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Isabel Cutler | all galleries >> Photoshop Technique Practice > Lighting Comparison
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Lighting Comparison
23-JAN-2013

Lighting Comparison

I had an epiphany yesterday while watching a documentary that featured many professional portraits. Nearly all of them had one side of the face much darker than the other side and they were very effective portraits.

Since I shoot with Canon Speedlights and not studio lights which have "modeling" lights so you can preview the ultimate effect of the full light strength, choosing exposures involves a lot of guesswork, or "chimping".

Having already taken this photo I wondered if I could edit it in Photoshop to darken one side of the face. I decided to make a feather selection of the face at the left and darkened the midtones of the face. Just that slight adjustment makes her face look much better.

I will further experiment and do some slight darkening of the other side of the face, just along the edges, to make it look less full.

Next time I experiment with portraits I will turn down the strength of the flash on the side of the face closer to the camera.

What do you think?


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Canon EOS 7D
1/160s f/8.0 at 37.0mm iso200 full exif

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heather09-Feb-2013 13:54
Me too, Isabel, the one on the right.. lovely portrait work! V
Jim Coffman08-Feb-2013 14:37
I'm with Raymond. I prefer the one on the right.Very nice work..
Raymond08-Feb-2013 14:32
I prefer the one to my right! The colors are a little darker, more natural. It's a superb portrait BTW