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About Everything Wiki » Photography » How to create emotions in a photo using lighting

How to create emotions in a photo using lighting

28 Jan 2024, 12:06, parser
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J. P. Morgan
He has been working as a commercial photographer and film director in Los Angeles for over 20 years. On the YouTube channel The Slanted Lens talks about photography and videography.

Each photographer tries to get the model to show a variety of emotions: from joy to fright and horror. If the model fails, then lighting comes to the rescue. Interestingly, this trend can be traced not only in the field of photography. The concept of light is used in speech to convey the state and qualities of a person, for example: "glow with happiness", "dark horse".

J.P. Morgan has revealed that light can create a model's emotions in four different ways.

1. The ratio of illumination, or contrast

Contrast is the ratio of the amount of light that falls on the illuminated side and on the shadow side of the face. Changing the exposure allows you to change the expression of your face.

  • The ratio is 1:1. Uniform lighting of the face.
  • The ratio is 2:1. Increase the exposure by one notch (the light from one side of the face is twice as bright).
  • The ratio is 4:1. An increase in exposure by two steps (the light on one side of the face is four times brighter).
  • The ratio is 8:1. Increase the exposure by three steps (the light from one side of the face is eight times brighter).

Morgan asked the model to demonstrate three different emotions: happiness, sadness and anger. As you can see from the pictures he took, under the side lighting, which provides a strong contrast, emotions are slightly distorted. Brighter lighting softens the facial features. Therefore, it is better to use higher light ratio coefficients to convey, for example, the depressed state of a person.

The Slanted Lens/
The Slanted Lens/
The Slanted Lens/

2. Light quality

Hard light forms a deep shadow and a sharp boundary between light and shadow. Soft lighting provides a smooth transition from light to shadow, which softens the facial expression of the model.

The Slanted Lens/

3. Lighting color

Color directly affects our mood. For example, for the house, we choose warmer colors that give us a feeling of comfort. The same goes for photography. The color of the lighting affects the viewer's perception of it.

The dark bluish light adds drama to the picture.

The Slanted Lens/
The Slanted Lens/
The Slanted Lens/

4. Light direction

We are used to the light always falling on us from above. If you shift its direction, you will get a different effect on the photo.

The light directed at the model from below will give it a slightly sinister appearance. This is a kind of effect of a horror movie or gatherings with scary stories around a campfire at night.

In this photo, the model shows the same emotion. But you may notice how your perception of the image changes depending on the direction of the light.

The Slanted Lens/

Playing with light will open up a lot of new photo opportunities for you.

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28 Jan 2024, 00:02    0    0
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