July 10 2011 - Photo Jottings

July 10 2011


Another interior shot.

Here’s a sample shot from a real estate job using the Sony A580 and Sigma 10-20mm F/4-5.6 lens.  This bedroom was really small, but nicely decorated, with custom shutters that I wanted to highlight in the closed position, which worked out well as that would hide the house next door.  Remember, you don’t want to include anything that doesn’t make the image stronger.

The set-up required three off-camera flashes, and two 8′ light stands.  I used a flash on the far right, up high and pointed at the corner joint to bounce some fill light (I think 1/4 power, no gels or umbrella) to the right side of the bed and carpet.  The second flash and stand was placed right beside and behind the camera position, bounced up high in the corner to add some cross lighting (1/8 power) which provides some fill to the foot board and diffuses the ceiling fan shadow.  The third flash was put on top of a dresser on the left with a snoot (rolled up piece of construction paper) to avoid light spill, and pointed down and directly at the very dark fake fir bed throw, and to a lesser extent the purple pillow.  The throw really soaked up the light, I think I used a half power blast from the flash unit!  Running hard, undiffused light across textures like that really makes the details come out, and using a snoot (and pointed slightly down) keeps the strobe light from spreading to unwanted areas.

The end result was is what you see below, after a little photoshop action.  Due to the small room, I used a very wide 12mm (18mm equiv) because I wanted to get the shutters in the shot, and balance that extra area on the left with the bedside table and lamp on the right.  This image to me looks a little too wide, but it’s important to get certain details in a shot (like the expensive shutters), so I compromised a little in the interest of helping to sell the house, that’s why they hire me right?

I ended up cropping the image by about 300 pixels all the way around, did some minor highlights/shadows adjustments, and trimmed the white balance.  The single image was shot
in RAW.  Specs are; F/9, 1/8sec, ISO 200, 12mm.  I used F/9 instead of my usual F/7.1 to lower the value of the flash output so I wouldn’t have to manually reset all three flash units.

Click for larger image
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