As Simple As That

I’ve included a selection of some of the portraits that I was able to take during the recent trip to Afghanistan. All of these were taken using natural light which, at the right time of day, or in the right shade, was amazing. The normal light through the day was harsh and not particularly beneficial to portrait work so it was always better to move out of the bright sunlight into better photographic conditions – Not always possible of course but worth it if you can find it. Tight shots are on an 85mm and the wides are on a 24mm.

One of the great things about using natural light is you can still get creative and use the light to your advantage just as you would if you were dropping flashes in to light a portrait up. Try and be aware of where the light is coming from, be aware of the quality of light – Is it diffused through trees or leaves? Is it weak morning light that gives a slight blue feel to the picture? Is it bouncing off a wall that is acting like a reflector? Try and see how the harsh sunlight outside gradually drops off as it lights a long corridor providing a great impromptu ‘studio’.

Become more ‘light aware’ as you go about your daily business. Like anything else it is all about practice but try and teach yourself to become more aware, all the time, about how the light falls at a particular time of day or the way light strikes a surface and constantly look to see how you could then use the light to take better pictures.

Good light  =  good pictures, it’s as simple as that.

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