Friday, 13 March 2009

Flashy pad

Had a tricky wee job in Glasgow this week. As some of the feedback we've received at work asked us to feature some smaller homes, our editor opted for a cool flat in the centre of Glasgow. It was tricky because of the smaller rooms with large windows. It was a really bright day outside (unusual for Glasgow I know!) so when exposing for the interior I was getting so much over-exposure in the windows that I was getting flare which not only robbed the image of contrast but also of detail in the lovely wooden flooring.

I've been using flash for interiors more and more recently to keep at least some detail in the windows. It's tricky though (well it is for me) because you really can't just flash the room straight on as you'll get horrible shadows from ornaments or fireplaces, or really anything in the room. Obviously bouncing is the answer but this can introduce colour casts depending on the colours of the walls. I tend to bounce into ceiling joints or corners and in this instance I had 2 white walls and a white ceiling I could use so after messing around with the setup I managed to get the shadows just where I wanted them.

One great place to learn about interiors is this
flickr group. It's mainly large US houses but the members give great feedback and quite a few still use multiple flashes to get an even exposure rather than succumb to the use of HDR. I never seem to get an image I like using HDR for interiors, and whenever I end up looking at a pic and thinking 'wow' it always turned out to have been done using flashes. See, David Hobby hasn't only helped my portraits but also my interiors!!

For example, for this first shot I exposed for the outside as I wanted the blue sky and the tower to be visible and I used a shoot through brolly for the subject (a really sound guy actually).  I’d have preferred to use a gridded flash on this portrait and perhaps one raking across the blinds, but we didn’t have the time as I knew I’d have to wrestle with the flashes for the interiors.

For the livingroom I used two bare flashes bounced behind me into ceiling joints. I wanted a smaller aperture to get a nice sharp image so the flashes were working hard at around half or full power, I can't remember exactly now.  I asked if we could have the telly on since a blank panel of grey is never very purdy and luckily we found Top Gear (not hard as it’s always on Dave).  As our subject is into his cars and has a really cool one himself it was perfect.  I snapped a few then saw this Lambo and made sure I got one with it in.  It think it works pretty well and having met the subject I think it’s pretty appropriate :)_DSC6716

Have a location food shoot on Thursday next week and then a strobist group shoot at the weekend so that should be good!

1 comment:

  1. great stuff thanks for sharing how you achieved it.