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View Full Version : how to get the "glow"



neoserenity333
10-06-2007, 11:33 PM
any tips on how to get that "glowing" look for portraits such as this: http://www.flickr.com/photo_exif.gne?id=1503501732

i'm guessing it's backlighting and a fill flash?

TheObiJuan
10-07-2007, 12:49 AM
I don't see any signs of backlighting or fill flash. Perhaps a reflector to camera left?
No catchlights or minimized shadows.
What I think you see as "glow" is a loss of contrast due to flare. This happens when shooting into the sun.
The sunlight may be providing an indirect hair light in this photo.

toriaj
10-07-2007, 01:21 AM
I used no artificial light when I took this candid. The sun was shining at about 10 o'clock to her -- her left front. I did raise the exposure of the face in PP.

29524

TheObiJuan
10-07-2007, 04:17 AM
Great shot! Nice contrast.

Had you shot 2ft to your left and faced the sun you would have achieved a contrast-less glow that the OP was searching for.

mcenut
10-07-2007, 09:29 AM
any tips on how to get that "glowing" look for portraits such as this: http://www.flickr.com/photo_exif.gne?id=1503501732

i'm guessing it's backlighting and a fill flash?

I don't like this photo. The background is too bright and the model just fades into and gets lost in the foreground. It's sort of like looking into the sun, all you see is the brightness and nothing else.

A reflector, or fill flash, on the models face would have added the needed emphasis on her and pulled her out of the muddy back and foreground.

This photographer may have experience with photography but has little to no experience with design. In my opinion a successful photographer needs both.

A very poor portraiture example indeed.

griptape
10-07-2007, 10:34 AM
If you're looking for blown highlights, just shoot towards the sun.

TheWengler
10-07-2007, 10:43 AM
As far as I'm concerned it's just a matter of taste. Personally I like the more natural looking portrait posted by toriaj but I can also see why you like the one you linked to.

My girlfriend shot this of me, pointed into the early evening sun. To me it looks like there's some sort of film over it. The first picture is the original and the second is my attempt at fixing it. I was having a hard time making it look right. It always seemed like either there was a lack of contrast or there was too much. Oh well.

neoserenity333
10-07-2007, 11:15 AM
thanks all for the wonderful and prompt insight!

sorry, mcenut, not trying to say that's what i would want for every portrait. i'm still a newb, so just playing around with various methods. thanks for your tips on how to make it more "appealing" though!

zmikers
10-07-2007, 04:38 PM
Here's my opinion, not that it means much at all. I like the portrait posted by the OP. Its not a style I would choose all of the time, but I like it here. New ideas and a variety of techniques are always, if anything, interesting to see.

toriaj
10-07-2007, 08:33 PM
ObiJuan, I'm glad you liked the shot :)

Lukas, I think you did a good job on your portrait. My new favorite technique is to put my edit on a new layer and play with the opacity until I get the look I was really going for.

TheWengler
10-07-2007, 08:54 PM
Lukas, I think you did a good job on your portrait. My new favorite technique is to put my edit on a new layer and play with the opacity until I get the look I was really going for.

I'll give that a shot. I don't have much experience with layers. I think the problem is that the level of contrast varies across the picture. Since the sun is hitting the back of my head but not the front I can only get the contrast correct on one of the locations.

toriaj
10-07-2007, 09:02 PM
(OP, sorry this is OT)

It took me about a year and a half to get into Layers. At first I couldn't find a beneficial way to use them ... but the opacity slider is a very powerful tool. You could raise the contrast a lot, change the opacity to the look you wanted for the low-contrast area, and then erase (or paint black, I think) the rest of the layer using low opacity on the edges so you didn't get a harsh line.