Art, Photography, Still LIfe

Lighting the Ballet

Since I had bought that globe for more a spot light, I decided to have another go at the teacup ballet, that I did last week.

This is the colour that the image ended up with.  I don’t mind the yellow tinge.  I find it warm and nice.  I set the image up much the same as I did last time, but this time I put down some cloth that I was hoping would be like the original image.  I think what was used in the original image was much thicker and I found what I used a bit too flimsy.

When I was processing this image I used the new software that I have, Photomatix, to do them.  I have no real idea what I am doing with it, but I just played, so I hope you think they turned out OK.

After Photomatix I then did some post editing in Photoshop.

I converted the image to black and white and added various filters.  I’m unsure of which one I like more.  Perhaps it really is up to personal taste.  The light may have been too strong again.

While I had everything set up, I thought I might have some more fun with my dancing sugar bowls.

Again, the HDR was processed in Photomatix.  I think the images do come out well and am looking forward to doing more with it.

I like this perspective, with the long shadow.  I did change the light so it was coming more from the side.  I think the back lighting works really well, and I’m starting to realise that for me to do these images well, then I need to start having better lighting.  I do believe lighting is a very important key.

I’ve shown a similar image to this one before.  My ballet dancing sugar bowls.  I am quite pleased with this one as well.  The shadows really make it.  Again, the light was placed on the side.  It may have been interesting to have added a second light, a softer one on the other side, or to the front.  There is a lot that can be done with lighting.

These images are starting to get closer to what I’m trying to achieve with my still life images.  I am looking forward to playing with the light a lot more.


  1. Interesting…. light really does have a big effect on the final product…. :) Also quite like the yellow tinge… :) **

    • I like the single one two. I keep trying out different compositions. Looking forward to more experimentation. Hopefully learning more photoshop skills will help make them look really good.

  2. SaptarshiC says

    I think this version is a lot closer to the original image that you were trying to recreate. I like it.

    I like how the light bounces all over the place inside the cup to produce the ghostly quality I mentioned earlier.

    • Cool, great to hear that you like it. It is always a bonus.
      I like that ghostly quality as well. How did you make that word in italics? :)

      • SaptarshiC says

        HTML tags. I don’t think all the tags work, but I found that the ones for italics do.
        type to begin the tag and to end the tag (without the spaces in between the characters) .

      • SaptarshiC says

        Apparently, adding spaces doesn’t work. Look it up on google, You’ll know what I mean.

  3. Love the color on the first image – it looks warm and inviting.
    A question: If you wanted the shadows to be ‘sharp’, all the way out to the handles, would you move the light source closer? (Not that I think you ‘missed’ that in the one you took – it’s lovely like it is. I was just wondering. :) )

    • That is a good question. The light was quite close, I think it might have to use a completely different type of light to achieve that. I just use a light on a stand that we bought at Ikea many years ago. I put one of those spot light globes in it, 60W. I’m sure a much stronger photographic light would give a much result. Maybe we will find out one day. I would have liked the handles to have stood more too.

  4. Pingback: Teacup Ballet ReWorked « Leanne Cole PHOTOGRAPHY

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