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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre Weddings & Other Family Events Talk 
Thread started 03 Nov 2015 (Tuesday) 21:43
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Engagement shoot comign up, use RL and 48" or natural

 
digitalduck
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Nov 03, 2015 21:43 |  #1

Hi guys,

I have an engagement shoot coming up outdoors and, even though well be shooting as close to golden hour as we can, I'm trying to decide what I will bring with me. I have been using a 60D for a few years and have loved my off camera flash results. While I know a lot about balancing my ambient with or wihtout a meter and am getting better and better using my HSS on my Rovelight, I am trying to decide if I bring it anyway? I just purchased a 6D which will be my first FF camera ever. I also bought a 24-105l to compliment my 70-200 2.8 Tamron.

I can see how with my new investment that i can get great results with just natural. I am big on catchlights so I will either need to make sure my ambient light is correct to give me the proper reflections. Or, do I bring my 48" octo /RL even if I use it in non HSS, just for fill...

I also have my 60" shoot through and a westcott appolo style softbox.... I am really looking forward to the shoot and using my new gear... any advice would be greatly appreciated, TY!




  
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MalVeauX
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Nov 03, 2015 22:07 |  #2

Heya,

I guess it matters if you're working solo, or if you have help.

Personally with only 1 hour or so to shoot, I'd want help to move the gear around. Going solo, you'll get worn out fast moving that light, stand and modifier and making sure it's 100% stable before you step away and watch the wind knock it down. That 1 hour will melt away fast.

The 6D will not have any results any differently from your 60D in natural light, unless you're looking to lift shadows a little more (such as underexposing the subjects and exposing for the sky and then lifting shadows in post), or unless you're wanting to shoot at higher ISO values and get cleaner out of camera files. Otherwise, the same principles apply and you'll have the exact same exposures. The real difference will be again, the slight bump in dynamic range (only matters if you're lifting shadows or taming highlights in this situation, high contrast golden hour light), and/or cleanliness of high ISO.

I would take lighting. Large modifiers make softer light. But again it matters if you have help or not.

Whatever you take, it's for fill. Golden hour is all about the tone. If you use something that is the wrong color (temperature) and try to blend it, they will look colorer than the ambient light and it will be weird. This is where gels matter.

Personally I would use speedlites for this, gelled with 1/2 CTO gels. The goal being simple fill. But I work solo, so if I had 1 hour to do an engagement shoot, that's where I'd focus, fast and light. I'd take a few lights too. If one speedlite isn't enough juice for a certain shot, two often can be, and three can sometimes seal the deal. The stands and mounts are all lighter too. And a single, small umbrella or softbox, or even just naked bare lights themselves, are much more portable than a big 48" octa, or 60" modifier.

And I say that as someone who loves to use the Rovelight, 48" octa and 60" umbrella too. I just know that with 1 hour time constraint, I'd want speed.

Golden hour with some fill light = spectacular.

Very best,


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digitalduck
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Nov 03, 2015 23:24 |  #3

MalVeauX wrote in post #17771566 (external link)
Heya,

I guess it matters if you're working solo, or if you have help.

Personally with only 1 hour or so to shoot, I'd want help to move the gear around. Going solo, you'll get worn out fast moving that light, stand and modifier and making sure it's 100% stable before you step away and watch the wind knock it down. That 1 hour will melt away fast.

The 6D will not have any results any differently from your 60D in natural light, unless you're looking to lift shadows a little more (such as underexposing the subjects and exposing for the sky and then lifting shadows in post), or unless you're wanting to shoot at higher ISO values and get cleaner out of camera files. Otherwise, the same principles apply and you'll have the exact same exposures. The real difference will be again, the slight bump in dynamic range (only matters if you're lifting shadows or taming highlights in this situation, high contrast golden hour light), and/or cleanliness of high ISO.

I would take lighting. Large modifiers make softer light. But again it matters if you have help or not.

Whatever you take, it's for fill. Golden hour is all about the tone. If you use something that is the wrong color (temperature) and try to blend it, they will look colorer than the ambient light and it will be weird. This is where gels matter.

Personally I would use speedlites for this, gelled with 1/2 CTO gels. The goal being simple fill. But I work solo, so if I had 1 hour to do an engagement shoot, that's where I'd focus, fast and light. I'd take a few lights too. If one speedlite isn't enough juice for a certain shot, two often can be, and three can sometimes seal the deal. The stands and mounts are all lighter too. And a single, small umbrella or softbox, or even just naked bare lights themselves, are much more portable than a big 48" octa, or 60" modifier.

And I say that as someone who loves to use the Rovelight, 48" octa and 60" umbrella too. I just know that with 1 hour time constraint, I'd want speed.

Golden hour with some fill light = spectacular.

Very best,

Mal, your advice is always thorough and well stated, thank you again! Ok, so I'm glad you said that about gelling because Ive been wanting to try that and have been using a monolight with a vagabond mini and recently the RL. So I always had been timid about gelling because I would think the overall image would warmer, which is good, but not too warm.. or i though I could fix it with proper white balance......That brings up a good point, could or should I even concern myself with a grey card?

I hadn't though about the speedlight (my yn568II) but it just might be the winner... and yeah, ill be alone, I can balance ambient but should i be shooting TTL?

If i gel and ttl or just gel, would I gain any benefit from shooting through a traditional softbox something like the Cheetah qbox or more of the Westcott Apollo... I have both, but I know one is bounce and with ttl or gels, if it matters as much one over the other?

Either way, I know the 6d wont benefit in that regard compared to my 60D I guess what I meant was I am still looking forward to using it with the new lens... will test the low light later for their wedding lol..




