Studio Lighting in Photography
Lighting is such a powerful element in photography. Studio lighting photography is a perfect example of how lighting can affect the quality and feeling of its subject. In order to use the light to our advantage, we must understand the basic characteristics of light, which are intensity, direction, and color.
Light intensity has been also called light strength. The intensity refers to the amount of light available. Light intensity on particular objects can direct a viewer’s attention to a particular person or thing. In theater, a spot light placed directly on a performer can be quite intense. Yet, you are able to clearly see your subject. On a smaller scale, candle lights can be used direct your focus to a single individual or object. However, it is also able to convey a mood or generate a calming and relaxing atmosphere.
Light direction is also very important in photography. The position of the light source puts emphasis on certain features of the person or object. The light sources have three primary locations: front, back, and side. Direct light to the front and back of an object directs our attention to that object. We are able to see the object in detail. Side lighting accentuates certain aspects of the object of a person or object in the form of a silhouette. In some cases, the light source may be the focal point as it is emphasized by the obstruction of the object.
Finally, there is light color. Colors play an important role in photography. The presence of color may put emphasis on certain objects, relay certain moods, and makes the photo more entertaining or real to the viewer or photographer. Color has been known to have certain behaviors associated with them, for example, the color green. One could show envy, elegance, or evening birth or re-rebirth through nature.
The best genre of photography that best utilizes the qualities of light is still life photography. Just like painters, photographers attempt to capture a single moment in time, by capturing a building at different times of day. Emotion or mood can also be expressed through still life portraits of fruit or wine bottles. A prime example of modern day application of still life photography includes e-commerce product images. Special care is taken when positioning a product and lighting is applied to enhance the beauty, and features of the product. All of this is done with the hopes that a customer will see the image and infer product quality, practicality, in some cases, luxury, and style. Lighting can enhance the appeal of a still life object; however, the light can also mask things lurking in the shadows. Mystery, intrigue, and beauty in a single photograph will capture the attention of any viewer.