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Archive 2012 · Tips for using reflectors?
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · Tips for using reflectors?

I usually shoot fill flash and shoot a few hours before sunset. However, I have been seeing more and more simply using reflectors, and am thinking of giving it a try.

I have a big double sided (white on one side and "gold" on the other) about 6' x 3' collapsable reflector, and one a small circular one about 18" - 24" or so around.

I am looking for tips with using these. I will plan to shoot a little later in the day.

How close to the model should the reflectors be? Any other tips would be greatly appreciated as well.

Thank you!

Sep 23, 2012 at 10:20 PM
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · Tips for using reflectors?

I've found using white/silver to be a great combination. I've never really liked adding gold to an image. From my experience, it's easier to warm the image up in post versus trying to pull the gold tones out of it. Darker skin tones can do will with gold so it's a case by case basis IMO. Collapsible reflectors are great, the larger ones can be a bear to handle... not enough support without a "magic arm" or something along those lines to provided extra support. Have you considered purchasing a reflector panel or kit with a frame? Much easier to handle.

Placement... all depends on the lighting condition. Using the white side you can get away with coming in closer to the subject. This is will be dependent upon how much light is being reflected back. Pay close attention to how the light impacting the scene.

You can "feather" the panel to just give a small increase in light. Meaning.. position the panel so that the light just starts to creep in versus a direct blast of light.

Using the silver side allows you to step back further... again... pay attention to the light being pushed back on the subject. Silver can be harsh but it can also provide a ton of light if the model/client can handle it for brief periods of time.

I would also suggest adding a diffusion panel to the mix... using the reflector for fill and having a diffusion panel over the top is a great way to give the image some "pop" ... you get your fill light and you eliminate hotspots on the top of the head or body. It's really handy in dappled shade/light under trees.

For example... just a diffusion panel and the ground is pushing light back on the subject/s

Single reflector... with some details.

Hope some of this makes sense... if you have any questions... feel free to ask. Glad to help. A reflector panel and diffusion panel can be worth their weight in gold... great tools.


Sep 23, 2012 at 10:53 PM

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