Working on the location in nature is a bit different then working in the city where you can find a lot of different kinds of light structures. When I first started to work in the Alps I faced a problem of working with open sky. High in the mountains cloudy days are rare so conservatively speaking you only have golden hour. Same goes to beaches and deserts.

But what if you have 6–8 looks to shoot (that is a standard size of fashion editorial). Even if you don’t travel between locations you would need 4 hours at least. The answer is working on light surfaces — snow or sand. The surface works as a huge reflector and it can balance your picture. Moreover, the closer your model is to the surface (standing vs sitting vs lying) the more balanced your picture will be.

Lead picture was made at the beach during a sunny day in May. Sun is in front of the model, but she turns back to the camera. If she would stand, contra would give her a big oriole and “burn” small hair on the side of her face. But as she is sitting, sand in front of her reflects big portion of light back on her face so contra becomes relatively smaller.

Here we have sunny day very high in the mountains in late Spring, it’s so bright model has to wear glasses. But compare softness of the shadows with this picture where the sun is the same in brightness, but we have asphalt instead of snow.

NextUp and last thing we will discuss in Big Light Tutorial will be night photoshoots