Thursday, October 11, 2012

It's getting serious, here

So I've been working on my main project, which involves a lot of photography.  I've set up a workspace that will allow me to take photos as I work.  Unfortunately, I had a distinct problem with light.  As long as I was getting full sunlight through the master bedroom window, at the opposite end of the hall, the photos looked grand.  As soon as the sun started moving past that window (shortly after noon, this time of year), the camera started to compensate for the artificial light.  When I uploaded the photos and looked at the folder, I could actually see the photos change from blue-ish with natural light to yellow-ish in artificial light. 

Now, I can compensate for that with digital editing software, but frankly, I'd rather take good pictures to start with and not count on being able to edit it later.  I could also play with the temperature in the white balance settings, etc., but I don't want to be fussing with the camera.  I need to be focusing (no pun intended) on my subject.

Today, I solved that problem.  Check this out.

This photo has been resized, but is otherwise straight from the camera.  It's almost orange.  This is using room lighting, without flash.

 This photo has also been resized, but otherwise untouched.  Huge difference!  This is what half my photos would look like, and the other half would look like the yellow photo, to varying degrees.  Very frustrating.

 Here is our new addition - a light box kit.  We've rigged up light boxes before, without too much problem.  We also played around with a number of different types of lights, but we've never had proper studio lights.  The two bulbs this kit came with are compact fluorescent adjusted to 5200 Kelvin (daylight).  The camera settings go from 5000K to 5300K, so I set it to 5300K to test it out.

The kit came with a choice of backdrops as well, which affix to the back of the box with Velcro.  Facing one way, the two flaps have green and white, with blue and silver available when flipped the other way.

There is also the front flap, which I won't be using very much, since my arms are going to be right in the box.  The doorway has two removable pieces, so the photographer has some choices as to how large to make the opening. 

The light tripod legs are adjustable, and they also have two telescopic sections at the top, where the light fixtures attache to the tripods.  I haven't opened them to full height, so I'm not sure how tall they actually get.  The fixtures themselves are very light weight, so stability is not compromised by extending the height.

This thing is going to see a lot of use in the next while!

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