Brothers In A Good Light

We had thought about canceling this session.  It rained off and on throughout the day.  Thankfully we didn't.  The rain let off and the sun shone behind a thin layer of clouds in the same way that an umbrella diffuses the light from a flash.  So the light was soft and directional and by placing the subject a different angles to the sun you can achieve different effects.

I always look for cool transitional areas.  Areas that are in full sunlight but transition slowly to shade.   This are in our downtown has some of those that I like.  This is an overpass.  The rocks make an interesting background.  If you move the subject far from the opening you get flat light.   As you move closer to the entrance, you start to get some direct sunlight that you can use as an accent light on the face or shoulder.


Here is one with the sun almost directly behind me.  You can see that there is very little shadow on the face.  The little bit of shadow that is there has a very soft transition showing what a great soft box the Lord provided with the clouds.

Here is one of my favorite walls.

This gate was a new find.  I've probably walked by it a hundred times.

A yellow door.  Wasn't sure about this one but I like the rustic look.  Notice how he has the direct light giving a nice highlight on the right side.  Again, you have control in a situation like this.  If the highlight is too big or too bright, back the subject farther into the doorway.

Not much to say here.  Adorable kids sitting on the curb.


I think these are my favorites of the bunch.  The sun is behind them giving the great accent light on the hair and shoulders.   The sky behind just blows out.

GEEK TECH STUFF: If you're not interested skip this paragraph.

This can be a challenging photographic situation.  Most cameras set to automatic will try to meter this down to get details in the bright sky.  And that will put the subject into almost complete silhouette.  That's a cool look if that is what you are going for.  If not, you have to do a little work to get details in the subject.

If you have exposure compensation you can dial in some positive number.  This acts like an offset.  Whatever your meter thinks is the correct exposure, this positive number will be added to it.  For instance, here I dialed in +2/3 or +1 depending on how much sun I had in the frame.

If you have exposure lock on your camera you can point your camera toward something that you want to meter on, press and hold the exposure lock button, recompose the photo and press the shutter release.  I used that technique here as well.  I have not settled on my favorite way yet.  In this case, I would point at the shadow in front of the subject or maybe his dark jeans, hold the auto exposure (AE) lock button, recompose and shoot.


Maybe these are my favorites.   I can not make up my mind.  I always like the silly faces.


Wow, this is seriously the longest post I've ever made but hopefully on top of enjoying the photos you may have picked up a little something that you did not know before.

Be blessed!



Well hello there baby.

I had the privilege of photographing our friends' baby yesterday.  This baby, we are particularly happy to see because we have been praying for her for such a long time.  And now she's here and she's beautiful.  Mommy and daddy and grandma are extremely happy and she is destined to be neglected I'm sure (if by neglect you mean spoiled like crazy). :)

The shots were taken in the hospital. because of that I wanted to travel light so I brought the camera, a flash, an umbrella, and a stand. I didn't bring any reflectors because I knew there would be no shortage of white sheets, white pillows, and other items that can be used as stand in reflectors. So some of the shots were taken with the umbrella and for some I shot the flash into the ceiling.

Thanks to the nurse on this one for setting up this shot. She was a good sport.

There are those eyes.

Thinking about Daddy here!

Sweet feet.

Thinking about the photographer here.

We can't wait to see you again baby, oh yeah by the way get used to the flash. :)


Ice Cream

I should probably have named this "The Aftermath Of The Ice Cream Truck". Our kiddos got their first ice cream from the ice cream truck. We were playing board games on the living room floor when, ever so quietly, you could hear the tell tale sounds of the truck of bliss. Out the garage door they went parents in tow. We did not have time to grab a camera for the purchase but captured the ensuing feeding frenzy.


Again the light here is so nice. The sun was low in the sky at sunset so you can see the direct sunlight creating a rim light while the still blue sky creates great flat light on the faces.

Oh yeah, did I mention that while me and the boys were playing Angry Birds Space board game, Maggie was getting her hair colored (temporarily of course).



Doing photography for others has it's own challenges and thereby inspires creativity. However, the busyness of life sometimes drowns the inspiration to photograph the amazing things that surround me everyday. Today, I got to go to my children's swimming lessons. My children are perfect (to me), the lighting was perfect . . . Inspiration.

It seems like once I realize that the light is good I get into a zone. I recall reading an article about a famous photographer. A junior photographer had a chance to tag along with him one day. Some advice that he gave was that photographers spend too much time concentrating on the subject and not enough on the light. His approach was that once you have great lighting, put a subject in it. Everything looks better when it is lit well. So true! I encourage all of you aspiring photographers to learn as much as you can about light.

Here you have all of the reflective surfaces of a pool combining for wonderful flat light.

Here you have the sun behind the subject creating beautiful rim lighting.