Shaping Light: Use Light Modifiers to Create Amazing Studio and Location Photographs

Shaping Light: Use Light Modifiers to Create Amazing Studio and Location Photographs

by Glenn Rand, Tim Meyer


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While light is required to make a photograph, light alone is not enough. More often, it is the way the light has been modified and shaped that brings an image to life. In this book, Glenn Rand and Tim Meyer offer a comprehensive approach to the tools and techniques photographers can use to shape the light—creating the style, energy, emotion, and feeling that make a photograph exceptional. Clear text is paired with ample before-and-after images and diagrams to make learning easy. Beginning with the physics of light, the authors show you how to predict light’s interaction with the surface of the subject/object you are photographing. Based on this, you can begin to make informed decisions about what kinds of modifiers will help you achieve the look you want. Using softboxes, umbrellas, masks, gels, reflectors, and more, you’ll learn to precisely control the light’s diffused edge and ratio for precise, flawless results.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781608957057
Publisher: Amherst Media, Incorporated
Publication date: 05/13/2014
Pages: 128
Product dimensions: 7.50(w) x 9.90(h) x 0.40(d)

About the Author

While Glenn Rand is best known as a photographic educator he has also produced, taught and written about photography, illustration and crafts. His photographs are in thirty public museum collections in the United States, Europe and Japan and he has exhibit widely. He has published and lectured extensively about photography and digital imaging ranging from commercial aesthetics to the technical fine points lighting. Glenn has authored eleven books including “Teaching Photography” (2006) “The Portrait”, (2009) “Shaping Light” (2013), and contributes regularly to various periodicals. Many of the books have been translated into Chinese, Korean and German language versions.

Glenn has taught and administered in public education, community colleges and universities since 1966. For the past three years he has been associated with Adrian College. In conjunction with these academic roles and consulting he has developed and reorganized several curricula for fine art photography, commercial photography, digital imaging and allied curricula.

He received his Bachelor and Master of Arts from Purdue University with a Doctorate from the University of Cincinnati centering on the Psychology of educational spaces with post-doctoral research as a Visiting Scholar at the University of Michigan.

His consultant clients have included the Eastman Kodak Company, Ford Motor Company, Photo Marketing Association International, the Ministry of Education of Finland as well as many other businesses and several colleges.
Photographer, educator and author, Tim Meyer is passionate about the field of photography. Drawing from 30 years as a professional photographer, he brings experience and sustained energy to his work. Mixing our rich artistic heritage with today’s modern styles, his images enlighten and inspire.

Tim possesses the Professional Photographers of America’s coveted Masters and Craftsman Degrees, and earned an academic Master of Arts Degree and a Master of Fine Arts Degree, both in Fine Art Photography. In addition to numerous one-man exhibitions of his fine art work, his photography has been internationally recognized for its innovative style and technique.

He currently teaches full-time and serves as the Lead Portrait Instructor at Brooks Institute. His nationally acclaimed portrait and wedding studio, Meyer Photography, is managed by his partner in business and life, Dea Meyer.

Tim is honored to be sponsored by H&H Color Lab, Big Folio and Triple Scoop Music. He also speaks and teaches internationally for the MAC Group Pro Educational Team, representing, among others, Sekonic, Pocket Wizard, Profoto and Creative Light product lines.

Tim’s writings on photography and art have been published internationally and his book, The Portrait - Understanding Portrait Photography, co-written with Glenn Rand and published by Rocky Nook, Inc., is available worldwide.

Tim's Credentials

• Master of Fine Arts, Fine Art Photography, Brooks Institute
• Master of Arts, Creative Photography, California State University, Fullerton
• Bachelor of Arts, Communication, California State University, Fullerton
• Master of Photography, Professional Photographers of America
• Craftsman Degree, Professional Photographers of America
• Certified Professional Photographer, Professional Photographers of America

Table of Contents

Shaping Light: Understanding Light Modifiers

Table of Contents

01 Introduction

02 Simplified Light Concepts


Intensity and the law of the inverse square


Specular surfaces

Diffuse surfaces


Complexity of Light and Shadow

Perception and Light

03 Specular Light

Highlights and Shadows


04 Diffused Light

Highlights and Shadows


04-a Defining Modifiers

05 Beam Controllers




Source Placement and Direction

Controlling Beam Spread

Lens Beam Control

06 Specular Modifiers

Bare bulb



07 Diffuse Modifiers

Diffuser panels



Reflector boards, flats and kites

08 Umbrellas

Surfaces and shape

Giant Reflectors

09 Intensity Modifiers

Shapers and Masks

Pattern Projections



Scrims, Dots and Fingers

Cones and Snoots


Other Added Intensities

10. Fill

Fill Light

Reducing Fill Light

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Shaping Light: Use Light Modifiers to Create Amazing Studio and Location Photographs 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
sobasphotos More than 1 year ago
They start out with the basic concepts of light and its main qualities. Then they discuss every possible type of modifier chapter by chapter. Each one is very thoroughly explained. There is a lot to be learned from this book especially by those who might be new to photography.