LANDSCAPE and LIGHT III | Recognizing great photographic light

hello hello everybody feels pretty good
to be back in Canada now I I just got back from the UK I and I had an awesome
time it was way too sure though I was only there for well just over a week and
three days in Lake district was definitely not enough but it was nice to
get a little bit of a taste and it was really great to to meet the folks that
came out to the show I am planning to come back hopefully this time next year
except for longer so two to three weeks ideally so I can concentrate a little
bit more on the photography so hopefully I’ll get to see you guys again next year
all right now then video 3 of my lighting series in this video I’m going
to be talking about reflected light now reflected light is somewhat
self-explanatory its reflected light but what I’m going to be concentrating in
this video is I I just want to kind of show you examples of where you might
find that type of lighting so that’s what I’m going to be doing in this video
before I start I will say that you know this whole series of videos about
lighting is to kind of get you thinking about you know what types of light there
are out there because to be honest with you
I don’t know if you’ve noticed but you know companies that make movies or
photographers that a shooting product usually shoot stuff like that in
a studio and and the reason being is that in a studio environment it’s so
much easier to control the lighting now of course over the years things have
changed up a little bit because now we have computers so I mean the the things
that you can do in computers now are just limitless and you can change
lighting and and I mean the list just goes on and on but for
outdoor photographers like us it’s it is a real challenge because your your
pretty much left up to the elements and it’s it ends up being a waiting game
those that have the most patience and just keep going back to the same area
over and over again what eventually will be rewarded but you know a lot of us
don’t have that time to to hang out and and wait for great light and my last
trip to to the Lake District was a prime example I mean the weather was just
gorgeous but the light for photography was not terribly exciting and because
I’m a visitor and I’m only there for a limited amount of time you know you you
kind of have to make some some pretty hard choices you could either not take
any photographs whatsoever or just try to make the best out of a bad situation
so light is definitely the most important aspect some people might
disagree with me but I I would definitely put light always at the top
of the list anyway without further delay why don’t we get right into reflected
light all right okay now I can’t talk about
reflected-light without bringing up the the canyons in the desert southwest of
the United States now for any of you that watch this channel you’ve probably
heard of Ben Horne’s channel and probably watch his videos if you haven’t
you should I’ll leave a link in the description below but Ben is always
harping on about reflected-light and that’s probably the main reason why I go
down to the desert Southwest places like Zion National Park the Escalante
wilderness both of those areas are my favorite areas to go and photograph
intimate shots of these canyons the neat thing about the canyons in the desert
Southwest is that the best time to photograph in them is actually midday on
a bright Bluebird sunny sky day you get the sun shining into the canyon and then
you’ll get all of this reflected light bouncing around creating these wonderful
contrasts in color now in this image here this was taken in spooky Gulch in
the Escalante wilderness and you’ll notice that there’s some wonderful deep
orange light in here but you’ll also notice that there’s a kind of a purpley
blue color in there and what’s happening here is we’re getting reflected light
directly hitting the canyon walls but we’re also getting reflections or
ambient light from the blue sky above reflecting on the cliff as well so
that’s where the blue is coming from and of course when you combine those two
colors together you get this wonderful contrast in color which I keep going on
about in pretty much all of my videos now here in BC we do have canyons but
there of course not red sandstone they’re mostly either limestone or
granite and often they’re surrounded by lots of green trees and covered in moss
so any reflected light that we do get is usually in the form of green rather than
orange and you can kind of see this in this image here this is a photograph of
a canyon on Vancouver Island’s not far from Carmanah Provincial Park this is
called Looper Canyon and it’s a fantastic location in this photograph
here I’ve taken a number of different exposures because the contrast was just
too high to get it all in one shot so I exposed one shot for the reflections on
the right side of the photograph and then another shot for the the left side
of the photograph where with a ambient light is hitting the moss and the
foliage and then I combined the two in Photoshop but the reflections in here
we’re just wonderful the light was bouncing around this Canyon and
reflecting light on the left side here and you can see all the wonderful
textures in the limestone now snow has some really wonderful
reflective qualities to it obviously being white in nature it’s pretty much
gonna reflect any light that you throw at it so early early in the morning or
late in the evening when the sun’s going down
the quality of light on snow is just superb in this image here this was early
in the morning and you obviously you can see that you’re getting this beautiful
orange light just skimming the snow but also it’s contrasting with the snow
that’s in the shade catching ambient light from the sky again creating a bit
of a contrast in color now here’s the same scene it actually clouded over
after the Sun came up and of course the light is much more subdued but it’s
still reflecting enough light in the shadows that you don’t get any deep deep
shadows in in snow and that’s the thing that I really like about it even on
bright sunny day you can get away with photographing snow and shadows because
the light is reflecting around so much that you’re just not going to get those
deep black shadows that add contrast and confusion so that’s the main reason why
I really love photographing snow and of course any type of color that you get in
the clouds is going to reflect directly on the snow and create these beautiful
colors that you might not get anywhere else
or in any other kind of landscape okay now something to keep in mind when
you are looking for reflective light you have to be careful when you start
using polarisers this image here some of you may recognize I took quite recently
and what really attracted me to this root and this cliff face was the
reflected light now if I put on a polarizer that would have eliminated all
that reflected light and then the image wouldn’t have been quite as successful
as it is so if you are going to use a polarizer be careful with it try it out
first see if it works if it looks improves the image if it doesn’t then
just don’t use it or if you’re not sure try one image with it and try another
without now in some situations you can control
reflected light somewhat I use it quite often while I’m doing close-ups of
flowers I used it a lot when I was doing garden photography or close-ups so
what I would do I’d have a subject such as this in bright sunshine and of course
the the contrast and the difference between the the bright areas and the
dark areas really adds quite a bit of confusion and of course in this image
here we have all these little distractions in the background in the
form of grasses so what I’ve done in the next image here is I’ve actually
diffused the light by just casting my own shadow over the whole scene and you
can see all of a sudden that the light is quite a bit softer and a little bit
more manageable but it’s still quite flat and it’s still quite confusing with
all those little grasses in the background so this last image here what
I actually did was I took the the box that my Lee filters come in it’s a tin
box and what I’ve done here is I’ve carefully reflected the light that I
want directly onto the white flowers careful not to reflect light on the
background so I’ve created this contrast and you’ll notice all of a sudden that
the background is quite a bit darker so we’ve eliminated some of that clutter
but the foreground or the flowers are quite a bit brighter so they really
stand out from the background and this is a really effective way of using
reflective light and lastly here is another familiar
image that I took a couple of years ago in Yoho National Park at Lake O Hara now
this is Seven Veils waterfall it’s at the back of the lake there and what was
really unique about this situation was this was a cloudless sunny day so not
terribly exciting for photography but what I did is I walked around the back
of the lake so that it was in the shade and this waterfall was in the shade but
it was actually catching reflected light from the opposite side of the valley
so you can see that in the rocks here there’s quite a bit of reflected light
and that really adds a little bit of interest and contrast to the whole image
now there is a slight blue cast of the image which could easily warmed up in in
Photoshop or with a warming filter but I decided to keep it quite cool now with
that reflected light it really does add interest to the image now I if I put a
polarizer on it probably would have eliminated that that Sheen off the rocks
there and wouldn’t have been quite as interesting or dynamic so again keep it
in mind when you’re using polarizers not to overdo it with them right that’s it for this week’s video on
light as always if you have any questions be sure to leave them in the
comments below and I’ll try to get to give you an answer and as usual if you
enjoyed this video please be sure to give me a thumbs up and don’t forget to
subscribe if you enjoy the content alright everybody
until next time keep on shooting alright Cheers


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