It’s time for another installment of our photography for beginners series. I’ve mentioned before how much I love natural light photography – you can take such beautiful photos using natural light. Today, Erin from Erin Rachel Photography and Sixth Bloom is sharing some tips for taking photos inside your home using natural light (which can be so tricky!) I will have another post soon about lighting in general, but I’m excited to share this post. Erin takes some amazing photos.
1. Look for Natural Light
I know it sounds simple but you have to first know how to find natural light within your home. Sources for natural light peeking into your home would be windows, opening a front/back/side door or even if you have skylights those can let some amazing light in!
2. Shoot at the right time of the day
Now that you’ve found the sources for natural light you want to observe to watch when lighting is the best during the day at these spots. For example below. I am using a window on the east side of my home. Where in the morning the sun is shining directly in, evenings the sun is setting on the other side of my home. I have chosen a simple subject for you to see the basics.
Picture A- Morning light On the left side my camera is shooting towards the light. So my camera is facing the window/light. Do you see the shadows and dark areas?
On the right of the image my camera is shooting away from the window, meaning the light is behind my back. Do you see how much better the subject is lit? The lighting is even and there are a lot less shadows.
Dusk Light where now the sun is setting on the opposite side of my home and I have no “direct” light. I still have light coming in just not from the right direction! On the left side of the image my camera is shooting towards the light. So my camera is facing the window/light. On the right of the image my camera is shooting away from the window, meaning the light is behind my back. You are getting the “same” results as above…except remember there is no direct light coming into this window in the evening for me.
So I chose my natural light source (tip #1), then I had to choose which is the best time of day to shoot this image (tip #2), which turned out to be???? Guess…. what is it??? YES Morning light/time.
Out of these two examples my BEST time of day for shooting at this window is in the morning light!! Can you tell the difference?
3. Right Lighting for a Person
If you are using a larger subject vs. an orange in the example above, consider opening a door and having your subject i.e. child face the light and your back towards the light. Just as the orange above, the lighting falls on their face much more evenly and beautiful. If you are in your living area and want to capture your subject playing or in everyday life manipulate them to turn towards the light and again your back is to the light source.
4. Use Dramatic Lighting
Don’t be afraid to play around with a bit more dramatic lighting that will seep into your home. For instance in the example below, using the bright hot spots to create a more dramatic feel to your image. Have fun with lighting, don’t stress about it, sometimes when you play around with using the different lighting scenarios you find something you love and not to mention you learn a whole lot too!
I’m owner of Erin Rachel Photography and Sixth Bloom. I love to teach others photography and mentor them in their business. Seeing a fellow colleague grow and develop their business into what they want is so rewarding to me. I consider myself a newlywed even though we’ve been married a little over one year…I’m a first time mom-to-be coming this summer…and the mister and I are building a house…call me crazy if you will, but I’m loving it!!
Katie is a Colorado-native, BYU graduated, and most importantly, wife to one and mother to three beautiful boys. She is passionate about sharing her experiences with others – especially about pregnancy, breastfeeding, cooking, and crafts. She is an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant. She loves spending time with her family and helping others find joy in family life.