Photo Life is proud to partner with Seneca students to document their journey through the school curriculum. This week Kayla Hill shares about learning about lighting.
Class: Photography II
Assignment: Complimentary Objects and Props
Student: Kayla Hill
Professor: Tom Szuba
Assignment Guidelines: Use different lighting positions to photograph fruit and/or vegetables.
Background: This class is in the second semester of the 4-semester Independent Digital Photography Program at Seneca, and it is the first time that we get to work in the studio and use lighting equipment. The purpose of this assignment was to experiment with different lighting positions to better understand how you can use lighting to create a specific look or feeling in a photograph. We were supposed to choose produce with different colours and textures to understand how these different surfaces react to lighting. We also got to use different types of light modifiers such as soft boxes, snoots and grids.
Process: The first part to this assignment was to sketch out 5 different possible lighting and composition setups so that we could identify and solve any potential issues before we started setting up. Next, we chose 3 sketches and used them as a reference for our setup.
Conclusion: I loved this assignment, mostly because it was really exciting to try out all of the different lighting equipment! I brought in some different coloured fruit, as well as a placemat, cutting board and knife so we could make the photos a little bit more interesting and diverse. It was great to see how a really small change in the position of the light could have a drastic affect on how the texture of the fruit appeared in the photo.
One of the best parts about this class is that since we are taking photos of objects that don’t move, we can really stop and think about each photo and take the time to fix any problems we might have along the way. Something that our teacher says all the time is to look at the photo and if the lighting isn’t exactly how you want it, change it. As a photographer, don’t accept what you see if it isn’t what you want. When I was photographing the fruit on the plate, I realized that the position of the light was not going to work how I had originally planned because it was being reflected in an awkward spot on the plate. So I changed the position of the strobe until the reflection was a bit smaller and in a better place. I feel like I learned a lot during this class, and I had a lot of fun at the same time!
The Seneca @ York Independent Digital Photography Program is a two-year diploma course that prepares students for a freelance career and provides them with the necessary skill set to work in a multidisciplinary studio.