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Softbox, please help!

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  #1  
Old 01-04-2008, 10:50 AM
myfairies's Avatar
myfairies myfairies is offline
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Softbox, please help!

I just bought a softbox tent cube with 4 lights 50w each. I have a digital Canon PowerShot A710IS and I'm trying to learn.....

I was very disappointed to see that the result has nothing to see with what I expected.

Expecially the light: the white of the box turn in a sort of grey/yellow and I could improve it with photoshop (using a colder photo filter) but it still isn't good.

Then the background which is visible, and the ground: I ironed the material to be used as a background/ground but in the photo it is visible all the same.

I see lots of nice pictures with white (pure white) background and I would like to recreate that sort of photos.

Does anyone have experience with this sort of softbox or can give me any advice?

I would really appreciate it!
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  #2  
Old 01-04-2008, 11:08 AM
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Frank Lopes Frank Lopes is offline
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Re: Softbox, please help!

You didn't say what kind of lights these were but I assume they are incandescent lights.

It sounds like the white balance of the camera is off.

See if the camera has a white balance setting for incandescent and try again. You should be ok then.

Quote:
Originally Posted by myfairies View Post
I just bought a softbox tent cube with 4 lights 50w each. I have a digital Canon PowerShot A710IS and I'm trying to learn.....

I was very disappointed to see that the result has nothing to see with what I expected.

Expecially the light: the white of the box turn in a sort of grey/yellow and I could improve it with photoshop (using a colder photo filter) but it still isn't good.

Then the background which is visible, and the ground: I ironed the material to be used as a background/ground but in the photo it is visible all the same.

I see lots of nice pictures with white (pure white) background and I would like to recreate that sort of photos.

Does anyone have experience with this sort of softbox or can give me any advice?

I would really appreciate it!
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  #3  
Old 01-04-2008, 11:09 AM
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Stephen A Stephen A is offline
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Re: Softbox, please help!

I'm not sure about your colors - could be cheap lights? But your background should be a easy fix - set your aperture to the LOWEST value on the lens. This won't be good if you're shooting a wide-angle lens, as it will make your stuff distorted - so try a 50mm or 70mm.

As far as a "pure white" background, I'm not sure - I've never shot with a soft box (although I'd love to make one). I can see the large aperture trick making the background more consistent, as it limits your DOP (Depth of Field) greatly.
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  #4  
Old 01-04-2008, 11:15 AM
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jessibelle15 jessibelle15 is offline
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Re: Softbox, please help!

If you're trying to get your background a bright white you should try lighting the background separately from the subject. Generally 2 heads on either side of the background with the lights bouncing into either reflective umbrellas or bounce flats with the power pack turned up relatively high, and the soft box lighting the subject.
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  #5  
Old 01-04-2008, 11:19 AM
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0lBaldy 0lBaldy is offline
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Re: Softbox, please help!

Use the custom white balance setting and shoot a piece of white paper
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  #6  
Old 01-04-2008, 01:50 PM
pixelzombie pixelzombie is offline
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Re: Softbox, please help!

this might be of some help to you:

http://www.outbackphoto.com/workflow/wf_65/essay.html

http://www.outbackphoto.com/workflow/wf_76/essay.html
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  #7  
Old 01-04-2008, 01:56 PM
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Stephen A Stephen A is offline
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Re: Softbox, please help!

Quote:
Originally Posted by pixelzombie View Post
Wowee, I've heard of them being used but I've never seen the results - this sure beats eyeing your colors in Lightroom.

Thanks for the awesome link
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  #8  
Old 01-04-2008, 02:08 PM
pixelzombie pixelzombie is offline
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Re: Softbox, please help!

yeah, it makes a big difference..that was the 1st thing they told us when i went to school back in the 80's(this was a class for drum scanning operators), the highlight or white point setting as photographers call it is VERY important...
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  #9  
Old 01-05-2008, 04:39 PM
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myfairies myfairies is offline
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Re: Softbox, please help!

thank you very much to everybody for your help. I'll try to implement those information and see what happens!
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  #10  
Old 01-13-2008, 05:09 AM
Inkjet Inkjet is offline
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Re: Softbox, please help!

When I shoot in my Light Tent I set my white balance using a Gray Card. Being a known neutral target this eliminates white balance problems.

While I have the card in the subject position I use the Histogram function to fine tune my exposure. Most digital cameras seem to be set to under expose by about half a step. I adjust my exposure to get the spike exactly in the middle. (See shot)

A Grey card is 50% grey so if I set the Histogram to match I've minimised my exposure correction.

With most subjects this gives a very good exposure. The attached photo is an uncorrected shot straight out of the camera.

For the background I use light white or coloured card available from most art supply houses.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Histogram-Spike.jpg (1.7 KB, 8 views)
File Type: jpg Sample.jpg (11.5 KB, 17 views)
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