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best time for outdoor senior pics?

Matt Behm , Sep 02, 2009; 11:35 p.m.

I am taking senior pictures and am wondering when is the best time of the day to take them outside without all the shadows and such? Thanks

Responses

Mark Anthony Kathurima , Sep 03, 2009; 07:18 a.m.

On an overcast day, you would get the most even lighting. In absence of that, on a bright sunny day, take them to a place with open shade. Try and shoot at a time when the sun isn't directly overhead, so maybe you can use the shadown side f a large building. But then again, depending on your style, you could still shoot in bright sun and overpower/complement it with a variety of techniques - check out http://www.strobist.com for a few pointers.

John Deerfield , Sep 03, 2009; 09:32 a.m.

Just before sunrise/sunset will be some of your best light. But even your best light changes with weather conditions. The first thing I would recommend is scouting/knowing your location(s): where will the shade be, what will the daylight hit, where do I want to be and when, and so on. Strobist will give you some pointers, with the best pointer of all being to get the flash off camera. But then you want to know what direction you want your light to be. If at all possible, an assistant can be invaluable, especially on bright days. Nothing like a tri-grip diffuser between your subject and the sun- viola' - instant shade!

Nathan Meador , Sep 03, 2009; 05:45 p.m.

Do you have a hotshoe flash you can use for bounce/fill?  Or some sort of reflector? That can make a huge difference as well.  I'd agree with the above, and recommend either eary morning before 10am, or late afternoon around sunset up until it gets totally dark.

Lindsay Adler , Sep 07, 2009; 11:27 p.m.

I agree with the open shade comment. Really, I photograph senior portraits ALL DAY LONG every day outdoors...
Bright sun: I use a diffuser to give a bright, soft box effect and get rid of harsh light. OR I move them into the shade and maybe reflect in a little bit of light (silver reflector)
Overcast: You can shoot anywhere, as long as you try to use a reflector to make the light a little more crisp/bright. Basically avoid a situation where the light is coming from overhead (gives shadows under the eyes).

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