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How to understand how this photo was created.

edited February 2016 in technique & style & stuff
I know its a full-frame camera and bounce flash was used. but what other techniques were used? Also what was done in post..  Thanks In advance!image


  • I think this could be a pretty simple shot. We can speculate a little bit:

    At time of shooting:
    * A large aperture was used (background is blurry, focus is sharpest on woman on left then there is quick falloff of sharpness).
    * A high ISO was likely used (looks a little noisy, and the venue is probably relatively dark).
    * Lighting looks fairly flat on faces, catchlights in man's eyes look on axis with the camera - could be a speedlight on the camera or bounced on a wall or ceiling directly behind or above photographer, a diffuser, or a softbox/umbrella directly above the camera, or a combination? Given the venue and the snapshot feel of this, I would doubt the photographer would have a softbox/umbrella - it's probably a simple setup like a speedlight on the camera (bounced, or with a diffuser or something).

    After shooting:
    * Colors look fairly saturated - may have been bumped up.
    * JPG artifacts are visible - could be evidence of fairly strong noise reduction, oversharpening, or even low quality JPG settings.

    If I were trying to recreate this, maybe a 24-70 f/2.8 lens, speedlight on camera bounced off the ceiling or wall behind me, manual mode with shutter set to 1/125, aperture f/2.8, ISO set to whatever necessary to bring the background environment in, TTL flash. An improvement might be to use a slightly smaller aperture so everyone is a little sharper than they are, and perhaps play with the shutter speed. Could go slower if the flash is the main source of illumination on the subject, and then the ISO could be brought down.
  • Neil vNNeil vN Administrator
    We have had this as a previous discussion:  

    And we couldn't quite figure it out, aside from that it is most likely bounce flash ... which would mean the  photographer has some surface somewhere behind him - a wall or part of of the club - that he could bounce the flash off. 

    Most likley, a high ISO setting. 

    Post-processing ... minimal. 
  • The photo from the previous discussion Neil refers to I think was much tougher to figure out.
  • Was I right about the full frame though? 

    thanks guys!
  • I just got a full-frame (Canon 6D) a few months ago, so I'm not sure how you would tell.
  • MrNYSE, it does not need to be full frame to take this photo.
  • Neil vNNeil vN Administrator
    Yup, you don't need full-frame cameras for this photo. 
    That said, I would think it most likely was taken by a FF camera. For equivalent sensor technology, the full-frame camera will always have a stop advantage over the crop sensor camera. And once you go into the realm of low-light photography, or high-ISO bounce photography, the full-frame sensor will give you better results. 
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