In the professional photography the quality of the light is often described in flowery terms that leave the beginner or passionate amateur at a loss. Extensively gets over cold and warm light or about hard and soft light spoken. The latter, the soft light, seems to be particularly popular, but what exactly is it, how can it be distinguished from the hard light and how can it be used consciously?
The differences between hard and soft light
The sun is high in the sky, it's warm and bright outside so perfect for taking nice photos or not actually appreciatingn professional photographers not at all when the sun burns down steeply and intensely from the sky. Although it usually brings with it a blue sky and high temperatures, but for photos, especially for portraits , this light is often less suitable as it is the dreaded hard light acts.
The light is said to be hard because it is hard, clear on people or objects to be photographed outlined shadows throws and also the Contrasts significantly enhanced . The reason for this is the Size and the distance of the light source . In the case of the cloudless summer day, the only source of the light is the sun, which is small in the sky and notoriously extremely distant.
soft light is therefore the opposite of hard light. It flatters faces since it Contrasts reduced and colors appear muted.In addition, the Transitions from shadow to light areas softened and significantly softer.Such a light source can be observed naturally in the form of an overcast and overcast sky.
Where is the soft light used?
Soft light is considered ideal for portrait photography . If the person in the recordings is not to appear particularly dominant and the proportions or facial features are too hard, then it is a good idea to include them soft light to work. Furthermore, photographers often use still life to the soft light. Because as already described, the Contrasts reduced and image information can easily be placed in the darker areas of the image, the so-called shadows.
In most cases, the soft light effect will be in the Studio or in indoors used, since a lot outdoors depends on the position of the sun, the season and the weather. Even beginners can achieve great results with the right equipment soft light , which are in no way inferior to the recordings of a professional.
How photographers use the soft light in photography?
In principle, only one is needed for the simplest variant of the soft light single artificial light source . In this case, it is particularly important to ensure that the light falls as wide as possible . The use of is conceivable studio flash in combination withlight stands and big light shapers , Howsoft boxes or transmitted light screens . Are also problem-freeLED steady lights should be used where the effect can be estimated more easily in advance. The primary artificial light is positioned at an angle from above or from the front, light structures are also popular with which two lights be used from the side. It is important that the light literally encloses the object or person to be photographed. This will prevent harsh shadows and help reduce the Luminous intensity soft and gradual decreases. To achieve this, lightning, for example, is often integrated into the subject opposite direction aligned and used in conjunction with an umbrella diffuser.
Tips and tricks for working with soft light
Because it doesn't take much to use soft light, photographers easily use this technique in Studio and on location . The effect of the primary light further strengthen . Your own equipment becomes particularly mobile and light if you only use it a light , but with practical onesreflectors is being worked on, which can be easily folded up. These are usually multi-colored finishes and therefore with different effects fitted. White, silver or gold brightens the shadow side and changes the temperature of the reflected light, while the black time absorbs the light, enhancing the shadows and thus somewhat softening the soft light effect.
The soft light must be part of every photographer's repertoire, it is easy to implement and leads with the simplest means amazing effects , which put each person in the center, especially in portraits.
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