Author Topic: Shadows and photography.  (Read 2527 times)

Isolder74

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Shadows and photography.
« on: May 07, 2014, 10:59:25 AM »
I know that the Mythbusters soundly trounced this one using a tiny model however because they didn't do every one of their supposed examples they still say they can still make the claim. 

I have a friend, and used his excellent camera, who is a professional photographer and he sighs when he hears this stuff.  It is not hard to get the effects they claim can only be done in a studio with extra lighting with natural sunlight.  While I don't have examples to put up, I can assure you that in a shadow in bright sunlight you can get the effects such as the lit astronaut on the ladder or with the man on the moon image.  This is especially easy to do with a bright surface like white sand but that tends to be so bright that is sometimes requires lowering the shutter speed to the point that the shadow is so black that is almost doesn't allow you to even see the ground(especially if I frame the image to only show the subject an not the source of the shadow).  The surface of the moon is not as reflective as desert sand yet they claim that only explanation is fill lighting, however no matter what they claim you can't use a fill light without it's shadow appearing on film.  You can use more lights opposite each other to try and minimize the shadow but all that does in add more shadows to the situation.  You can not add extra lights without adding extra shadows there is no way to get around this.  It can not be avoided, and you can see this all over in movies in general.  Their claim just doesn't work!

Yet they want us to believe that NASA has a magic no shadow fill light in its closet! 

MrBogosity

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Re: Shadows and photography.
« Reply #1 on: May 07, 2014, 12:28:31 PM »
I remember learning about setting up and lighting a 3D CGI scene. The thing about CGI is, until recently it looked very artificial (and still quite often does) and so you REALLY need to be on your toes when presenting it to a viewer.

You could set up a scene and light it perfectly, but if the shadows LOOKED wrong it was bad. It doesn't matter if the shadows really would have looked that way in a real-world scene lit the same way and shot from the same angle. If it looks wrong, it's wrong and it needs to be changed.

I had to do some very creative things to get things to "look" right.

Our intuition is NOT a good judge of realism in this case.

Isolder74

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Re: Shadows and photography.
« Reply #2 on: May 07, 2014, 12:47:59 PM »
In the case of CGI one of the reasons that the lighting is so difficult is because we are so used to seeing shadows that when we see the perfectly crisp shadows that a digital system tends to produce it feels wrong.  We are so used to lighting that is created from a disk shaped light source millions of miles away that crisp perfect shadows just feels wrong.  Umbra and penumbra. 

Then we have the moon hoaxers try to tell us that the lack of crisp shadows is evidence of an artificial light when it's the other way around.

MrBogosity

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Re: Shadows and photography.
« Reply #3 on: May 07, 2014, 01:34:15 PM »
In the case of CGI one of the reasons that the lighting is so difficult is because we are so used to seeing shadows that when we see the perfectly crisp shadows that a digital system tends to produce it feels wrong.  We are so used to lighting that is created from a disk shaped light source millions of miles away that crisp perfect shadows just feels wrong.  Umbra and penumbra. 

Then we have the moon hoaxers try to tell us that the lack of crisp shadows is evidence of an artificial light when it's the other way around.

You can make those kinds of shadows with CGI.

I'm thinking mainly the angles of them, like what hoaxers see as "wrong" with the moon photos. I remember one time I was doing an outside scene on a patio, evening with lamp lighting from the walls, and a shadow was falling over one of the chairs. It was right, it was supposed to be there, it WOULD have been there in reality, but it didn't LOOK right. So I had to go into the scene and tell the light not to cast shadows on that particular chair.

Isolder74

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Re: Shadows and photography.
« Reply #4 on: May 07, 2014, 02:27:37 PM »
I still love how they constantly claim flat terrain but they obviously know it isn't.  Shadows do not work the ways they claim and they know it!

Ranger.JR

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Re: Shadows and photography.
« Reply #5 on: September 28, 2017, 11:47:46 PM »
I know that the Mythbusters soundly trounced this one using a tiny model however because they didn't do every one of their supposed examples they still say they can still make the claim. 

I have a friend, and used his excellent camera, who is a professional photographer and he sighs when he hears this stuff.  It is not hard to get the effects they claim can only be done in a studio with extra lighting with natural sunlight.  While I don't have examples to put up, I can assure you that in a shadow in bright sunlight you can get the effects such as the lit astronaut on the ladder or with the man on the moon image.  This is especially easy to do with a bright surface like white sand but that tends to be so bright that is sometimes requires lowering the shutter speed to the point that the shadow is so black that is almost doesn't allow you to even see the ground(especially if I frame the image to only show the subject an not the source of the shadow).  The surface of the moon is not as reflective as desert sand yet they claim that only explanation is fill lighting, however no matter what they claim you can't use a fill light without it's shadow appearing on film.  You can use more lights opposite each other to try and minimize the shadow but all that does in add more shadows to the situation.  You can not add extra lights without adding extra shadows there is no way to get around this.  It can not be avoided, and you can see this all over in movies in general.  Their claim just doesn't work!

Yet they want us to believe that NASA has a magic no shadow fill light in its closet!
The knowledge and techniques of lighting make the picture beautiful. Thanks a lot