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Thread: Family Portrait (20+ people) - Natural lighting

  1. #1

    Default Family Portrait (20+ people) - Natural lighting

    Any suggestions or tips?? Am going to help my uncle take a family portrait at East coast. Timing is about 4+, so yeah precious lighting and limited time there. I think the challenging part of taking such family portrait is more of how to arrange them? Any people here experienced or can share a few tips with me.

    Thanks!
    One day you'll see.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Family Portrait (20+ people) - Natural lighting

    Try to get a reflector and tripod. Place the cam on the tripod on timer mode, click off the timer, and use the reflector (from underneath). A big cardboard covered with aluminum foil will do, if you don't want to buy the 5-in-1 reflectors.
    Our pictures are our footprints. Itís the best way to tell people we were here - JoeMcnally | Flickr

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    Default Re: Family Portrait (20+ people) - Natural lighting

    Quote Originally Posted by Headshotzx View Post
    Try to get a reflector and tripod. Place the cam on the tripod on timer mode, click off the timer, and use the reflector (from underneath). A big cardboard covered with aluminum foil will do, if you don't want to buy the 5-in-1 reflectors.
    For 20+ people, that would have to be a pretty big reflector.

    Anyway, if you rely on natural light, it is per definition natural lighting. It may help if the sky is overcast and the light is diffuse so that you don't get harsh shadows in the faces.

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    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: Family Portrait (20+ people) - Natural lighting

    for one subject, we need a reflector about 4 ft,
    so for twenty people, what is the size you need to use?

    anyway, even have such big reflector around, there is no way to place it and no showing in the photo.


    btw, TS never really say when, I guess probably the photos has already taken today.
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    Default Re: Family Portrait (20+ people) - Natural lighting

    Quote Originally Posted by catchlights View Post
    for one subject, we need a reflector about 4 ft,
    so for twenty people, what is the size you need to use?
    Ever heard of a white walled building?
    Our pictures are our footprints. Itís the best way to tell people we were here - JoeMcnally | Flickr

  6. #6

    Default Re: Family Portrait (20+ people) - Natural lighting

    Quote Originally Posted by hidden3 View Post
    Any suggestions or tips?? Am going to help my uncle take a family portrait at East coast. Timing is about 4+, so yeah precious lighting and limited time there. I think the challenging part of taking such family portrait is more of how to arrange them? Any people here experienced or can share a few tips with me.

    Thanks!
    580ex master plus few other chapalang slaves would do the job.

    rent if you cant borrow (if your getting paid or got some angpao)

    if not just bring a few friends and a few rolls of alu foil and get creative

  7. #7
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: Family Portrait (20+ people) - Natural lighting

    Quote Originally Posted by Headshotzx View Post
    Ever heard of a white walled building?
    sure, build a white wall, and move the sun around, and line up the people for shoot.
    Shoot to Live, Live to Shoot
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  8. #8
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: Family Portrait (20+ people) - Natural lighting

    anyway, which is easier and practical?

    DIY many reflectors, and secure it properly to prevent it blown away by wind?

    bring 20 persons go around east coast to search for buildings with white wall to be use as reflector?

    mount a hotshoe flash to shoot with fill flash?
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    Default Re: Family Portrait (20+ people) - Natural lighting

    Quote Originally Posted by catchlights View Post
    sure, build a white wall, and move the sun around, and line up the people for shoot.
    Heh, i was referring to moving the people around when there's a white wall nearby Not sure if the East Coast has changed so far, but a few years ago the buildings overlooking the beach (with macdonalds) was painted white.
    Our pictures are our footprints. Itís the best way to tell people we were here - JoeMcnally | Flickr

  10. #10
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: Family Portrait (20+ people) - Natural lighting

    Quote Originally Posted by Headshotzx View Post
    Heh, i was referring to moving the people around when there's a white wall nearby Not sure if the East Coast has changed so far, but a few years ago the buildings overlooking the beach (with macdonalds) was painted white.
    I know your idea, it is easy to shoot with one or two persons if you are using this method.

    but for a bigger group, posing arrangement is already a big problem, should only consider the most simple and faster method to get the group photo done.
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  11. #11

    Default Re: Family Portrait (20+ people) - Natural lighting

    Well I'm not sure what bugget you are talking about here. But I suggest the following
    I'm on Nikon system, but you can go and get something similar in Canon or other system

    1 x SB900 on your camera, set to commander mode.
    2 x SB600/SB800/SB900 set to remote.

