Friday, August 15, 2008

lens flare tutorial

So it's not big secret that I love lens flare and I shoot as much of it as I can get my 50 1.4 lens on! It feels good to look at, it feels good to shoot- especially since it seems like a kind of elusive thing for some....well it was for me until I kind of figured it out... but didn't realize what my 'formula' was until I actually went back in Light Room and checked my settings and found the common denominator.

I mean, I knew it as I was shooting - but kind of innately- I'd check, adjust my settings, check, adjust, GET IT, flail, shoot, flail, YELL, check, FLAIL, probably punch Mike out of excitement, shoot, YELL.... you get the picture!

Lens flare is pretty exciting stuff!

So, after being asked a bunch of times how to actually 'get' sun flare I figured I would post some shots with their settings and let you all see the common denominators!

This first shot was from a recent e shoot in the sunflower fields as sunset- time of day plays a major part in getting the warmest flair.
lens: 50mm 1.4 @ f2.2
ISO: 100
shutter: 1/800 sec

Mary & Justin were shot in the late afternoon as well. Another determining factor in successfully getting your flare is that you actually have to SEE it in your lens. I play around until it is in just the right spot, probably looking pretty foolish in the process!
lens: 50mm 1.4 @ f 3.2
ISO: 160
shutter: 1/1000 sec

My boy Jeff Reilly's wedding on the shore:
Again, late afternoon (common denominator)
I see the flare in my lens
and my settings are:
lens: 70-200mm @ 75mm / @ f2.8
ISO: 100
shutter: 1/800 sec

A wedding in Vienna:
Late afternoon, yes
but: a little bit of a change here. I stopped my lens WAY down to f 13 and look at the difference in the actual flare towards the top of the flare- the hexagonal shapes are popping out.... You can see the weird shapes that appear- I really like it!
lens: 50mm 1.4 @ f 13
ISO: 250
shutter: 1/80 sec

An E shoot with Liz and Pepsi in Fairfield:
Again, I stopped WAY down and got the crazy shapes here again too:
lens: 50mm 1.4 @ f 16
ISO: 100
shutter: 1/80 sec

I snagged this picture of Mike's to show you how a different lens can change up your flare:
He shot this with his 50 mm 1.8 (I have the 1.4, that is like 20 years old and a very different lens)
I can always tell Mike's flare shots from mine as his tend to have a red cast on the rings
Cool, right?


SO....
Time of day to me seems like the biggest overall connector: I don't think I have gotten lens flare in the morning, or maybe I'm just not up that early shooting, is more like it!! So:
LATE AFTERNOON
LOW ISO
PRETTY OPEN LENS FOR THE BIG LORD OF THE RINGS FLARE
STOP DOWN FOR CRAZY TIME SHAPES
DIFFERENT LENSES YIELD DIFFERENT FLARE
AND MOST IMPORTANTLY.... SEE THE FLARE IN YOUR LENS!!

I felt like shouting those out, Nikki Nicole style!

19 comments:

dorelies said...

Thanks for let me show a little bit in your work, as I'm so avid for all your tipps. I've to try it out in the next days and hope the sun will come again (now it is raining).
Tomorrow I've got the honor to make the second shooting together with Wolfgang and Daniela. A wedding in my homevillage Gumpoldskirchen! Thank's again for your stay in Vienna and your workshop!!!

laurie said...

hmmmm so you're saying if I shoot a high iso, early in the morning, and don't see a flare in my lense I might not get lense flare?? well by golly that might explain what I am doing wrong..hehe seriously now I have a mental checklist when I am trying to get flare...kinda like my visual sweep :)

Salty Grapes Photography said...

WOOOOOOOOO HOOOOOOOOOO! Thank you for doing this. Knowing you should actually *see* it in the lens is incredibly helpful to me... HA HA! Now if only the sun would actually shine after I get home from work so I can play around... =)

STEVE DePINO said...

You know what, Clara, if you want me to wear 37 pieces of flair, like your pretty boy over there, Brian, why don't you just make the minimum 37 pieces of flair?

Robin Dini Photography said...

rock on sister! thanks for the tip!

Eric Foley said...

You are the Flare Masta!

christine said...

thank you flare master for the inspiration!!!!

i am off to a wedding at the riverhouse and will try your technique this afternoon...late afternoon!!!!

and I LOVE YOUR SHOUT OUT!!!!

THATS RIGHT NIKKI NIC STYLE!!

nikki nicole photography said...

OPPS THE ABOVE POST IS ME!!!!

i did it again posting form someone elses account signed in ha!!!!!

thank you flare master for the inspiration!!!!

i am off to a wedding at the riverhouse and will try your technique this afternoon...late afternoon!!!!

and I LOVE YOUR SHOUT OUT!!!!

THATS RIGHT NIKKI NIC STYLE!!

E. Broderick Photography said...

Yeah! I have played around a bit with this lately but am glad to know some tips for future attempts. Thanks for sharing. Love these shots!

Jenna Stevens said...

Ugh! Thanks SO much! I have been googling all morning long trying to find tips on how to get the amazing lens flare in shots and every place that pops up talks about how NOT to get flare. I can't wait for the sun to start setting to try all this out! Thank you!

hoopla said...

Thanks for these tips. I assume that by "stepping down" you mean increasing the f-stop value (and decreasing the size of the hole)

Craig said...

Thanks for sharing this wonderful and insightful post. I have a few at my site if you'd ever like to check them out too. lusterstudios.com... Lovin' the flare!

Veetrag said...

Thank you for such nice tutorial. I have been trying to shoot something similar for long but without luck, with these new settings and inspiration I am going to try again till success.

Ryan Worthington said...

Wow, the lens flare on these pictures makes them look so professional! Thanks for the tips!

Бронислав Борило said...

Thanks a lot!
Very beneficial information!
Will try 4 sure!!!
Greetings from Russia!

David Procter said...

Flare has been an illusive creature for me and I have never managed to catch it! It's usually because I keep forgetting to try. I was going to set out one day to research it and write a blog post on it but you've done a smashing job here so I don't need to. Thanks for the tips!
David@david-procter.com

David Procter said...

Flare has been an illusive creature for me and I have never managed to catch it! It's usually because I keep forgetting to try. I was going to set out one day to research it and write a blog post on it but you've done a smashing job here so I don't need to. Thanks for the tips!
David@david-procter.com

Sandi said...

It was wonderful. Ur shots. Did u use lens filter such as UV filter on those shot? Thx..

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