Edge of Shade Magic

In the Photo Fix, we've tried to drill into everyone's head that open shade is your best friend when it comes to finding soft, beautiful light.

But not all shade is created equal. Even open shade has a sweet spot...a place where the light is most beautiful. That sweet spot is right on the edge of the shade.

So what do we mean by the edge of the shade? That's the topic of this month's Master Class.

Simply put, the edge of the shade is literally that "line" where the shade meets the sun. Place your subject as close to this "edge" as possible for 3 great benefits:

  1. More light into the eyes
  2. Softer light (from the bigger light source)
  3. Cleaner, more specular light, including beautiful shadow fall off.

Let's take a look at the video:

Last thing I thought I'd include from the video above is a simple comparison of 2 shots:

  1. The first at the edge of the shade
  2. The second in the middle of the shade (the one by the tree trunk)

The results speak for themselves (both are SOOC). First, here's the edge of the shade:

Edge of Shade

And below is the middle of the shade (SOOC):

Middle of Shade

Of course, I wanted to see what one would look like with a simple film preset. Here's our Fuji 160 preset applied:


Until next time...work in the edges.