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Portrait Photography: What Is Light Fall Off?

9/27/2020 ISO 1200 Magazine 0 Comments

One of the many properties of light is the predictable way it becomes less and less bright the further it travels from its source. Scientifically this is often called the inverse square law but photographer Gavin Hoey has no time mathematics in his small home studio. So  he’s got a far more visual way to demonstrate exactly how light fall off in the real world.

As Gavin explains, understanding how fast or slow light falls off is an essential lighting skill for any photographer who needs to take control of a scene. Light fall off can be used to create areas with even illumination, giving your subject the freedom to move, or you can use rapid light fall off as a way to create a scene with high contrast.

After Gavin has covered the technical side of light fall off he sets up a simple shoot using a large black and white parabolic umbrella. Using his understanding of light fall off, Gavin able to correctly light his models head but allow the studio floor to become underexposed without the need for post-processing.

__________________________________ What Is Light Fall Off?
0:00 Intro
0:32 What is light fall off?
1:06 Marking out light fall off
2:37 What light fall off looks like
4:28 Setting up the shoot
5:34 One light shoot
6:55 Add two extra lights
7:40 Three light shoot
8:30 Conclusion and Subscribe

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About Gavin Hoey:

Gavin Hoey, an AdoramaTV veteran, is a seasoned photographer, a master of Photoshop, Olympus ambassador and trainer of all things photographic.Let's Get Connected:

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