View Full Version : Lighting a figure to create a totally different shadow - help

01-17-2008, 04:26 PM

My idea is to take a picture of a figure (person, toy figurine, etc.), with frontal lighting, but with it's shadow being totally different from what would be expected. It would kinda be like the starwars episode 1 poster (http://www.geocities.com/MIGHTORS5/Richard/anakin4.jpg).

The catch is. I CAN'T edit the photo at all so everything must be done in camera.

Do you guys know if there is any way I can do this? I need the pictures ASAP


01-17-2008, 04:52 PM
oh yeah, and i'm just saying i don't want to hear replies about editing it afterwards because I want to know if there actually is a way to do it without having to edit it. thanks

01-17-2008, 05:11 PM
What gear do you have (flashes, other lighting equipment etc.) to try and accomplish this? This effect is extremely easy to achieve in natural light (just shoot with the subject's back to the sun and expose for the sky), but without knowing what you have, it's hard to say what to do.

01-17-2008, 05:42 PM
Make a cardboard silhouette to a small scale. Use two flashes.

One flash projects the shilhouette on a wall. The other illuminates your subject.

That should work - haven't tried it though.

01-17-2008, 10:15 PM
i don't really have any flashes other than a bunch of desk lamps I can use

yeah i'vebeen looking around and everyone is suggesting using 2 flashes

My question is how would i position the lights so i only get that one shadow?

the 'desired' effect would be to have the 'figure' inthe foreground of the frame, and with the shadow trailing behind it along the floor first, and then up against the wall (a small cardboard wall i'm going to make) with a totally different shape.

that would be ideal, i know there can be other variations though

thanks for the tips!

01-17-2008, 10:45 PM
When you're using desk lamps as lighting... I don't really know where to begin with telling you that hoping to get studio lighting that multi thousand dollar strobes produce with $10 desk lamps is... unrealistic, to understate the matter.

And if you're not using flash, and you're using a constant light source (desk lamps), then you can simply OPEN YOUR EYES AND LOOK. What you see is what you'll get, because the light won't flash, it's already there.