DLWS Kauai – Surf’s Up!

Our assignment for 3rd day morning was to take portraits of each other with and without flash.  Now this is more in my alley.  Our group decided to pool together our Nikon speed lights; this way, we would be able to overpower the ambient light and cycle really fast if we needed to.

We had a total of 5 Nikon flashes; but we ended up using only 3.  We were able to under expose the ambient with FP (high speed) sync via CLS.  Nikon speed lights totally rock!  Yes, you would be smiling if you had them.

The key to flash portrait during bright day light is to place the subject under the shade; then under-expose the ambient by cranking up the shutter speed.  I bet most people couldn’t tell the ambient was very bright already; we started our shoot around 7AM.  By positioning the light low and changing the white balance; you can get the illusion that the sun was rising.

Our guest model that morning was the wonderful Pualani from day 2 morning shoot.

RC wanted to demonstrate how to overpower bright ambient light with Nikon CLS.  But since the ambient was really bright and he will be shooting from a distance, he decided to use his new toy – Pocket Wizard FlexTT5 for Nikon.  Unlike CLS which uses light to communicate with the flashes, these triggers use radio waves.  Therefore, bright sun light and distance are no  problem at all.

There was a breaker a few yards out on the beach, so we decided to have Pualani stand on it for maximum drama.  Here is Pualani and Moose discussing the shot plan.

Moose was holding a painter’s pole retrofitted to hold a speed light.  In order to overpower the sun, the speed light has to be as close a possible to the subject.  That’s because the effect of distance on exposure is inversely squared.  Here is moose breaking the wave.

Pualani venturing out to the breaker.

We were all invited to go for a dip and grab some shots after RC and Moose got there fix.  Here is papa RC taking care of the flock.  Aw…

Did I get turn to shoot you ask?  Uhmm.. no.   I wasn’t prepared to get my borrowed lens wet.  Well, OK… I am lame; I didn’t want that shot bad enough to get wet.  But I am pretty happy with ambient light sometimes.

That’s a wrap!

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2 Responses to “DLWS Kauai – Surf’s Up!”

  1. […] informal sessions on portraiture and external flash photography. This photo to the left taken by Sheng Huang shows me using off camera flash to capture a portrait of fellow workshop attendee Isamu, with […]

  2. […] photo was taken by Sheng Huang shows me using off camera flash to capture a portrait of fellow workshop attendee Isamu Maruhashi, […]

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