Week 13: Portrait High Key


April 1, 2016 – Happy April Fool’s Day! Have I mentioned what a good sport my husband is? Cause he is. No foolin’. He never puts up a fuss when I ask him to model, even though he’s not wild about being in front of the camera.


52 WEEK PHOTO CHALLENGE

WEEK 13 Portrait: High Key

Expose to the right and create a light, airy high key portrait.

This technique was new to me, at least intentionally. I’ve made similar pictures in the past without knowing what I was doing–just going for a look, and while I certainly haven’t mastered it, I’ll get there. So what makes it high key? The exposure. If you have a camera (or editing software) with a histogram, expose until the bars move all the way to the right. That’s high key. Low key, to the left.

Yes. It looks overexposed before editing.

For this photo of Brian, I used only natural light, shooting him in the shade with our bright white truck in the sun behind him. Looking back, I should have opened it up even more.

Before and After

Since I didn’t quite get high key in camera, in Photoshop, I upped the contrast, blacks, and clarity, and desaturated to black and white. I also increased the exposure until the histogram moved farther right.

This rest of this post is going to seem  narcissistic  considering the number of self portraits included, but I needed to practice on myself before torturing my feller to get the final shot.

The Test Shots:

Using Sun directly behind me:

 

Shady Patio with truck behind (where I did my official shot of Brian). I really liked this shot, but didn’t like the unintentional soft focus, one of the toughest things to nail in a self-portrait.

 

And… The only one I did with a light kit instead of natural light, at the end of the work day with majorly ratty-assed hair. lorihighkey

My mom, who is also doing the challenge, asked how to achieve this technique on an iPhone. I wasn’t sure she could, so did an experiment, getting these two shots.

img_9094

img_9096

While there’s no histogram to see if they are truly high key, they certainly have the look, especially the second one using the window.

I want to do more of these, and master the technique. I learned a ton this week, much like I did during the panorama. That’s what’s cool about this challenge. Pushing your skills. So thanks Dale Foshe for starting this challenge.

Until next week’s Close Up Landscape…

Later gators!

1 Response


  • DianeBentley // // Reply

    Great tips Love the pics especially with the hat

Leave a Reply