I shot a home yesterday for another agent and it was a REALLY BIG home with big windows and lots of daylight outside. I had the obvious problem of trying to capture the inside of the home without having the windows blown out. I was using 3 Nikon SB800 strobes but the house was so big I wasnt getting enuf light from them to balance the exposure.
This is a shot in the living room, which is one of the main shots. I didnt anticipate it being so difficult but I think it had to do with the size of the home. Anyway, I decided to shoot a couple of shots, one exposing the outside and one exposing the inside -- but the one for the inside was still underexposed because I didnt want that really bright wash out glare. Then I worked at combining the two images. I didnt do HDR because I havent studied it enough to be proficient at it I just ramped up the exposure on the one image and put the windows on a seperate layer in Photo Shop and blended the two.
I know most of you will look at it and go WOW! --- but the more experienced photogs are likely to see some major flaws. The picture looks OK for the internet but I dont know if I would want to print it.
My question for this pic is what do you use to light a large home inside to counter the bright light outside? I hate to sink more money into flash equipment but I think the answer might be a 500 watt strobe. OTH - I imaging that a large srtobe might make it bright with dark shadows. For example - look at the subtle shadow on the coffee table to the right. I wouldnt want that shadow really DARK.
I WOULD REALLY LIKE TO NAIL THESE SHOTS WITHOUT HAVING TO DO SO MUCH POST PROCESSING. Please let me know what you would do in this situation.
My next question has to do with the stairwell. It really beautiful, as you can see, but shooting it was a pain. It seemed like no matter how I attemtped to throw light on it I was getting shadows --- shadows all over the place! I mean the pictures looked good - as far as being bright - but I could not use a single one done with flash. So - since I the competing light from the outside was only coming through a couple of small windows I just turned the lights on and did it without the flash. But as you can see I still ended up with plenty of shadows and dark areas.
I am thinking that I may need to get some pocket wizards. Does anybody else here use them. The range for the Nikon CLS system isnt all that far and is a bit tempermental. Dont get me wrong - if they are relatively close - there is no problem at all but I was getting mixed results the farther they got from the master unit.
My question here: What do the experienced among us do for lighting when shooting stairwells?
© Randy "Lazarus" McAtee
Broker / Owne: Lazarus Realty