While I'm waiting for the weekly challenges to start from Digital Photography school I decided that I should start learning how to use the flash and lighting equipment that I got for Christmas (Thanks Mom and Dad!). I wasn't sure what I was going to shoot. At first I thought I would take one of The Boy's giant stuffed animals as my model and just start moving the light around it and vary the intensity of the flash to see what results I got. Not exciting, though educational. Life can't always be exciting when learning something new.
During my daily reading of the news and photography related sites I stumbled across Jared Polin's monthly challenge for January. In it he wants pictures of your bedroom. I thought, ah hah! Jonah and I will often rough house and play on the bed in our spare bedroom. I would set up the lighting equipment and have The Boy jump up and down while I shoot away and make adjustments to the camera and flash. The Boy LOVES to jump, genius!
I picked up The Boy from daycare and got started setting up the light stand, shoot through umbrella, flash, sync chord, and camera. I asked The Boy to take off his shoes and start jumping away. He was having fun, I was having fun. The lighting rig was set up camera left at about 7 feet or so and pointed downwards. I wasn't getting the results I wanted, the room was over exposed from what I wanted to achieve. Despite this issue I was able to get a couple of cute shots.
I realized part of my issue. I still had auto ISO turned on my camera so all of my shots were at ISO 1600. I wanted the ISO to be at 100! I corrected my mistake. I lowered the flash and increased the intensity of the flash from about 1/64 to 1/8. I wanted some moody lighting to be moving from the lower left to the upper righthand side. Unfortunately The Boy was done with jumping.
The thing with 3 year olds is that they are curious, very curious. The Boy wants to know about anything and everything. He decided that instead of jumping on the bed he wanted to inspect the flash and umbrella. The inspection turned into pressing the buttons and trying to make the flash work. Things ended up with pretending it was raining and The Boy needing to hang out under the umbrella because "it's raining." I took one shot of him next to the umbrella and liked the result and kept shooting. I couldn't be happier with the results.
My favorite is at the end with using a blue diffuser on the flash.