Figure Photography

Rembrandt Aegis

Here’s a shot of Alter’s Aegis with Rembrandt lighting, as well as rim lighting from directly behind the subject. The latter proved to be difficult, because I had to aim the flash gun from 6 feet away, and any small change in angles would ruin the alignment.

Rembrandt lighting is a technique name after the Dutch painter of the same name. It involves lighting the subject from off to one side at approximately 45 degree angle. This forms pleasing shadows over the face,  most noticeably a triangular patch of light on the side furthest from the light.

This technique may not work well for all anime figures because many of them lack noses significant enough cast a shadow, but thankfully Aegis does.

The other challenge with this shot is that the eye on the darker side of the face is very dimly lit. This is something I tried to fix by adjusting the positioning of the light source many times, but in the end I concluded that there is simply no way to lighting both eyes while preserving the interesting shadows over the face. Thankfully, I can always cheat a bit in post-processing by adding a local adjusting brush onto her pupil and messing around with the brightness.

Just as a bonus, here’s the other shot from the same evening, this time with the light source not so far off to the side. While both eyes are lit, the shot does feel flat when compared to the other. I don’t think it’s bad per se, but I had the intention of trying something new when photographing this figure, and I’m glad I did.

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