Why lighting is so important in photography?

lighting in photography
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As any Bournemouth Wedding Photographer knows lighting is incredibly important when it comes to taking photographs.  Without light the photograph will appear dull and may not even develop properly. Light can be used o achieve all sorts of effects and crate shadows to further enhance the image that you are taking. Light can also set the mood, tone and overall atmosphere of a photography with the possibilities almost being endless. Light is manipulated in order to achieve the desired results, this could be by simply moving so that the natural sunlight is the right position but could also be the use of spotlights and coloured filters.

lighting in photography

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Natural light that is used most often in photographs that are taken outside of a studio environment occurs in four distinct types:

Softlight – Softlight is used to show the subtle tints of colour that are mostly lost in direct full sunlight.

Frontlight – this usually requires have the sunlight at your back whilst you are taking the photograph and will produce natural shadow behind the subject of your image which helps to produce a vivid contrast in the colours present.

Sidelight – this is when the sun is positioned to either your left-hand or right-hand side and is used to show up textures in a photograph. The contrast is created between the two sides of the subject, the one with the light shining on and the other in the shadow. This is a type of lighting that is often used in black and white photographs as it creates a beautiful natural contrast.

Backlight – this is where the natural light source comes from behind the subject of the images this can create some beautiful contrasts and also silhouettes. This is most often used when photographing nature and in particular when a tree is the subject or involved in the composition of your photograph.

lighting in photography

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As light is so important it is always a good idea when photographing in natural light to have a few composition options in your mind and be willing to move around to catch the light at the best angle. This is why professional photographs always appear sharper than those we take ourselves as the photographer is always thinking about and playing with the light source that is available. So next time you are taking some images of your holidays have a think about what angle the sun is and what effects you can create by simply changing this angle.

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