January 20, 2012

An Evening at the Beach #2

In this photo of Sarah, I wanted to include the setting sun, the fast falloff of light from right to left and yet get some light on Sarah’s face.  
I underexposed the ambient light reading by about four stops and then just splashed some light on Sarah’s face by using a Nikon SB800 with a snoot and an orange gel (to simulate the light of the sunset).  I should have changed my white balance to K3500 to bring out more of the blues in the sky and to reduce the orange on Sarah's face. 
Because of the bright light from the setting sun, I was using such a fast shutter speed that my SB800 was forced to be in high-speed synch mode, which greatly reduces the range of the flash.  The flash was on my camera and I set it to TTL mode.  I must admit, I really do not understand all the decisions my camera and flash make when the flash is set to TTL mode so, for me, it's a hit or miss proposition every time I use TTL.
Camera settings:  Nikon D3, Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8 at 200mm, f/3.3 and 1/750th of a second with Nikon SB800 with orange gel attached shot in high-speed synch mode. 
Post Processing: 
Lightroom 3:  Set black point, added contrast with a mild curve and cropped to 4:5 ratio. 
Photoshop CS5:  Dodged and burned various parts of photo, added curves adjustment for contrast and used various nik Colorefex Pro filters.


  1. Beautiful photo. Your handling of her and the setting sun is extremely well done.

  2. She is a little too orange but overall the photo is stunning.

  3. I like this one a lot except for the way she has her hands.

  4. Did the light really change that much from right to left? It seems a bit too much. The bright sun does draw my eye away from Sarah but I am not sure that it is a distraction.

  5. Sarah is beautiful and what you did with the setting sunset is also. Great job.