  
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Silver-Halide
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Nov 04, 2015 03:43 as a reply to  @ digitalduck's post |  #4

I am doing a Trash the Dress shoot in a few days near the golden hour and I am leaving my only flash that does both TTL and HSS at home. I'm going to use two YN 560IV's on either a flash stand or a monopod held by an assistant. I'll also be using a silver reflector quite a bit.

TTL I'll use for kids running around on the playground, and HSS for anything requiring 1/200+ faster shutter. Keep in mind that you lose a ton of power from the flash AND it eats the batteries up to do HSS. If you only have one flash unit and its bright out, you're going to be shooting it at 1/2 to full power to over power the daylight. I would practice this a few days ahead of time on your kids, spouse, dog, friend, neighbor, ex, etc just so you have an idea. You may be in for a surprise how quickly your batteries drain. Likewise be careful with those modifiers--they'll eat up some of the power of the flash, too.

What is the max flash sync speed for the 60D? I believe its 1/180 for the 6d, and you have to go into the settings to change that (chose 1/2 stop increments, not 1/3). If the 60D can do faster I might chose it for that reason alone. This will allow you to kill more of the ambient daylight.


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digitalduck
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Nov 04, 2015 11:31 as a reply to  @ Silver-Halide's post |  #5

Thanks Silver-Halide!, I think for what id be using my flash for would just be for a bit of fill and some catchlights. I think ill use a 1/2 cto and be able to balance the ambient given the time of day... im wondering, though, if TTL would be sufficient if im only trying to add fill?




  
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Nov 04, 2015 16:43 as a reply to  @ digitalduck's post |  #6

TTL Wont kill the power output below what you could get it setting it manually, but it will be inconsistent. Be ready to use FEC (Flash exposure compensation) to increase or decrease the output. Remember that the stops of light are a logarithmic progression and each stop along the way (-3, -2, -1, 0, 1, 2, 3) represents a DOUBLING/halving of power from the previous number. Salt and pepper to taste.


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digitalduck
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Nov 04, 2015 16:48 as a reply to  @ Silver-Halide's post |  #7

Silver, in your opinion, would I gain any benefit from shooting through a traditional softbox something like the Cheetah qbox or more of the Westcott Apollo... I have both, but I know one is bounce and with gels would it matter as much one over the other?




  
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Nov 04, 2015 17:22 as a reply to  @ digitalduck's post |  #8

Softboxes and other light modifiers are impractical for field use IMHO. They're big and clumsy and require at least one assistant, attract a lot of attention and sniper fire, and are almost guaranteed to generate some windy weather. They're great for studio head shots where you want nice soft, diffuse light and are placing it a meter or so away from your subject. Yes with the apollo firing into the backing and reflecting to the subject its output will be less than the Cheetah. Ergo you will need to use a higher power to achieve the same illumination on the subject. That means shoving two or three flashes into it and firing at half power or more in order to overpower the daylight.

The attached shot was lit by my assistant holding a monopod with two YN 560IV's attached. We had to run to get into position and 60 seconds later, this light was gone. I tip my flash to you if you could bumble around a big soft box and get it done. Even if I could have used a soft box, it would have to be placed further away from the subject so its relative size would have been diminished anyway, thereby reducing any softness compared to what you would get in a studio having the softbox just a couple feet away. By choosing to shoot at the golden hour you've already stated your desire for warm, dramatic, directional light. Soft, diffuse, studio light is the antithesis of this proposal.


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digitalduck
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Nov 04, 2015 17:41 as a reply to  @ Silver-Halide's post |  #9

Silver, thanks for the in depth reply! Actually... the client hasn't stated what time they "want: to shoot, but she just mentioned that the area is nice because it still looks like fall...so, having said that if she confirms a time of around 4 or 5 or asks me what time then yeah, perhaps I will just attempt bare bulb with 1/2 cto for example. If she says something like 2pm then all of a sudden it may be more of a Rove light and balancing ambient. Either way if she goes earlier then I can almost do natural light depending on light and shadows... Ill confirm with her so I have a better idea. Thanks again for the feedback!




  
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digitalduck
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Nov 05, 2015 13:01 as a reply to  @ digitalduck's post |  #10

Spoke to my client. She said she trusts me and wants me to pick the time. She said she knows early and later and great times to get great sun so I figure we'd meet at 4 and get both kinds of light since the sun sets in the mountains around 5.

So that means I have natural light available but would also have time to use my Rovelight with octobox just in case then perhaps move to a bare speedlight gelled with 1/2 cto.... Bare in mind that's just a though form someone who hasn't used gels before. I figure I can move the stand wiht octobox around.

I would think use my sekonic 358 and balance ambient (just to practice) or eyeball it but I also really like this type of style (which I know is also in the processing)




  
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digitalduck
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Nov 06, 2015 10:35 as a reply to  @ digitalduck's post |  #11

Guys, would it make sense to get a gel big enough to cover, say, the rovelight? (which isnt that big) iS it silly to think of gelling the larger strobe and keep it to just the speedlight? What if I can gel the larger strobe and use a boom arm or something to still use the octobox? Just curious..




  
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Nov 07, 2015 10:22 |  #12

The color of the natural light will rapidly change as each 30 minutes passes and that sun falls below the horizon as will the intensity of the light that you want to toss at your clients. The correct answer is who in the heck knows until you get there and see what you are dealing with. So Take everything you need to get the job done right. At 4PM-6PM you can bet Ive 3 got a strobe on the stand. 7-8 pm and i will probably switch to a gel speed light and reflector

always be prepared.


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