Strobist Boot Camp 3

Definitely the toughest of the assignments so far. First and most obviously, lighting a room is *much* harder than it looks. But beyond that, I had a very hard time finding a room that was worth photographing at all. Frankly, I had never even given any thought to taking a picture of a room whatsoever.

I tried my kitchen (see here) but was not at all satisfied with the result. I quickly grew dejected, feeling I had hit a wall in my learning process.

But that was getting me nowhere so I decided change my attitude and look at it as a learning experience. And what better way to learn than to steal from my host (nice) and ape this image but using my own, similar, bathroom. The full Strobist article is here.

On my image, the verticals and horizontals are off and the highlights are blown in the sink fixture. Oh well, I still learned a lot and that’s what matters.

Strobist – couldn’t be much simpler. The room is only 3 feet (roughly 1 meter) by 6 feet (2 meters). The toilet is right behind where I was standing so I just put my (sole) strobe (an SB-800) on its little plastic stand on the toilet seat and triggered it via the Nikon wireless system. To match the color temperature of the room lighting, I put a CTO (Color Temperature Orange) gel on the flash, which was pointed at the ceiling (and the back wall, hence the blown out mirror). It was fired at 1/8 power.

To avoid being reflected in the mirror (vampire mode) I just squatted down a bit and pointed the camera at a point just under the mirror and then cropped away the bottom of the picture in Photoshop. Keeping the camera level was hard. In retrospect, I should have used a tripod. The full Strobist article explaining this technique is here.

Nikon D70 camera with kit lens (Nikon Nikkor 18-70mm f/3.5-4.5) at 18mm (the widest angle). Manual mode: f/3.5 at 1/250th of a second. ISO 200. White Balance Automatic.

<Addition> This entry made the short list of finalists in the contest. As a result, it was instantly launched into prominence and even made #13 on the “Explored” list on Flickr. This is apparently a pretty big deal. Not bad for my third attempt, I’d say.