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Photography 101, Weekend Two: Play With Light

We’ve practiced shooting outside, getting different kinds of shots, and experimenting with light. This weekend, let’s build on these skills.

Image by Cheri Lucas Rowlands

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It’s weekend two of our photography course!

Feel free to take a breather, or use the time to catch up — these weekend ideas are optional!

For those who want to practice more, first consider these points on the quality of light, and how light varies throughout the day:

  • Dawn — before sunrise — can cast a cool blue light, with no shadows.
  • Later in the morning, the light tends to be neutral — and to some, ideal.
  • At midday, the sun reaches its highest point in the sky, resulting in dark shadows.
  • Later in the day, in the “golden hour” before sunset, daylight grows softer and redder, creating a magical atmosphere.

These are just guidelines, of course. Factors can change these conditions, including weather, location, and the time of year.

Weekend mini-projects:

  • Study light throughout the day. Select one single location or object to which you’ll return to see how the light changes — and how it affects this particular shot. Snap test shots during each session, so you can compare the results.
  • If you don’t want to limit yourself to one location or subject, look for unexpected angles from which to take your images. Take note of how new POVs invite different types of light.

After your shoot, compile up to ten of your favorite shots, and sprinkle them into a post (or create a gallery). Don’t forget to add captions to your images — describing the weather and shooting conditions, for instance — and tag your post, too.

Note: Comments on Photo 101 posts are closed — please use the Commons to share your new posts, discuss today’s theme and tip, and chat with fellow participants. If you choose not to use the Commons, just be sure to tag your post with photo101 so others can find your submission in the Reader. 

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