#Callingtheshots – A series of art direction and photography tips: Bright sunshine.

Working so much in the outdoors in the UK, high ‘hard’ light isn’t something that causes too many problems. But sometimes we do actually get decent sun, and oddly that can cause a lot of trouble. Hard shadows across products and the faces of models must be considered. The dreaded dark ‘Panda eye’ shadows aren’t a good look even for the most beautiful of people.

However I’m really not one for trying to fight the sunshine with artificial scrims, flash and extra lights – if you’re going to go to that extent you might as well be back in a studio.

Also whilst there might be various ‘technically’ correct ways to deal with natural hard light you might be able to get effective shots by breaking the rules – as ever this should be dictated by the brand you’re working on, and the art director and photographer working it through.

Here’s a shot from a gloriously sunny Yorkshire. Back lit, face naturally in shadow, and then a little bit of reflected light for the product. @jodilakin shot by @paudiephoto for @mcnairshirts

Women in red wool shirt. Specialist outdoor brand agency