Working with black backgrounds, we managed to give a visual aspect to the photograph and to focus our attention more on the portrayed object as well as to achieve different volumes than those we achieved with the white background. These black backgrounds are highly recommended for nude, detail or portrait photography as seen here.
Today we offer you a tip for taking outdoor photographs with a black background only and virtually.
If we have a photo with a background that we do not want to appear, we want to make a portrait, or we need a black background, and we do not have a studio, we can do it only with our camera, flash and an umbrella.
To do this, in addition to controlling the speed, shutter and aperture, we must look at other parameters. We will bear in mind that as we move the object away from the light source, it falls faster, losing its intensity in a few meters; Very merely, this fundamentally is the inverse square law.
First, a few tips:
We need two flashes that we can sync and our camera.
For the photo outdoors on a bright day, try an f16, Iso 200 and speed 1/200 or 250. It is what has worked best for us since with less time we would get more light, and it is not what we are looking for.
- Use a distant background in our photo so that the flash does not reach.
- This background mustn’t be evident, nor bright, since it will be more complicated for us.
- Finally, the more light outside (bright day), the more flashes we will need.
This is the process to follow:
The first and most crucial step is to find our proper F-number. Think that we need to close the shutter as much as we can and give it an average speed of 1/200 1/250 together with the flashes. If we use the trigger, we will not be able to go more than 1/250, since we would have little light.
Try an F16 on a sunny and bright day with speed 1/200 Iso 100.
Place and use the necessary flashes to exclude the image, and two will be enough, although the more we contribute, the easier it will be to blacken the image.
Finally, we will retouch the image with Photoshop. If we have had enough power in our flashes to be able to cancel the environment altogether, we will not need almost any processing.
If there are areas that have been darkened, all we have to do is paint the image using a black brush.
To identify these areas, we will use the curves as a reference, expanding the shadows to separate them, once excluded, we will eliminate the said adjustment layer.