Five Types of Lighting Used in Photography

By February 25, 2019 March 5th, 2019 cameras, Creativity, General, Suggestions, Techniques

Lighting is the key point in your photography. If you are an expert at handling your gears, but have very little knowledge about the lighting conditions, then your expertise is of no use. It’s as good as nothing. In order to capture a good piece of photograph, you need to be a good judge of the lighting environment and how different lighting angles work. Come.. let’s explore 5 types of lighting used in photography.

Five Types of Lighting Used in Photography

Short Lighting

Short Lighting is the type of side lighting, where the side of the subject turned towards the camera is in shadow and the other side faces the light. This type of light settings are generally used for darker portraits and helps to make the face look thinner which is flattering for many people.

Broad Lighting

Broad Lighting is the opposite of Short Lighting. In this type of lighting, the side of the subject facing the camera and closest to it is most lit. The other side of the face which is further away falls on the darker side and shadows fall on that side. Such lighting helps the face look fuller and compliments someone with a narrow face.

Split Lighting

As the name suggests, Split Lighting splits the subject’s face into exact halves – one half is completely lit by light and the other half lies in the shadow which gives a tougher and bolder look to your subject. To achieve this, you need to keep the light at 90 degrees to the left or right side of the subject. This will give you a dramatic effect.

Butterfly Lighting

With light directly placed above and in front of the subject, the shadow created under the nose of the subject resembles a butterfly, which explains its name. This setting beautifully highlights the cheekbones and the chin of the subject and is most commonly used for women. It is mostly used for glamour style shots.

Loop Lighting

Loop Lighting is used to make your subject’s face well lit. In this case, the light is kept at about 45 degrees angle and slightly above the eye level. This way, the shadow is created exactly under one nostril and to the side of the nose.

And that’s not just it! These are only few of the light settings that are generally used. Apart from these, there are still so many lighting patterns to know of and experiment with. To get a better hold at light settings, try experimenting with different angles of light and may be use different tools like, reflectors etc. to give better look to your subject.

Happy Clicking! 🙂

~ Sulekha Sonal

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