Create the light
If it doesn't look great, change the light.
You can do this by moving closer to the light, out of the shadows, or add a black reflector to one side of your subject. The reflector can be anything from a piece of paper or material to a pro reflector. Black will stop the light bouncing back into your subject, giving you more shadow.
White/silver/gold will bounce light back into your subject, minimising shadows or highlighting the whites more. Reflectors work best when angled up to the sun - wiggle it around to get the light you want. You will be able to see the light bouncing. If it is cloudy, or there is no sun, this won't work, you will have to bounce light onto the reflector. Remember, you are going to reflect the colour of the reflector into your subject with the light.
Gold = warm tones
Silver = cool tones
White = neutral tones
Bring the reflector in closer.
Surround your subject with white so light bounces everywhere.
How to light differently
- add texture and three dimension
- create haze, rim of hair light, silhouette
- use a reflector, white wall, flash
Will not be as bright as the background.
Haze - the sun just out of frame but still in the sky (not behind a mountain or the horizon). More flare and artefacts - have the sun in the frame and use a longer lens.
Rays work well when you allow the lens to get a snippet of the sun in the frame, either on the edge of the frame or peaking out from behind something. A wider lens is the best bet as it will stretch the light a bit and leave it streaking. Increasing your aperture will define the rays more.
Night photography - tripod, long exposure for light trails
The closer the subject is to the window the more contrast, harder and moody the lighting.
Using a reflector differently
On a side note - I saw a cool trick of cutting a hole in the centre of a reflector and sticking the camera through there. Perfect beauty lighting on a shoestring.
Using reflectors to bounce light back into your subject.
The images above are showing the difference in reflector light.
Watch this demo...