Lighting Learnings: Light from the side

For as long as I’ve been taking these pictures, I’ve spent precious little time thinking about my lighting setup. I can tell when pictures are good and when they’re not so good, but I don’t mostly review them to figure out *why* they’re not so good.

So, the reminder to light from the side was a useful one for me, and something that I’m now actively doing.

From the episode that I’m working on, you can see the differences in front light, as in this picture:

and my redo, here:

She’s still way overlit – I should have had the light much further back – but the side light just seems much less flat.

One requirement that this sidelighting seems to suggest is that I can’t place the dolls in a space with fixed walls/ceiling. For my 1/6 dolls, I was already doing this – I have a sidewall that I can pick up and move, depending on how I’m shooting the scene. It’s a little hard for my 1/4 size dolls who are often in an enclosed space. But, I guess I’ll figure out how to get lighting to them through the windows of their space.

I’m using regular lighting for these shots – a work lamp clamped onto the side of the table. I have a fancier setup, but it always seems like too much of a hassle to drag it out.

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