Wednesday, 9 February 2011

Exercise 40 - Shiny Surfaces

Pre Shoot

I think I'm going to use my lightbox tent for this one. Reading the brief, it's instructions firstly ask you to position an item on the floor and then gets a bit vague about why.

I'm thinking about using a wine glass with water and shooting down into the light tent.

Post Shoot

Shiny surfaces was an interesting exercise. I decided that as I have a big lightbox tent thing (another ebay bargain) that it was pointless replicating the same effect with tracing paper and that I should just use the lightbox.

I didn't see the need to show that the tracing paper acts as a light diffused which reduces the reflection, so I went for a still life arrangement taken horizontally rather than a birds eye view.

I selected a variety of shiny and reflective objects from around the flat and placed them on the coffee table. I used my 430EXII on the radio trigger and my 100mm macro lens, I left the camera on the same settings as the last exercise, as I hadn't used it in between.

Hard Light Reflections





The hard light photos don't show direct reflections of the camera lens or me, but they do show lots of reflections of the light that is aimed at it, and the objects around the room are reflected in the wine glass more often than not.

Just in case anyone wonders - the liquid is water and some soy, didn't want to use clear water as I wanted to see colour reflections.




For the diffused images I used my softbox and moved it around the objects. I took quite a few images, but have just posted these two here as they were all telling a similar story. The reflections around the room were decreased, but a large reflection was now visible on the bird and crystal paper weight.

The side of the glass also reflected a large bright white reflection. Despite being good for most flash photography, the softbox is actually worse with shiny surfaces.

It's interesting to see how well the detail of the table is shown though. the second image is interesting as the blue/green base of the paperweight is reflected against the side of the tea tin.

Images taken with objects inside lightbox



Inside the lightbox the reflections were diminished greatly. In both images above, the layers of colour in the liquid can be seen, almost all of the text on the tea tin can be read and the bird is only reflecting the crystal paper weight, which means that if photographed in isolation, it wouldn't have any reflections in it at all. The textures of the paper weight are also shown.

I know that strictly speaking I haven't followed the instructions, but I have learned more about light reflections on  different types of shiny surface, so I'm happy with that - hope the assessor is!

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