Topic: First go with off camera flash.

This is somthing I've been wanting to try for a while now and with the purchase of a courtney flash meter it's all go. I ended up with a mostly blank roll due to my error but I was happy with this one although I should of had more distance between the subject and backround.

Taken on fuji reala 100 with om2 sp and tamron 90mm SP. Two national PE-3057 one high left snoted on 1/4 power and one camera right fired though a fold out diffuser on 1/16 power.
c&c always welcome thanks for looking.

http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2431/4075770313_8dac9dedbc_o.jpg

oh and I got a new scanner which has helped solve  the dust problems!

Last edited by benOM (2009-11-10 18:55:30)

Re: First go with off camera flash.

benOM,

Congratulations on the first try - and to boot on film! (developed by yourself?)

I would say it would depend on the look you are going for. 

From the lighting info, I would think that you were using the snooted flash to expose the face and the other flash to either to fill the shadows?

What kind of fold-out diffuser?

[D]

Bodies: Olympus E-PL1, Nikon D70s, OM1-MD, OM77AF, OMPC,  Ricohflex VII, Super Ricohflex, Canon AE-1
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Re: First go with off camera flash.

For a high contrast dramatic lighting set up (A flash with a snoot is virtually a spotlight) the shot is overexposed. If you want to shot with a dramatic key light you should judge your exposure for the highlights. To reduce the contrast the ratio between that main light and your fill should then be reduced.
Unless you do want dramatic you should set up your fill light then get the key only about a stop and a half over. As long as exposure is correct for the main key light you should end up with a pleasant portrait that gives some modelling to the subjects face but retains all highlights and doesn

Re: First go with off camera flash.

Thanks, yes home developed the fold diffuser is one of those fold out reflectors/ diffusers the big round ones.

Rob thanks for some detailed pointers , I kept notes of the settings for each frame inc aperture and I tryed several different setup's some with out the snoot and the flash's in different places I just happend to prefer this one of the ones that worked.
I had two main problems I set the shutter speed wrong for a few frames on the second roll and the first I'm putting it down to maybe a bad roll it should have been a 36 but only had 21 frames on and when processed in the same tank as the other was mostly blank with no frame numbers for the blank part of the roll, this was from the end of that roll.

Re: First go with off camera flash.

Ben, please ignore if you have another reason for using film in this case.

But did you consider using digital if you're learning off-camera lightings?
I know from experience that hundreds of shots are not abnormal to go through to develop one's lighting setups.

As for the shot, I'd reduce the lighting to the right side of her face to give the photo more dimension.  And maybe pop a small flash at the background to make it more uniform.

Cheers, Will.

Re: First go with off camera flash.

Shadowfox is correct in my opinion. Learning lighting is an art and practice, practice, practice really helps, the instant feedback of digital (and cost) is a big benefit here.   I have picked up a number of cheap flash units and really feel by moving them about and trying different things you can learn a lot more than can be easily taught outside a really good class/club.  Would be painful trying things and waiting for print results (without wanting to start any debate on film/digital).

Geoff

Re: First go with off camera flash.

shadowfox wrote:

Ben, please ignore if you have another reason for using film in this case.

But did you consider using digital if you're learning off-camera lightings?
I know from experience that hundreds of shots are not abnormal to go through to develop one's lighting setups.

As for the shot, I'd reduce the lighting to the right side of her face to give the photo more dimension.  And maybe pop a small flash at the background to make it more uniform.

The main reason is I have no dslr smile . I've often thoght it would be nice to have one but film is so cheap at the moment and prehaps in 3-4 years it wont be as less people use it and the supplys of shortdated dry up a bit and more products are discontinued. I just want to use it before too many are gone for good.

Thanks for the tips, I've found a local camera club and they seem to have a good portrait group so I'm going to pop along and see what there are like I think.

Re: First go with off camera flash.

May I suggest to try a Metz 60 CT4 : I tried many ways to get  a good lighting with several flashes  , I bought , like you , a Courtenay flash meter but the best and more natural lightings I got , were with this Metz flash which is very powerful and has 2 flashes  ,one that I use in indirect lighting  to the ceiling or the nearest wall  , and the other in direct flash  ; the whole in the  automatic mode of the flash: ie you can use  it with any camera  - old praktica or Canon 5D . I bought the 60CT4 in 91 and it never fails , I replaced the Dryfit battery , after 10 years . It works as new and I get very natural lighting with a nice mix of artificial and natural lighting . The only drawback is the weight of the Dryfit battery on your shoulder !

I am a Pentacon and kiev( MF and35 mm) user,and also :contaxII,III,IIa  ,contaflex , contarex bullseye ,voigtlander ....