Praying – for a good photo

I shot this photo in a church down in Eugene a couple of weeks ago. I think it turned out pretty good. It was not without some challenges though…

Robin Loznak was my assistant this day and when we walked into the chapel, we didn’t have a whole lot for background options. The cross seemed like our best option and Robin had the great idea to spotlight it somehow. The room, as you can see below, had a lot of windows, but the quality of the light was not very good, so I decided to cut out all the ambient light by setting my camera at 50ISO, 1/200th, f4. Now I had complete control. Next, I put a speedlight with a grid just out of the frame on the right to spotlight the cross. Next, I placed a scrim next to our subject and fired a second speedlight through it. Finally, I just had to change the ratios around a little on each light to get the exposures right and then fire away using a 200mm lens to compress the two together. Here is a wide shot of the room I shot the day before, as you can see the cross and subject were pretty far apart, using a long lens helps bring them closer. Let me know what you think!

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5 Responses to “Praying – for a good photo”

  1. Yasmin Khajavi Says:

    Craig, I love it! Awesome job! It’s a killer picture!!

  2. Guno W. Panka Says:

    Dear Craig,
    I like the way you manipulate light.
    This my first visit to your site. I’m quite impressed. As I said I really like the way you arrange the light.

  3. Shaun Ward Says:

    Hi Craig
    Nice image.
    What was your reason for creating distance between the different components and compressing it rather than shooting close with a wider lens. Did you try both?


  4. Michael Says:

    It’s a little late for my comment, but better late than never. Very nicely lit. It really draws the viewer in for a 2nd look.

  5. Jason V Says:

    I love the result. I’ve had an idea for a similar picture, but never could figure out the correct way to get the result I wanted. I had locked in my mind to use only ‘natural’ light from the window, but couldn’t get the background dark. I love your solution. ;)

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