Saturday, June 30, 2007

For Andrei

Hey gangsta,
I've been working hard on my flash and would like to know your opinion about the ratios this time. Thanks, pal.

This person was lining the streets of Springville with flags to receive a dead soldier's body (he was killed in Irak)

(self explanatory)


Ikuru said...

Hey Jero,

I liked the swimming and fire picture as well. Nice work!
Well, I'm not Andrei, but I have some comments on your use of flash. I think the two pictures here are techinically fine, but I just think you might have done better without flash. Last summer, I was crazy about flash and got a hang of it. I shot pictures technically fine and pleased a photo editor but nothing beyond that. I think the idea of lighting the main subject's face perfectly is erraneous. The idea is similar to getting typical sports pictures, which are often boring. Well, I learned from my mistakes and refrained from using flash - instead I tried to look for natural light, moment, composition and expression. And, I did better in that way. Now, I mostly use flash just to get safe pictures. Sure, it can make interesting pictures by slow sync or something. But, just for the sake of lighitng face or body often leads you to miss better pictures. That's what I learned from my experience...

Jeronimo Nisa said...

thanks a lot Ikuru!
But what will you do in a case like this one? I mean, the light was behind the guy... He would have been just a silhouette. And I couldn't take the shot from the other side.
Well, I guess I should have been patient and wait for the right moment.
Thanks a lot again for your advice.

Ikuru said...

Well, I don't know if you could have gone to the other side or just wait until he gets better light. I would get close to him, get down and shoot up so that you would be able to get rid of the lines. Or, I might try to get as close to the guy's face as possible and shoot through the flag. Mediocre silhoutte picture tends to be cliche, so I might step back and make the guy smaller, frame with people or shadow or something. I would also take the rule of the third into consideration while recomposing. I think you have many choices, but it's important to figure out what will work and what won't or what is more likely to work than others. I always pay attention to the background, light, the number of people around me, how expressive they are, whether they will move a long distance or short distance etc... For instance, if there is more than one person, I would always have an option of using a person to frame another person. But, I am not saying you shouldn't use flash. I think there isn't such a thing as a right to way to make pictures in any circumstance, but I just wanted to tell you about my experience and what I learned from it so that you may not make the mistake that I did.

andrei said...
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andrei said...
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andrei said...

Hihi, your ratios are dead on this time, but does this help? The direction of the flash is sort of weird, since I can see shadows of his left hand all over the place.

In my opinion the point of flash is not to just show a face, but to make a good picture. As an example, you could look at Brandon's picture of the piano and the dog ( He overtoned it, but the flash part in that picture is pretty damn' good. That's effective flash use.

Also, it looks like the sun in your picture was at a perfect angle to create on the guy's face the Rembrandt triangle that Rita was speaking about. If you hadn't used a flash, you maybe could have gotten the guy's right side of the face perfectly lit, while you would still see the flags, but in more dramatic light. After all, it's someone's death we're talking about in this story, right? The background would have been darker and not so obvious and perhaps the whole mood of the picture would be different. Many times, flash kills the mood in a picture, unless it's really well used.

Anyway, these are just a few thoughts. I wasn't there. You know better what you had to work with.

Amanda said...

Interesting conversation. Appreciated.