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Thread: How to get the "catch-light" in eyes for portraits?

  1. #21

    Default Re: How to get the "catch-light" in eyes for portraits?

    wow those are some really beautiful examples!

    have a slight problem though, cos i want to try taking portraits with my mom's yashica TLR, which hasn't been used for a long time by her and it's the first time being used by me.

    it doesn't have a flash unit, so i was thinking would it be feasible to use a constant light source?(what with the bad weather nowadays, would be hard to get any window light... or say if i want to do a portrait shot indoors) rather than a flash unit that goes off in sync with the shutter. that's the only way i can think of doing it right now, but i'm pretty sure it would be quite inconsiderate towards the subject.

    additional, would the size of the subject's iris affect how the catchlights turn out? not really right? for example, if the flash goes off with the shutter, the iris won't have time to contract, whereas a the iris would have time to contract in the event i use a constant light souce
    Last edited by agentmonkey; 30th August 2007 at 07:31 PM.

  2. #22
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    Default Re: How to get the "catch-light" in eyes for portraits?

    You really don't need too much light for catchlights, just a concentrated spot. The contrast between a relatively dark room vs an open window (even if it's a gloomy day) will produce reasonable catchlight.

    Iris, not really that big of a deal since catchlights are only reflections on the SURFACE layer of our pupils/eyeball. Shouldn't matter whether the iris are wide open or narrowed down.

    This was taken late in the afternoon, indoor awning/roofed area with an open garden at the side and back. The glass cabinet behind me was able to reflect enough light towards the subject's eye.



    As you can see, the "catchlight" extends towards the whole eyeball, not just the iris area.

    Another example of not having a bright "window" or lightsource... This was taken indoors, at night, in a room with a single overhead florescent light. The "reflections" you see are just reflections of a white cabinet in front of my son.



    Of course, it'll be a lot more difficult to get catchlights if the subject's eyes are small, squinted (like if they're laughing or under a bright sun)



    Kids mostly have nice, rounded, glassy eyes... Easier to capture than adults, unless wearing mascara or looking up.


    Hope that helps...
    Last edited by theveed; 1st September 2007 at 10:07 PM.

  3. #23

    Default Re: How to get the "catch-light" in eyes for portraits?

    thanks bro, you've been very helpful. wish me all the best!

  4. #24
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    Default Re: How to get the "catch-light" in eyes for portraits?

    All the best then, bud

  5. #25
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    Default Re: How to get the "catch-light" in eyes for portraits?

    You could also use a ring flash. Here's one in a changable lizard...


  6. #26

    Default Re: How to get the "catch-light" in eyes for portraits?

    hmm..wanted to borrow one from my bro's friend...but he sold it off

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