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Chapter 4 Assignments

With a greater understanding of light, you will have much more control over the outcome of your images. Remember that light is the single most important element in your photographs. How you work with the light and your exposures directly relates to whether your images will look the way you visualize them.

Quality and Quantity of Light

Find a subject close to your home that you can revisit over the course of several days at different times. Photograph the subject under different light conditions to see the effects light has on the mood and character of your subject. Shoot at sunrise, sunset, midday, twilight, and on an overcast day. Then compare the images to see the effects the light has on the subject. Review your exposures and study the EXIF data to see how your settings changed at different times of day based on the quantity of light.

Direction of Light

Once again, you will need to stretch this assignment over a few days to be able to see the change in the direction of light. Select a few subjects that you can photograph from several angles so you can compare the direction of light and how it affects your subject. Begin with front lighting. Move around so the light is behind your subject and take another photograph. Then shoot your subject with the light coming from the side. Compare the results to see what effect the direction of light has on your subject.

Exposure Compensation

If you have a bracket setting on your camera, you can use it for this assignment. With your camera mounted on a tripod, shoot a sequence of at least five photographs beginning with the metered value followed by a shot at minus 1 exposure compensation and then minus 2 exposure compensation. Then dial in plus 1 and plus 2, and shoot at each exposure setting. Compare the results to see the effect of darkening the image and adding drama or brightening the subject to make it feel brighter.

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