North face

This is one of my favorite family photos (shot in 2016), and I didn't even take it...

We had set up in a little area on the always-shady north side of the house for some photos of everyone who came to Patrick's first communion. I was playing with the concept that by sticking us in the shade, even with a bright background I can use the relative darkness of the shade to create some more flattering shadows on our faces with the light I would add.

At the time, I apparently wasn't going for light that made sense with the scene, just light that (I thought) looked cool. So there is a big, soft light on us, coming from high camera right and a warm, glowy kind of light hitting the backs of our heads to provide a little color-separation from the bright-but-not-overly-warm background.

I have to thank Auntie Maria for wielding the camera when it was my turn to be on the other side of it. With all the settings dialed-in on full manual, she could just concentrate on capturing a nice moment. Great shot!

Photo credit: Maria Cotoia

Strobist info: The key light was a Lumopro LP-180, sporting a 1/4 CTO warming gel, in a Photek Softlighter II 5-foot reflective umbrella without the diffusion sock (since we needed a LOT of light to compete with the bright sunlight in the background). It was boomed overhead on a C-stand and fired at 1/2 power. The rim/hair light was an SB-800 with a full CTO warming gel sitting low on a stand way in the background, aimed up at the backs of our heads and fired at 1/4 power or so.