    Configure your SB900 to have even distribution.
    Place both the other flash facing approx 45 degree inwards but on the left target at left group, right targetting at right group.

    That should give a good lighting. I'm just concern that reflector is not going to give you a good distribution of light. Furthermore if your background is bright, you might find your family faces pretty dark or if you overexpose, your background is blown out.

    If you cannot borrow 2 tripods and 2 flash, I suggest you rent them
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  12. #12
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    Default Re: Family Portrait (20+ people) - Natural lighting

    IMHO, I think its a casual shot. Any PnS would do. If TS is using a DLSR, then it would be already a plus. The people in the pictures and the uncle does not have professional requirements. If so complicated, rent flash, reflector, etc, might as well call in a MUA , use light meter.

    Let's not think too complicated. Just take lor... Snap Snap...
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  13. #13

    Default Re: Family Portrait (20+ people) - Natural lighting

    Well IMHO, since it's that simple, just buy a few bucks disposable camera off the retail shop and start snapping. For all you know, the picture might looks even nicer versus a DSLR.

    I suppose the whole point here is someone wanted options to give the best, so I suppose we are giving we options. It's really up to his opinion to choose which is best and within his limit.

    In fact, not a long while ago, I have even heard comments like sometimes a DSLR can give you worse picture than a PnS. DSLR offer so much flexibility and more chances to go wrong than a simple PnS. Isn't it ?
    D3S|N70-200|N24-70|N24-85|N50f1.4|N35f2|SB800|SB900|Yashica GS|S95
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  14. #14

    Default Re: Family Portrait (20+ people) - Natural lighting

    Pictures taken, and i'm glad it turn out nice. 19 people in total, no reflectors used. Shot at about 5. Sun was covered by clouds, so diffused lights. They like the pictures, so i guess i succeed?
    One day you'll see.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Family Portrait (20+ people) - Natural lighting

    CONGRATS!

  16. #16
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: Family Portrait (20+ people) - Natural lighting

    Quote Originally Posted by hidden3 View Post
    Pictures taken, and i'm glad it turn out nice. 19 people in total, no reflectors used. Shot at about 5. Sun was covered by clouds, so diffused lights. They like the pictures, so i guess i succeed?
    yes, just keep it simple, everyone happy.
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    Default Re: Family Portrait (20+ people) - Natural lighting

    Congrats.. you are now officially the free family photographer. All your aunties and uncles will ask you to shoot their birthday/full month/wedding/IC photo for free from now on.

  18. #18

    Default Re: Family Portrait (20+ people) - Natural lighting

    Quote Originally Posted by m3lv1nh0 View Post
    Congrats.. you are now officially the free family photographer. All your aunties and uncles will ask you to shoot their birthday/full month/wedding/IC photo for free from now on.
    Er.. Ha Ha and Ha?
    One day you'll see.

  19. #19

    Default Re: Family Portrait (20+ people) - Natural lighting

    Quote Originally Posted by m3lv1nh0 View Post
    Congrats.. you are now officially the free family photographer. All your aunties and uncles will ask you to shoot their birthday/full month/wedding/IC photo for free from now on.
    I feel u....lol

  20. #20

    Default Re: Family Portrait (20+ people) - Natural lighting

    Quote Originally Posted by m3lv1nh0 View Post
    Congrats.. you are now officially the free family photographer. All your aunties and uncles will ask you to shoot their birthday/full month/wedding/IC photo for free from now on.
    At least he might have 'PRIORITY' for all the koffkoff female relatives when those aunties do their 'match-making' thingie!

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