Online Learning Platforms for Photography & Lighting Are They Worth Paying For?

Online Learning Platforms for Photography & Lighting Are They Worth Paying For?

Copyright of the above image belongs to Michael Clark. I have posted this image on this blog to make people aware of his class “Michael Clark Location Lighting For The Outdoor Photographer” which is availble on CreativeLive. A linkdirect is available at the bottom of this blog. I receive no payment or benefit in kind in promoting this class, I just thought others may find it informative.

Twenty years ago, if you wanted to learn photography and lighting, there were three main options, read a book, sign up at night school / college, or attend a workshop. The internet has enabled numerous online learning platforms the ability to deliver learning to any digital device where ever you might be and at whatever time you choose, which I think is great.

The online photography training market has boomed in recent years and almost everyone is wanting you to subscribe, receive special bonus material, or take advantage of their once in a lifetime limited offer, the problem is separating the great from the average.  Over the past eight years, I have accessed CreativeLive, Linda (now Linkedin) KelbyOne and a host of other online videos, some have delivered very good learning opportunities and others not so good, which is why I decided to right this blog.

Visit any online learning platform in relation to photography and type in lighting and virtually everything will be either, portrait, wedding or family related, but if you want something specific in relation to lighting, you will probably find that the choices quickly diminish rapidly.  I have been looking to improve my lighting knowledge and skills, especially for location lighting in relation to outdoor pursuits and leisure activities, so when I came across Michael Clark’s “Location Lighting For The Outdoor Photographer” on CreativeLive, my initial thoughts were, that might be worth buying. I decided to look through some of Michael Clark’s work and managed to find a few YouTube clips and as a result decided to pay for the class on CreativeLive.  

 

The full set of classes cost me $10, so that works out at roughly £8,  you can also download each of the classes, which is another reason why I thought, I would take a punt.When you pay for the class you will also find some PDF’s that come with the class. Personally, I think the class is worth $10, just to listen to Michael Clark talk about what equipment he uses and why. The course is not designed for people with no lighting knowledge at all and it won’t make you a lighting Jedi Knight either, but it is certainly one of the more unique classes on CreativeLive, or any online learning platform, but you will have to watch it for yourself.

Like everythingg in life, you pays your moneny and you make your choices, so only you can determine if online learning platforms are worth paying for.

 

Michael Clark Location Lighting For The Outdoor Photographer Link

The Godox AD300 Pro & Why I Think It’s The Ideal Portable Light

The Godox AD300 Pro & Why I Think It’s The Ideal Portable Light

The Godox AD300 Pro & Why I Think It’s The Ideal Portable Flash.

In 2014 I purchased a Godox 180 flash as I was really becoming interested in Off Camera flash and it’s potential. From 2014 onwards, every flash I have purchased has been Godox. I cannot remember when I purchased the AD360ll with TTL, but it opened a new door in relation to using flash and when the AD200 arrived I was hooked, no wires, no battery packs and being able to combine two AD200’s via the AD-B2 head, I could have 400ws of power by paring two AD200’s.

As I have a Paul C Buff Einstein 640, The Godox AD600 or the pro version never really appealed to me, yes, the Einstein cannot do HSS or TTL, but if I ever need 600ws I can make do using a manual flash, but when the Godox AD300 Pro was announced earlier this year, it caught my attention for a few reasons. Firstly, it’s size in relation to power ratio without any leads or external battery packs and the Godox mount, more on that later.

For my uses the Godox AD300 is an ideal light for location work as that extra half a stop of light is a big deal to me, yes, I know I can move the light in closer, but what if you can’t or don’t wont to?

 As my lighting experience and knowledge have grown, I have become particularly interested in hard light and up until now most of the long throw reflectors I have used have a Bowens mount, which means using the Godox S Bracket.

Back to the Godox mount on the AD300 pro, this is where I think the form factor of the AD300 pro and the extra half stop are really useful. For me personally if I can reduce the amount of kit I have to carry, I can also reduce the weight, I am also less liable to forget something. Previously if I choose to walk into a location off the beaten track, I would really notice the extra weight of the kit I carried.

I have just received the Godox AD-R12 Long Focus Reflector for the Godox mount on the AD300 pro and from the initial tests I have conducted with it, it’s ideal for my needs. No longer do I need to carry the S bracket or the newer S2 bracket in order to mount a reflector to throw light further and the extra half a stop of light can make a real difference. Moreover, the AD-12 is smaller and lighter too.        

Just like many of the other Wistro flashes you can see the T.1 flash durations that can be turned on via the custom functions on the AD300 Pro, which are then displayed on the back the LCD which is useful for determining how well the flash can freeze motion at a given power setting listed below.

1/256 : 1/12,000
1/128: 1/9460
1/64: 1/7660
1/32: 1/5850
1/16: 1/4400
⅛: 1/2810
¼: 1/1670
½: 1/805
1/1: 1/280

Currently there is little info on the web in relation to the Godox AD300 pro and the Godox AD-R12 Long Focus Reflector, so I will be adding a blog, some video and images very soon.

 

MagBounce & Green Lanes

MagBounce & Green Lanes

The Coronavirus is having an effect on everyone and everything so lots of people are finding themselves with more time on their hands, which could be a good or bad thing depending on one’s financial circumstances. Before the Covid19 crisis, distance and travel were not an issue, it is perhaps only now that we are missing the ability to where and when we desire. I personally am trying to keep my photographic brain active even if we are confined to our local area, although this has led to Fran & I discovering some beautiful local Green Lanes and making the most of our one form of exercise a day. I don’t always take a camera with me on these little escapes from the house, but I decided to revisit one of Green Lane we have discovered and take a flash, a Magbounce and a very small and portable light stand on the walk and take a few images whilst out walking keeping kit lighting kit as portable and light as possible. As my main focus of photography work is equestrian and lifestyle photography, I mainly use C Stands for my lighting, so keeping kit light and ultra-portable is not so important. I think the last wedding we photographed was about three years ago and used to bounce flash and or use a reflector. We had a wedding booked for July, but since the lockdown, this has now been cancelled. However, I had planned on using some very portable lighting kit during the wedding (Magbounce & Magsphere) as wedding are fast paced small and light becomes a priority. I have had some Magmod kit for a few years now and to be honest it rarely gets used, but I have never owned or used the Magbounce, so decided to give it a try prior to the wedding we did have booked before it was cancelled. I purchased the Magbounce just before the Coronavirus pandemic, as my intention was to spend the spring and early summer playing around with it and see what was possible with it, yes you can bounce light off of walls and ceilings, but I was curious as to what the Magbounce could do where there were no wall or ceilings, it was the portability that really appealed to me. As far a testing out the Magbounce out fully, it’s still early days, but for a really small portable lighting mod, so far, it’s growing on me. Will the Magbounce replace the lighting mods I use for equine and lifestyle off camera flash? No, it won’t, but I do intend on trying out some new ideas and for locations where there are no walls or ceilings and I want ultra-portability, this little lighting mod does have a lot of potential.

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