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How to take a group picture of 70 people

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Bernhard Walzl
How to take a group picture of 70 people
on Aug 18, 2016 at 11:51:48 pm

Hi!

I have already googled this topic and there are many hints and opinions out there so I was wondering if someone of you has some practical advice.

I am meant to take a photograph of about 70 people. I will line them up in 3 rows (people on their knees or sitting, short people, and tall people in the back).
The picture will be taken a bit after noon.
I do not have a flash or any other light source than the sun. It is hot where I am so I can't let them out there standing for longer than a minute or two.

The question i have is about lighting. Would you place them that the sun is in their back, from the side or front? If the sun is in the groups back, i won't have shadows in their faces but exposure will be difficult without flash?

I use a 60D, nothing special DSLR.

Thanks for your advice.


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Warren Eig
Re: How to take a group picture of 70 people
on Aug 19, 2016 at 4:26:11 pm

Can you put them so the sun is at your back and they will be front lit. This is usually the best way to light. And try not to do it at Noon when the sun is directly overhead or you'll just get some harsh shadows.

Warren Eig
O 310-470-0905


email: info@babyboompictures.com
website: http://www.BabyBoomPictures.com



For Camera Accessories - Monitors and Batteries
website: http://www.EigRig.com



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Bernhard Walzl
Re: How to take a group picture of 70 people
on Aug 19, 2016 at 5:10:11 pm

Thanks Warren!
Would you mind me emailing you the picture I took and you give me some feedback of what you see and think?


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Warren Eig
Re: How to take a group picture of 70 people
on Aug 19, 2016 at 5:15:23 pm

Sure.

Warren Eig
O 310-470-0905


email: info@babyboompictures.com
website: http://www.BabyBoomPictures.com



For Camera Accessories - Monitors and Batteries
website: http://www.EigRig.com



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Blaise Douros
Re: How to take a group picture of 70 people
on Aug 19, 2016 at 5:08:33 pm

I don't know if it's powerful enough for that many people, but I'd suggest trying at least one shot using your built-in flash to fill in the shadows. That can mitigate the worst of the raccoon eyes that will be created by the noon overhead sun, and provide a bit of catchlight in their eyes.


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Bernhard Walzl
Re: How to take a group picture of 70 people
on Aug 19, 2016 at 5:11:50 pm

The inbuilt flash has no effect. People are at least 5-6 metres away from the camera and we have a bright sunny day. There is no way the inbuilt flash will reach anywhere near the group unfortunately.


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Ryan Holmes
Re: How to take a group picture of 70 people
on Aug 20, 2016 at 10:51:43 pm

[Bernhard Walzl] "The picture will be taken a bit after noon."

[Bernhard Walzl] "Would you place them that the sun is in their back, from the side or front?"

You can't shoot this at noon (or 11am or 1pm) and get anything other than the sun directly overhead. Which means it won't matter if you want front light or backlight, because you're only option at those hours is directly overhead light. That will create deep shadows under the eyes and neck.

You're best options are to move the shoot to a more "sun-friendly" time - 8am? 9am? 5pm? 6pm? The times when the sun is less overhead and more in your eyes. Then you can use Warren's advice to put the sun at your back and use it as your main light source. Your other option is to shoot this at noon in a heavily shaded environment (park, forest, large tent?). The shade would provide a diffuse and more even lighting to a noon-day sun.

Your third option is to shoot it at noon and embrace the dark circles under their eyes, because that's just how it works from 11am-2pm.

Ryan Holmes
http://www.ryanholmes.me
@CutColorPost


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