's what jumps out when people are looking at your albums it looks like it's there's action going on look at this one here you see that hair light behind him on a nice light illuminating him there if you click here that's that's what? She reacted and I quickly turned around and I took a quick picture of her with a dtl flash okay, this is flat light on this is not flat light you see that this has hair light here this has everything going on. So when you when you take the extra effort you see that hair light that's my flash right there you see that thing when you show the extra look at the nice hair like going through her face this is what I'm trying to say is what I'm talking about is a little bit of effort when you print it it looks really, really beautiful something sense when he's printed so it's almost like when you see it look at that when you see it you can say this looks gorgeous and people are like this looks nice so people are laughing and reacting to the speeches so I quickly turned around I hit her and then I went back to him and he was giving a speech at the light is different on him than it is on them on them is flat on them it has that dynamic nous to them okay um I just wanted to throw that in there because because I I feel like when you see it printed it it's a lot more beautiful. Okay, well, you guys can take a look at this if you want later um show you okay? Cool shot. I'm gonna ask you santa quick question don't want it to get it right or wrong is there a reference point in this picture where that light in the back could possibly come from from the lamps that's it so it's well done okay and also it's not over exposed so much that it's like this crazy amount of life just powering them right? So good job for this that those light on the left are very clearly illuminating clearly obviously it's not true but clearly illuminating the back of their heads. Well that's nice this is interesting because they're sitting down more light is reflected on their face because the life here in the floor and then he bounces back into their face forever that fought off that thank you actress model person I shot of the first day and I saw the bench and I said there's a bench you can lay on the seat on the bench lay on the bench because you're putting her closer to the floor more of the light his or face I feel like that's what's happening here if she would have been standing up that quality of life would have been about ten to twenty percent less. Okay, somebody was asking about how yesterday, when we watched you on a location and we saw you spend that, like, ten, fifteen minutes assessing everything, or maybe it wasn't even that long, but but so you really worry we saw your brain working, which was awesome when you're working with when you're working with their clients, whether it's a wedding, whether it's, another type of shoot, how how quickly are you doing that sort of thing are people? Is it okay to do that sort of thing and tell your clients what you're doing? What what are your thoughts on that? I think that when I started my career and I used to try to be a hero and be like, I don't ever have to think I can go from one place to the next to the next to the next, the next, and I'm like a powerhouse. I was just making mistake after mistake when I now they us much experiences they bring to the table, I take my time even more now, like when I'm taking candid for journalistic pictures, I just take them, I pay attention, I know when they're coming, I no because you know howto post people and you know howto like people it doesn't mean it does not mean you don't have to take for a journalistic pictures at all that's ridiculous I just wanted to master all of them I wanted to react good too for a journalistic moments but when it's time to take a portrait I think my time to look at the location I walk in and I say there's some crazy bright spot I'm not going to put them there I'm going to put them here instead there's a cool lamp here that could be a reference point that would make total sense that's how you start getting those photos to go to a different level you know um you start trying things so it's okay do you guys ever take your time? Do you guys ever say I mean yesterday a creative life? I said hold on a second I just gotta think for a minute I encourage you guys who don't take twenty minutes you know, but take take thirty seconds to analyze where you're at, let your brain catch up, let your brain think and then get the photo taken and if you ever wanna post people well, I think I'll give you a big tip it's not posting doesn't mean you go like this or like this or it's all posey posting it's a flow it flows. It looks like you never post them so you can get a post to look good. Then you break that and then you you do it again in movement and you get a natural flow that's, how you get that beautiful posting the toast and look post at all. Ok, ok. Just for fun. I wanted to end with this because this is this is just a cool little story. I saw her on america's next top model. She was the second finalist for whatever. See, sonny wes on, um I thought she had a really cool, strong face and I said, man, I want to photograph you right on. So I just called whatever, whoever he needed to, and they're this essay and she came to my studio and we did the photo shoot. I didn't. She modeled for me. For what? My workshops in l a on dh. Then I told her your facial features are so cool. Then I went to the tor, the signer that had really cool dresses like concept dresses and I thought, okay, kara is like, six feet twenty million on she's like this tall, powerful person. Right? And then you have this crazy. Dresses so I went to the store where they had two dresses like the designers place on he's, the guy that designs all the clothes for america's next top model, the show and I picked out this dress or rob is his name. He picked out the dress that had the had all these little stringy things going on and I said, mandy strings are so cool he was so proud of the strings coming down because he put one by one by hand and so I said, give me that dress I'll photograph it and then I said, but instead of the strings going down I went to strings flying up and he goes well, that's impossible is called gravity and I said it's not impossible because flash freezes things so I just started my head if you throw the strings up, the flash will freeze them right? So then I said, okay, um I went to my computer program that I that I like to use for whenever I'm creating a concept shoot and I thought her arms would be would be throwing up in the wood the throne will be thrown up into the air with such speed that the strings of the dress would fly out and I would freeze them with my flash. The problem is, if you do it this way, this costs a crazy shadow and so I had to put another life to illuminate the shadow. So make sense. So one will cause a shadow. The other lights will kill the shadow. I wanted a shadow less, but totally frozen, which is very interesting, because if you want to freeze it, you need a lot of power on your lights on the more power on your lights that stronger the shadows will be so I was like, all right, this is gonna be a good one, you know? But the other light was even more powerful than the first light. So you got rid of the shadow all together, and then, um, I was shooting her here, and I remember I tried to get her to two to do his movement on her face was looking funny, everything I did it. So then she wouldn't like you are something like that. So it's just like, okay, that's not gonna work sometimes in my posing or fashion photography. I know it is that if people make a funny nose where their face expression looks funny, it's, because people have inhibitions, so they were trying to look good, and you're too worried about looking good, so you don't want to look stupid, so what I do is I actually it's what I call like pushing the reset button I make them look stupid on purpose so stupid that there just like I couldn't go more stupid I've gone a stupid as I can so now you could basically feel like you can do anything at that point and as soon as we did that her face expression started becoming what I wanted it it wasn't like this monster kind of like going bra around here like this it was like this very serene strong photo but she had a tough task I said I need you to twist your whole body fly the strings over on keep your face perfectly still in the camera and she was like, wow okay on the string on the arm had to frame your face and the other arm cannot have the rays broken so when you do this you frame your face the other arm has to kind of not end up like this that would ruin the photo or you cannot end up like this so it has to be like a ballerina just flow that was really a tough one it took a lot of that was a fun fun job um this is the this is the final photo after all that planning that came out of the photo shoot the reason why this is a cool stories because this course is called picture perfect lighting on this picture was taken with lights out at their maximum like lighting is one made this picture possible. Lighting is what froze. This is, we're froze. Strength lighting is what made the face looks like that. Lighting is, will make the shadow disappear. Lighting was used in every way to create this picture.

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