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Sketching Light: An Illustrated Tour of the Possibilities of Flash by Joe McNally

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Sometimes, the Main Light Is in the Back

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THIS SHOT IS BASICALLY TWO LIGHTS. One big, one small. There are other lights, real minor, kicker-type lights, and I mention them toward the end of the story, but really, this is a two-light photo. Now, conventional wisdom often dictates that the main light is the big light, and that’s for the subject, or star, of the photo. The smaller light is the fill, or perhaps it’s for the background.

Nothing wrong with conventional wisdom. It often works, and works well. Big light up front, little light here or there. But when you’re dealing with yards and yards of cubic space, and your subject is just a piece of ...

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