Diffused light is not harsh or direct; it’s making its way through something, maybe a frosted window or a cloud in the sky, and it’s soft and subtle. Many photographers see a cloudy day or a “light-less” house and feel uninspired, but diffused light makes for some incredibly beautiful photographs. The light is spread evenly on your subjects skin, creating a soft and calming mood in your image. In most instances, the light won’t be changing, allowing you to focus more on the image itself rather than maintaining proper exposure. Still life photography, for example, is most often best photographed in a more even, or diffused, light. The details are evenly-lit rather than being hidden by shadows and bright, harsh light.
An obvious source of diffused light would be a cloudy day. We all get those from time to time, so this month, instead of letting that cloudy day get you down, use it to get inspired and create something beautiful any way. Go out on that overcast day and use the clouds as a part of your story.
What if it’s not cloudy? Well, good thing clouds aren’t the only way to diffuse light. Windows (especially frosted windows – oh boy do those create magical light!), sheer fabric, trees, fog, clothing drying on a line, umbrellas, all these things and many more create diffused light. The possibilities are endless really.
As always, I am genuinely excited to see what you all bring to the table this month. You never let me down as we embark upon these new challenges each month. Your creativity and positivity throughout the year just shine. I don’t know how I managed to round up so many wonderful people, but I’m so glad I did. I am thoroughly enjoying this years project – it is one of the most satisfying things I have done as a photographer actually. So, thank you.
If you are not yet part of our group on facebook, please join us and be sure to read the about section for more information on the group.
Please also remember that I am not a stickler when it comes to rules. I have very few rules actually. I only ask that you produce some new images this month, based on the theme, and use those for your submissions for possible feature on my blog. If you have a vision for this theme or any future theme, please go with it and don’t be scared or worried that it doesn’t “fit” the theme. My ideas and your ideas are going to be different and that is perfectly ok. That’s what sets us apart and makes our work unique.
Even on a cloudy day, you can find contrast and drama. Taken under a lean-to, where it was quite dark, causing the sky and background to appear brighter in the photo than they really are. His face is not harshly lit – a perfect place for a portrait.
Taken on an overcast day, the details in the sky and clouds add to the story of this photo. Perhaps he’d like to go out on the boat, but the weather doesn’t permit? So, pretending it is.
The photos above were taken in a space with a frosted window. The direct morning light was shining through, being diffused by the window, creating a glow on everything it touched.
The morning sun rising behind her, through the fog, creates a special kind of glow both around her and behind her on this cold, Fall day.
The thick fog creates a simplistic background in this image of seagulls flying over the cold lake.
The trees and morning fog diffuse the sunlight as it rises. Knowing your environment and when to look for the best light and conditions for taking landscape photos is so important. Here in North Idaho, you’ll find it is foggy most mornings as the seasons change from Summer to Fall. Knowing this, you can plan for shots with fog and light like this, adding so much more interest to your landscape images.