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FORUMS General Gear Talk Flash and Studio Lighting 
Thread started 23 Feb 2011 (Wednesday) 04:09
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Slap me if this is schoolkid stuff...gelling a flash

 
Gel
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Feb 23, 2011 04:09 |  #1

Usually when I need to use a flash it's because of a lack of natural daylight and some tungsten lighting.

Over the weekend though I had a wedding where there was plenty of natural light coming in through the windows but where the bride and groom were getting married they were directly under some tunsten lighting.

Anything I can do about that, apart from asking for the light to be turned off??


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Feb 23, 2011 04:44 |  #2

You're gonna have mixed light in that situation, but my experience is; pick the light that is the strongest and gel for that.

Cloudy daylight and tungsten are about 3500K apart, so you're gonna have massive blue windows if you gel for that. If you flash over the tungsten and balance for daylight from the windows, you can probably overpower it. Any tungsten lights that are actually in the frame would need some PP to get closer to white.


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Gel
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Feb 23, 2011 05:36 |  #3

Currently I'm balancing for the tungsten in Lightroom. Dealing with the blue cast of the daylight by desaturating the blue channel.


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Feb 23, 2011 07:28 |  #4

Gel wrote in post #11897517 (external link)
Currently I'm balancing for the tungsten in Lightroom. Dealing with the blue cast of the daylight by desaturating the blue channel.

That's the option in post.. but you get to a point where you can only do so much lightroom / PS corrections. I'd always try and gel for the largest light source. It's easier to fix a few tungsten bulbs than an entire window.


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Feb 23, 2011 08:51 |  #5

Gel wrote in post #11897323 (external link)
Usually when I need to use a flash it's because of a lack of natural daylight and some tungsten lighting.

Over the weekend though I had a wedding where there was plenty of natural light coming in through the windows but where the bride and groom were getting married they were directly under some tunsten lighting.

Anything I can do about that, apart from asking for the light to be turned off??

So what did you do about the natural light? Not a wedding person but if you didn't overexpose the natural light I would assume tungsten exposure at those settings wouldn't have made any difference, isn't it?


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Feb 23, 2011 09:22 |  #6

If you have a nice photo, but you think it's ruined by big blue windows, you could always try to fix it in post. Of course, there is no good solution with lights of different colors (unless you wanted that for creative reasons), but you could do this:

I like making the WB corrections in RAW because it yields better results. I Duplicate the image in Aperture (or Lr if you wish), and then set the WB on one for tungsten and on the other for daylight. Then export both and bring them into Ps and blend them together using masking. Not perfect, but it works. Not easy, but if it's a photo that you really want, this can help solve your problem.


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Dave ­ Jr
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Feb 23, 2011 09:53 |  #7

Just trying to work through this, as I need to learn more about gels myself...

What if you don't want the windows overexposed and the bride/groom are say 90% tungsten lit, then you'd have to use a CTO and adjust the windows in post, is that correct?

Also, if it were reversed, which gel would you use to match the windows?


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rhomsy
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Feb 23, 2011 10:01 |  #8

Dave Jr wrote in post #11898428 (external link)
Just trying to work through this, as I need to learn more about gels myself...

What if you don't want the windows overexposed and the bride/groom are say 90% tungsten lit, then you'd have to use a CTO and adjust the windows in post, is that correct?

Also, if it were reversed, which gel would you use to match the windows?

Gelling effects color temp, not exposure.

If you gel for tungsten then windows go cool. If don't gel, them bride and groom go warm. There is no effect on exposure.


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Dave ­ Jr
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Feb 23, 2011 10:17 |  #9

Yeah, I get that, but earlier Tweak spoke of overpowering the Tungsten, so I was reversing that idea, and saying if it's mostly Tungsten lighting and you try to overpower the remaining daylight (by throwing more flash power), that might result in the windows being overexposed, but I guess my thinking was flawed?


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rhomsy
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Feb 23, 2011 10:47 |  #10

You can underexpose ambient so that it contributes little to the exposure. Then its color becomes irrelevant. However, unless your strobe can light the entire room, you'll end up with an exposed bride and groom, and everything else will be dark or black. So, you'll probably have to work with the ambient and not fight it.


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Feb 23, 2011 11:13 |  #11

rhomsy wrote in post #11898786 (external link)
You can underexpose ambient so that it contributes little to the exposure. Then its color becomes irrelevant. However, unless your strobe can light the entire room, you'll end up with an exposed bride and groom, and everything else will be dark or black. So, you'll probably have to work with the ambient and not fight it.

Colors get stronger when underexposing.

So not only will only your B&G be the only lit things, everything else will be either orange as hell from the tungsten or blue as the sky from the windows.

The flip side is that the B&G will not have either color casts, or only very little blue/tungsten color shifts, the flash tends on the cool side.

Personally, i like my portraits warmer rather then cold, so i'd gel with that in mind if i gel, i don't always gel, and have been in exactly that scenario, the blue windows didn't bother many peeps aslong as the skin colors on the subject were fine.

You can also just go BW.:D


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Gel
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Feb 23, 2011 12:44 |  #12

Just with a WB correction and reduced blue...although I'd like to find a simpler way obviously :D

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Feb 23, 2011 14:40 |  #13

: o

Good job on the WB, but man those shadows... Were you bouncing straight on the ceiling ? bigger front push would of helped....


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Feb 23, 2011 15:11 |  #14

Simplest solution: Make the photo black and white. Color problems solved and your bride and groom will probably think it is really cool they have black and white photos.

I am only being half serious.


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Gel
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Feb 23, 2011 17:21 |  #15

I was bouncing off the ceiling and wall. I never use direct.


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Slap me if this is schoolkid stuff...gelling a flash
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