31 Mar REAL ESTATE PHOTOGRAPHY: LIGHTING WITH 2 FLASHES
“THERE ARE DIFFERENT TECHNIQUES TO ILLUMINATE A SPACE TO ACHIEVE A CONSISTENT LIGHT, WHICH FILLS AND BEAUTIFIES THE SPACE ACHIEVING A SPECTACULAR DEPTH OF FIELD. TODAY WE WILL SEE HOW I ILLUMINATE WITH MY 2 STUDIO FLASHES ELINCHROM QUADRA RANGER “
The bigger a space is the more power in our flashes or the more flashes we will have to use to light it correctly. This post shows pictures taken with 2 radio-synced flashes separated from the camera that achieve a very interesting, consistent and beautiful light in real estate photography. On this occasion I brought my property photography equipment made up of:
- Canon full frame Eos 5-d bodies
- Lens 17-40 Canon Eph 1:4 L USM (my favorite lens for real estate photography)
- A 400-watt Elinchrom Quadra RX generator that mounted a flash torch with a light modifier, in this case a beauty dish. Yes, a beauty dish!
- A slave flash with an Elinchrom receiver.
- Manfrotto tripod.
- Skyport Elinchrom mounted on my camera shoe and from where I control the power of the flashes.
2 FLASHES ON LOCATION, THE FUN BEGINS
When we work with 2 or more flashes, the possibilities that open up in the way we light are very varied. With 2 separate flashes from the camera, we will achieve a filling and directionality of our light that would be impossible to obtain with a report flash mounted on our camera shoe. There are several aspects to consider.
- We will work in manual mode: It is difficult to match the light inside a large space with the light outside, a single flash in TTL will provide the filling we are looking for. With 2 flashes in manual mode, we can illuminate a light difference of up to 9ev and the light is not “forced” inside.
- We will put the flashes outside the camera frame: it seems obvious, but when we shoot with a 17mm the amount of space that “fits” in our photo is enormous. You can easily sneak a tripod into the picture. We can also have light stains on the ceiling (if we bounce) or very hard lights in the first few meters of flash coverage. In this case, I was constantly hiding the flashes behind columns or distancing them from my frame. By distancing the flashes and bouncing them with the appropriate power the resulting light is very natural.
- We synchronize the flashes by radio: there are many radio stations on the market. My 2 favorites are the classic pocket wizards and of course the skyport of my Elinchrom unit. I know that modern reflex cameras already have separate flash shooting. I insist again on the virtues of the manual mode, always.
- Light Modifiers: I have obtained beautiful light with a white translucent umbrella, one of my favorite modifiers. While it is true that in some smaller properties (not all villas or super apartments) the umbrella can be cumbersome when climbing stairs, photographing small rooms, bathrooms… So, in this case, I used a beauty dish. It can give us a very hard light but, knowing how to use it and model it, it is an accessory that I love for its portability and possibilities.
DEVELOPING WITH LIGHTROOM
I emphasize what to do with our raw files, since, back in the studio and with this type of image, the possibilities of developing and aesthetic applications of light are enormous.
With the latest update of Lightroom, it is even easier to reveal the raws and correct fundamental aspects of architecture and optics thanks to its database that recognizes the camera lens, in my case a Canon 17-40mm. To work on the resulting images my development consisted of:
- Develop some photos as a multi-exposure smart subject.
- Adjust the targets in case the customer does not like them too “grey”.
- Correct trapezoidal or concave/convex lines and deformations.
- Adjusting the lights and shadows is extremely easy because of everything discussed in this post.
- Leave the photograph ready for further retouching and focus in Photoshop.
RESULTS AND CONCLUSIONS
Working with 2 flashes (or more) in real estate photography and large spaces is a plus in commercial photography. With this technique, we will obtain an almost perfect shot that will avoid a lot of time working on the computer as it happens with other techniques.
If you have more questions or want to further develop the technique of real estate photography with various flashes do not hesitate to write to me, I will be happy to assist you.
Until the next post!
TAGS: Business, Cameras, Photography, Real Estate, Marbella, Professional, Advertising, Workshop