Know Light . . . Know Photography

“Light makes photography.  Embrace light.  Admire it.  Love it.  But above all, know light.  Know it for all you are worth, and you will know the key to photography.” ~ George Eastman

This past week or so, the light on the east coast, particularly NJ, has been quite awful.  There has been so much cloud cover, rain and a Nor’easter this past Friday.  We are expecting to be hit with yet another Nor’easter this Wednesday.  March has come in like a LION! 

Being a natural light photographer, you can imagine the difficulties the lack of light can cause.  For the most part, during the winter months, my photography is primarily taken on the weekends, since I’m home during more of the day time hours.  However, the past two weekends have been a bit difficult.

Any type of photography requires one to learn about light.  Light is essential to photography, you can’t have a photo without it.  The type of light you prefer is really an art, you must study how it affects the subject you are photographing, whether it’s people, things or landscapes.  You MUST know how the light will affect what you are photographing, not all light is the same.  The time of day and the weather play a huge role in how a photograph will turn out.  That’s why it’s so very important to study the light and to learn how to use it to make for the perfect photograph.

My friend Carolyn, of Sixteen Miles Out, and I were discussing the lack of light I have been experiencing and how I had begun to use my flash to compensate for the lack of light.  Now, I will say up front, I am not too versed in flash photography.  Flash photography is an entire type of photography all of it’s own, and I am not very good at it.  Carolyn and I decided to do an experiment and link our blogs so you can see how each of us interpret and use light in our photographs.  Please take a look at her photographs here.

I decided to try and photograph the same basic setup demonstrating a few photographs each with a different lighting situation.  In each of these photographs, the exposure was not touched in post editing.

03-04-2018 Daffodils_20_LR
50mm; ISO 400; 1/60 sec; f 1.6 – No flash fired
03-04-2018 Daffodils_19_LR
50mm; ISO 200; 1/60 sec; f1.4 – Flash fired
03-04-2018 Daffodils_33_LR
50mm; ISO 500; 1/60 sec; f1.4 – No flash fired

In my opinion, the natural light photographs are clear winners, (I prefer the third with ISO 500).  Even at ISO 500, there is no noticeable noise, the photo looks more natural, less harsh shadows, clearly my favorite.  In my opening photo for today’s blog, “Be Still & Know” this photo was taken on Sunday which was quite the opposite from Saturday, just a wonderful day for natural light. Just enough diffused light which made for some absolute beautiful photography!

I hope you weren’t too bored with the technical side of photography.  I’ll see you back here next week for some natural light photographs.

Until then . . .

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