It’s All About the Light

Just “Google” the phrase “It’s All About the Light” and in less than a second you will have millions of references at your fingertips.  One of the first lessons every photographer learns is to develop an awareness of the light.  It – the light – can quickly make or break an image.

Winter typically is the time of year that I spend more time indoors doing my photography.  And, indoor photography brings a new set of challenges to me as a photographer.  However, with those challenges comes the opportunity to explore, play, learn, and grow as a photographer.

© Sue Henry

© Sue Henry

Using Dave Black’s blog articles on Light Painting as inspiration, I have enjoyed utilizing a spare bedroom as a make-shift studio.  I cover the windows with black cardboard, set up a black card table with a black tri-fold cardboard back drop, get out my flashlight, turn off the lights, and create warm, rich images like this.

© Sue Henry

© Sue Henry

On the other hand, natural light is often available inside a house but often one must be creative in finding and utilizing the best natural light source.  Harsh glares and cluttered backgrounds can present challenges for the photographer.

Mike Moats was the inspiration for opening my front door and using my stairway as a natural light make-shift studio.  It’s interesting how strikingly similar my stairway is to his!

© Sue Henry

© Sue Henry

For this backlit technique, inspired by new-to-me photographic artist Harold Davis, I recently borrowed a light box with which to experiment and play a little.  In many respects this technique reminded me of the scanner art that we did in photography class several years ago taught by Alison Hahn Buzek.

© Sue Henry

© Sue Henry

Sometimes we spend a great deal of time trying to avoid shadows.  In this particular image I intentionally used flash to create a shadow, wanting to add depth and dimension.  And, of course, you can see that I added a little ‘texture love,’ one of my favorite artistic techniques.

There are so many wonderful photographers who photograph flowers indoors I would be hard pressed to share a comprehensive list of those who inspire me, but Anita Bower no doubt would top the list as a favorite.  An interview with Anita on Photogeneralist shows her indoor flower photography set up.  While the interview is a little ‘older’ now, the information is still very interesting.

I hope today’s post will inspire you to experiment and play with various sources of light in your indoor setting.  The cold, dreary winter weather does not need to keep us from creating our art.  And remember, “It’s All About the Light!”

Contributed by Sue Henry

3 thoughts on “It’s All About the Light

  1. Bonney Oelschlager

    A great contrast of smooth and textured images. Loved them all.
    The tulip resting on (and under) it’s own leaves is especially appealing to me.


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