Once in awhile, I write tutorials and articles for various photography sites. I wrote & shot this one a few weeks ago, but after talking it over with an editor, I decided to change tack and do something different.
However, I still think this is kinda cool, even despite its problems. So..
The hardest part was balancing the light output for two reasons:
1. The daylight level kept changing because of the clouds drifting by, and even though the light was indirect, it still was a bit unpredictable.
2. My flash doesn’t have any controls, so I diffused it with layers of tracing papers. Diffuse it too much, the ice was gray (it’s still a little gray on right side). Don’t diffuse it enough, it’s overexposed.
Side note, regarding the overexposure: While I could’ve changed the camera settings to compensate, the tricky part was my camera will not sync with a wireless flash at shutter speeds faster than 1/180th of second.
I still think this image is a bit too strong/crisp. I was going for a sort of an angelic halo look, and I haven’t quite figured out how to achieve that look without a lot of postprocessing, which I try to avoid where possible. And that’s why I went back to drawing board on this idea.
Below is the setup shot, minus the ice & beer. The paper is hanging on the patio door because I was concerned the ice would reflect the metal frame of the door, and also to try control the variable indirect light (it helped a little).