Life Thru the Lens 49/52.... It's Christmas cookie time

Because of our big transition in life, we have moved in with my mother-in-law for a bit. Which, we are super grateful for. However, the light in her house is not especially grand for still life photography. I know I am not the only person who struggles with this issue, so I thought I'd give you a few tips on what I learned through my first photo session since moving. 

I started this shoot in a tiny little corner of the kitchen by the back door, with a light background. It wasn't enough room; I spilled my entire jar of milk trying to hold my diffuser over the shot so that the cake plate would not have so many highlights reflected on it. And, the light was not what I was looking for, especially with the light background. I changed the set up to a dark and moody shot, but still was not pleased with the end result. 

1/60 at f3.2 ISO 400 with a 50mm

Things I like about the shot...

~Front to back composition. 

~The colors and the props.

~The disheveled look.

Things I do not like...

~The lighting, there is no interest in the lighting.

~It's missing something, prop wise.

So, I moved the entire shot to the dinning room table. The problem with the dinning room table is that the light comes in at an angle from the hall window, which is not accessible because the stairs run under it. The light also tends to be harsh, and casts dramatic shadows. If I could defuse the light from the window it would not be an issue, but since I cannot reach it I have to work with what I have. I set up a dark and moody backdrop with part of the light from the window cut off from my subject to emphasis the harsh shadows. 

1/100 at f3.5 (exposure compensation one stop underexposed) ISO 280 with a 50mm

Things I like about the shot...

~ The lighting. I really like how the shadows created interest in the props. 

~ I added more props, including a small cutting board propped up on my background. Which brought depth to the shot and takes your eye all the way through the shot. 

~ I also added a stack of plates and took the mixing bowl out. I think this is a better use of my props, and allows for the focus to be more centered on the cookie cutters, and the cookies on the plate stand. 

Things I do not like...

~ I love the lightening, but I do know that it is a little harsh, and could cause some clipping if it were to be printed. 

So, I rearranged my tripod, and camera, for a top down shot. 

1/200 at F4.0 (exposure compensation one stop underexposed) ISO 1100 with a 50mm

What I love about the shot... everything!  Photography is all about working with what you have... equipment, light, props, workspace, knowledge. Use what you have, (plus) build on what you know, (equals) growth in your abilities. 

 I'll be visiting these lovely communities this week... join along... Trough My Lens Monday, Image-in-ing,  Our World TuesdaySweet Shot Tuesday,  Wednesday Around the World, Little Things Thursday, and Friday Photo Journal

Life Thru the Lens

1. Share your life through the lens past, or present.

2. Grab my button and link back to this page, so others can find our community.

3.  Visit at least one person and create a community with them through encouraging comments.


~All forms of photography accepted… keep it family friendly please.

~Anyone with any photography skill can participate… we are all learning and growing.

~Any camera you take pictures with is acceptable… the best camera is the one in your hand.