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06-28-2011, 08:18 AM   #1
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1:3 flash fill ratio question

QuoteOriginally posted by kp4te Quote
Normally a good point is a ratio of 1:3. This means the FILL flash in our example is set up for ISO 200 f Stop 11. Yes the flash output from this unit is overexposing the subject 2 stops over your main light, but in a controlled way. This is made by turning off the main flash and measuring and adjusting the FILL flash output the same way as the MAIN was done. Now you turn on both flashes. You have your camera set up for 1/125 speed, ISO 200 and 5.6 aperture, MAIN flash ISO 200 f5.6, FILL flash ISO 200 f11. You have set up your camera for taking the portrait picture at a flash output ratio of 1:3, FILL is in the third stop over the stop where the MAIN ( MAIN been 1).
While searching this forum I found this interesting old thread. The posters may be long gone, but I'd appreciate anybody else to provide some feedbacks to this.

According to kp4te's suggestion, what would be the result of the FILL (off camera) flash setting to 2 stops overexposure ? would it make the person's face look less wrinkled?

Would it be better if the camera is set to F11 ISO200 to match the off-camera flash while the on-camera flash becomes the "FILL" ?

Thanks in advance.


old thread:
https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-flashes-lighting-technique/12172-c...html#post97467

06-28-2011, 10:37 AM   #2
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I can't say I know the answer to the second part well, but if you overexpose with flash by 2 stops the lighting will be a)harsh
b)unless you measure the light for the 2 stops over exposed, the brightest side of the subject will be "blown out" (just white with no details to recover)
now if you use a softbox and done the same, as long as you expose for the 2 stops over exposed, you will have nice soft light.
image being about to bring the quality of window light with you everywhere, that to me is what a softbox can do if used right

hope this helps

cheers
06-28-2011, 11:57 AM   #3
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If you turn your fill up above your main light, it's no longer fill light.

Your main/key light is your primary light that is providing most of the light on the face. Your fill is used to fill in the shadow areas that the main light creates.

Here are two examples:

No fill, with a single light to camera right:




See how the shadow on my right cheek is dark?

In this one, the fill is two stops under the main light:




The nose shadow is 'filled in' by the fill light.

In the second one, if I had put the fill two stops higher than the key light, it would no longer be the fill, and would completely overpower the main light.
06-28-2011, 04:20 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by slip Quote
I can't say I know the answer to the second part well, but if you overexpose with flash by 2 stops the lighting will be a)harsh
b)unless you measure the light for the 2 stops over exposed, the brightest side of the subject will be "blown out" (just white with no details to recover)
now if you use a softbox and done the same, as long as you expose for the 2 stops over exposed, you will have nice soft light.
image being about to bring the quality of window light with you everywhere, that to me is what a softbox can do if used right

hope this helps

cheers
Thanks. Just to see if I understand you correctly, you're saying use a SoftBox on off-camera flash that is 2 stops over (ex. metered F11 with the softbox on it) while the camera is set for F5.6 ? with the MAIN set for F5.6 ?





QuoteOriginally posted by alohadave Quote
If you turn your fill up above your main light, it's no longer fill light.

Your main/key light is your primary light that is providing most of the light on the face. Your fill is used to fill in the shadow areas that the main light creates.

Here are two examples:

No fill, with a single light to camera right:




See how the shadow on my right cheek is dark?

In this one, the fill is two stops under the main light:




The nose shadow is 'filled in' by the fill light.

In the second one, if I had put the fill two stops higher than the key light, it would no longer be the fill, and would completely overpower the main light.
Thanks, nice shots !

How would it look like to have the off camera "MAIN" firing two stops higher than what the camera is set for ? I believe that's suggested by the original poster?


Last edited by jackseh; 06-28-2011 at 04:39 PM.
06-28-2011, 06:15 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by jackseh Quote
Thanks. Just to see if I understand you correctly, you're saying use a SoftBox on off-camera flash that is 2 stops over (ex. metered F11 with the softbox on it) while the camera is set for F5.6 ? with the MAIN set for F5.6 ?







Thanks, nice shots !

How would it look like to have the off camera "MAIN" firing two stops higher than what the camera is set for ? I believe that's suggested by the original poster?
gee, I am not too up on the settings (will look into it) but a lot of pro's, when the subject is in bright sun.... meter for the bright sun and then put the softbox flash 1-2 stops brighter then sun, that way the soft light from the softbox replaces the harsh light from the direct sun.(use your flash meter to read that it is over 1-2 stops)
hope this makes sense... you replace a harsh light source with a soft light source by "overpowering" the hard light


cheers and if you have any question I am no expert but I am sure lots on this site are... just read lots of books and play with my softbox

Last edited by slip; 06-29-2011 at 03:08 AM. Reason: should read 1-2 stops
06-28-2011, 08:36 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by jackseh Quote
Thanks, nice shots !

How would it look like to have the off camera "MAIN" firing two stops higher than what the camera is set for ? I believe that's suggested by the original poster?
You'd have a wicked blown out shot.

Say your camera meter called for 1/200th at f8. If you set your main light for two stops brighter than that, then it'd be exactly like putting a +2 EV on your subject where the flash is hitting.

However, if you adjusted your camera settings to 2 stops less to compensate for the flash, then your subject will be properly exposed by your flash, and the background/ambient will be two stops underexposed (on blue skies, this will give you a really deep, rich blue, and cloudy skies will tend to reveal texture in the clouds or make it look moody).
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