Special Effects are Subject Dependent

Before the Dot Com bust,  I also wrote for several computer magazines and one of the things I dreamed up was “Farace’s Laws of the Computing Universe.” I figured  if Murphy and Burke (my inspiration) could have their own laws so could I.  When I started writing exclusively about photography, I brought those laws into my magazines and books.

One of the most important of all of Farace’s Laws of the Imaging Universe is that all special effects are subject dependent. A filter or effect that may look great for one kind of subject may not look so hot when applied to another, different subject. And it just isn’t the subject matter that effects the final look but also how the image was made. Low key, high key lighting and overall mood all respond to special effects filters differently and there’s only one to find out: Try it! As I discovered while testing Tiffen’s Dfx Digital Filter Suite.

My subject was Ashley Rae who has a distinctively film noir look I started by applying the Agfa APX 100 filter from Dfx’s Film Stock filters then applied (to a new layer) and then Venetian Blinds from the Gobo filters that are found in the Light collection. These are many dozens of filters in this collection of presets and some might be more properly called cuculoris. But no matter what you call them, they are infinity adjustable for effect and placement within both the preview window and using Parameters.

Original image shot with Canon EOS-1D Mark IIN and EF 135mm f/2.8 SF lens with an exposure of 1/160 sec at f/3.2 and ISO 400.

Trivia: A cuculoris is a device for producing patterned illumination and creates a natural look by breaking up the light from a man made source. It can be used to simulate movement by passing shadows or light coming through a leafy canopy or in this case, Venetian Blinds.

Joe is author of Joe Farace’s Glamour Photography that features information about using minimal equipment demonstrating how to shoot glamour portraits in available light situations or using minimal lighting like speedlights. Affordable new and used copies are available from Amazon.com.

Author: Joe Farace

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