Before taling about the 3 easy tips for lighting in darkness scenario….
In other posts I happened to repeat a phrase to which I am very attached or that, in the end, photography is nothing more than a “lucky” combination of light, color, shapes and movements. In this post we will focus in particular on light and we will do so by analyzing the key elements that you must consider when taking photographs in the dark or in any case in low light conditions.
Prepare your set before shooting
Let’s start our list about the 3 easy tips for lighting in darkness scenario. Although today’s cameras offer sophisticated post-production systems, I do not hide the fact that I have always liked to ensure that my shots are already close to the original the moment I go to take them. In this, lighting plays a fundamental role, especially when dealing with photography in the dark.
Some tips: get as far away as possible from all light sources. Some might argue that this leads to, in the end, a “not very lively” image. True! But this is not necessarily a flaw once you have chosen to photograph in low light conditions.
At the same time, familiarize yourself with the tools your camera offers you to create interesting color variations in “dark sauce”: masks and filters above all.
Play with white balance when you have dark backgrounds
Let’s continue our list about 3 easy tips for lighting in darkness scenario. An aspect that you will immediately realize when you have to choose the right lighting in the dark, is that which concerns the definition of an ideal configuration of those photos in which you have a light subject, for example a plate with food inside, with a dark background. , whether it is made up of an empty, dark space or a particularly dark table or wall.
In these cases, the white balance can be of great help. It is a technique that must be learned in pre and post production; it is therefore not something you use only on your reflex or pc. You need to master the same technique on both instruments.
White balance can help you make dark background photos significantly cooler. How? There is no definitive guide on the subject because there is a lot of subjectivity and a lot of variability with respect to possible scenarios and subjects. However, I can give you some advice that is not at all obvious. Start from the basic configuration and move on by doing several tests towards solutions with greater and lesser balance.
Try and try again until you get the desired effect, also working on the “temperature” of your white. For example, sometimes, in low-light scenarios, I like to work on cold white (to be clear the one with blue shades).
Change your viewing angle
One last, how simple (but very effective) piece of advice I want to give you when shooting in low light or when you are shooting subjects with a dark background is to rotate your shooting angle by 45 degrees. Example: You are framing your subject at what you think is the best angle of view.
Perfect! Do it! But now try to take two more photos by rotating 45 first counterclockwise and then clockwise. What do you think of the two new photos? Did they add anything to your initial intuition? Don’t you notice some improvement in reflex management?