Not Very Busy, So I Decided To Practice A Bit

1 week 18 hours ago - 1 week 18 hours ago #746088 by CharleyL
A little practice lighting what is a pretty classic shot, but combining the shiny apples, the wine glasses, and the wine bottle can make it a bit difficult to get a good shot. I have set up for this several times over the years. Grapes would also be in the shot, but we seem to have eaten all of them. A speedlite on edge behind and below the table provided most of the light for the wine bottle. 12" soft box straight up above the table, and a strobe with snoot high and behind, provided the light for shiny bottle top and edge light for the bottle.

These are just a few "Props" put together on a table top in my studio for practice. Though the apples and wine are real (apples taken from the kitchen - to be returned/eaten) I doubt the wine will ever be more than just a "Prop". It's already been in my "prop storage" for a while, and has been used before. I think it's been about 10 years since the last time I did this (but with a different wine bottle). It's fun, and can be a bit of a challenge, because, for me, it has never been done with the same gear. This time, everything but the table top is new and different than last time. The table top is sitting on top of a wooden stool, which is on top of two 8" high "Apple Boxes", because I don't bend as well for low shots any more. 

Charley 


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4 days 19 hours ago #746200 by Photo Junky
Lighting is really good on this one.  But help me understand, you say you have a light under the table?  Does the cloth have a hole in it under the bottle?  


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4 days 15 hours ago - 4 days 15 hours ago #746207 by CharleyL
No, it's a speedlite on a short stand, so it's lower than the table top and turned 90 degrees, so the lens of the speedlite has a tall light profile. It's angled up at about 40 deg. to shine on the back side of the lower and wider part of the wine bottle, yet be out of sight of the camera. I also used one of the white plastic diffusers over the end of the speedlite, so as to light the wine more evenly and reduce the ability to see the light shape through the wine.

Above the table and shining straight down at the table is a 300 watt/sec studio strobe with a 12 X 12" square Godox soft box. Off to camera left is a 300 watt/sec studio strobe with a 32" Octal soft box, and to light the cap and top of the bottle, there is a 300 watt/sec strobe with a snoot mounted high and to the rear of the table. All of these could have been speedlites.

I had my 10' wide black studio backdrop rolled down to the floor and located about 4' behind the table, but I don't think any of the light was reaching it, so I'm not certain that it mattered. Behind the backdrops on my studio wall is a large white board (modern blackboard), because I sometimes need it when doing training sessions (retired engineers talk by drawing pictures). It might have shown in the shoot, so I decided to use the black backdrop to be certain of a black background.

The table isn't actually a table. It's a square (with rounded corners) table top that was never made into a table. (A flea market find). It's sitting on top of a wooden stool that I purchased several years ago from Walmart. Because, at my age, I don't bend very well any more, I placed the stool on top of two 8" high Apple Boxes to get all of this high enough for me to be able to photograph easily. "Apple Box" is a name coined by the early movie industry, for a set of stackable box spacers of 12 X 20" size and 8", 4", 2", and 1" tall, so they can be stacked in different combinations to achieve height differences in 1" increments from 1" to 15". For this shoot, I just used the 8" high and two of them side by side, taken from two sets of these that I built for my studio several years ago.

Some time back I had purchased small square table cloths in several colors to fit this table top, and chose the burgundy for this shoot. I also have gray, black, white, and I think light blue. They came in pairs from Amazon, and they have been great, because if I'm doing a food shoot and have a spill, I have a back-up to substitute. I don't always use these as table cloths. Some times they get used as backgrounds behind products, etc. At less than $10 each, they have proven to be very handy in the studio. I'm trying to come up with a way to hang them flat, but vertical when in storage, so I don't need to iron them before use, but for now they are folded and in 1 gallon zip lock bags to keep them clean, and the ironing board and iron need to be used to get the wrinkles from storage out before every use.

You don't need to go through all of this trouble, unless you want to duplicate my result exactly. Different colors and props can be used to achieve similar results, but this type of shoot is great training for learning lighting techniques. The last time that I did this was many years ago, and I was interested to see if I could get nearly the same result again, since all of my lights, camera, etc. are all new since then. It was actually easier this time. The lights seem to be a big improvement over what I had to work with last time. Speedlites could be used in every position, but since I have the studio strobes I used them. I also chose to hang the high mounted lights from the ceiling lighting grid of my studio, but stands can be used. Very low light settings are needed, so lighting is easy. Light placement is the bigger challenge.

Charley



 


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4 days 15 hours ago #746211 by db3348
Very nicely done, Charley :thumbsup:


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1 day 16 hours ago #746292 by CharleyL
I went shopping and added some grapes to the shot. Back when I originally did this, I had grapes, but no apples. So now both grapes and apples are included. The table top isn't perfectly flat, and it showed in some of my earlier shots, so I turned the table top  around to make it less obvious in the shot too. A tiny bit more light adjustment, and this was my final shot before putting everything away. 

This went far better for me than my last attempt, back in the days of film and constant lighting. We have come a very long way in Photography Technology since Film, both in the camera technology and the available lighting equipment. These shots are not adjusted in any way in Photoshop or any other graphics program, but I did reduce the size of this one using Irfanview to make it load easier.

Charley

Make: Canon
Model: Canon EOS 90D
Lens: TAMRON 18-400mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC HLD B028
ISO: 100
Aperture: f/13.0
Shutter speed: 1/40 sec
Captured: Tue, 22 Nov 2022 12:57pm


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