Back Modifications (3)
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By williamsloan
this is the first time i have been out for a few weeks, i was using a large led light,i am not pleased with the result.

any tips

Tags: General

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Squirrel 15 471 7 England
3 Dec 2014 9:25PM
Hello William

For a first go with something new - good effort- Large LED light take some getting used to.
I feel that the lights may have been too close - the white of the graves stones is too bright. If you have the chance to re shoot it try moving the lights back to give you some light fall off but make sure you don't get your shadow showing in the image. Try a different position - it looks to me as if the lights were to the left of camera, Try light at a 45 degree angle.
Have you heard of the inverse square law? Essentially it means that the further the subject is away from the light source, the larger that light source appears, but the weaker its strength.The trees and stones in the background are better lit because the light is diminished because they are further from the light source - the colours are very atmospheric.
I've tweaked your image slightly and uploaded it.

Keep at it - its early days.

regards Jacqueline
nonur 13 18 13 Turkey
3 Dec 2014 10:07PM
Well advised by Jacqueline. Nevertheless, it's a great effort and I am sure you enjoyed the outing, Billy.
banehawi Plus
18 2.7k 4314 Canada
3 Dec 2014 11:26PM
Hi Billy.

I had the impression you were light painting, but perhaps not as Ive read Jacquelines comment and good advice.

I did upload a mod that suggest to me that 12 seconds or so with the same set-up would look similar to the mod. I used Adobe Camera Raw to reduce exposure, - it gives quity a good result.

The end result is as mentioned above, too much light, so you need a shorter exposure time; or move the lights further away.

Either way, you need to take a look at the finished shot, and decide what changes need ot be made on the fly while you are there. So looking at this would prompt a shorter exposure once you used the LCD image review as your guide.


Irishkate 11 45 121 United Kingdom
3 Dec 2014 11:29PM
Just heard about the inverse square law tonight at camera club, as we have a new projector
which sometimes makes our images too bright.
As Jacqueline has said the grave stones in f/g are too bright but your LED light has worked a treat on the ruins. Top marks to you for something new.
I hope we'll see lots more with your new toy.
Love the sky, the tree and those starbursts.
Kate GrinGrinGrin
Hermanus 10 4 South Africa
4 Dec 2014 3:57AM
I like your image Billy !!
mrswoolybill Plus
15 3.3k 2536 United Kingdom
4 Dec 2014 9:15AM
You have excellent advice above. I'll just mention a few totally different points.

Light and shadow can create wonderful abstract shapes. Think abstract rather than landscape. Look for a pattern of shapes within the frame, rather than a literal representation of the scene as a whole.

In graveyards, the strongest abstract shapes are often created when the light hits the edges of the stones, rather than the flat surfaces. Particularly when, as here, you have carved or scrolled corners at the top.

Next, if you want to include background, it's important to consider where 'level' lies! This can be tricky in a graveyard... The foreground stones look true, but gravestones very rarely stand straight and the background masonry is tilting leftwards. A small clockwise rotation is definitely needed.

Finally, I would try to avoid including street lamps, they just complicate the lighting story.

I think I can see the potential for a stronger from the centre of the frame, I'll give it a whirl.
paulbroad Plus
15 131 1294 United Kingdom
4 Dec 2014 11:06AM
I actually rather like this. Strong and original. OK, one or two bits are a bit bright and the white wall right on the left edge is a bit unfortunate in placing but well done!

The inverse square law is simple physics and was part of necessary calculations with flash and flash close up before these days of auto everything.

Sumply put, light intensity reduces by the reciprocal of the square of the distance. Thus if you move from 2 feet away to 4 feet away, and the light moves the same distance, a camera mounted gun for example, then the power of that light is not halved, it is actually a quarter of what it was.

But with automatics, you can forget it, and if using a continuous light source, LED or tungsten, just use a Meter at the subject position. The inverse square law with continuous light sources and a good meter. Still there, but not relevant.


Chinga Plus
11 102 3 United Kingdom
4 Dec 2014 11:47AM
I like the low lighting and the scene... Looks like a good place to rest.
dudler Plus
19 1.9k 1947 England
6 Dec 2014 3:14PM
The interesting thing to do may be to set up the light some distance away from the camera, to give strong sidelighting on some of the gravestones... Ideally, of course, you need someone to help, or you will need to leave the camera, or the lamp, some distance from where you are.

Manual exposure is clearly the right option: and to get the full effect of a dark night, some minus exposure adjustment is necessary. However, rather oddly, it can work better to expose reasonably normally, and then adjust in processing - that way, you can retain a little detail in the deepest shadows, which tends to look more satisfying. This is what all the mods have done, of course.
Dwaller 14 5 1 United Kingdom
8 Dec 2014 8:04AM
HI Billy
What a wonderful idea, the composition is very good, and being your first try at night shots, I think you have done very well. Keep it upWinkWinkWink

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