University of Sheffield Photo Soc

Reminder for Meeting Tonight – Light Painting Tutorial

Hi everyone,

Just a reminder that there will be a talk on a photography technique called Light Painting tonight in Arts Tower Lecture Theatre 9 at 7.15. After the talk, we will be trying out the technique so bring your cameras, tripods if you have one and if any of you have a torch – bring it along!

It’s our last meeting before Christmas so hope to see a lot of you there!

Over and Out

Headshot Tutorial Review

Hi guys, thanks for everybody that came along yesterday for the introduction to headshot studio lighting. We powered through a huge amount of material so have been asked to post a few reminders as to what we did.

Equipment used: 1 Camera, Canon flashgun (aka a speedlight or strobe), Light stand, Radio triggers (attached to the flashguns and the camera to fire the flashes), Umbrella adapters (to connect the Flashgun with radio trigger to the light stand), 1 Umbrella.

Camera settings: 1/200th second shutter speed (normally the highest shutter speed we can use to cut down on ambient light)
ISO 100 (lowest possible, for the best quality)
Aperture f/8 (technically the ‘sharpest’, but dont be afraid of trying wider apertures if you really want shallow depth of field)
We used a ‘focal length‘ (zoom) of around 85mm. We saw that using wider focal lengths distorts the model’s face, whilst this can be ok sometimes, for this kind of shot, it’s pretty unflattering.
The flashguns were set to manual power, which we adjusted with trial and error.

What we did:

  • We took the flash away from the camera and off to the side to create more depth, reduce shiny reflections on the face and to get rid of the shadow which fell on the wall.
  • Because the light is so small in relation to our subject, the transition between light and shadow is very ‘hard’. To soften this transition, we used an umbrella, to diffuse the light, increasing the size of light in relation to the subject.
  • As the background was fairly bright, we moved the model away from the wall. As the lights were now further away from the wall, much less of the light was hitting the wall.
  • Although the transition between light and shadow was softened with the umbrella, the shadows still remained very dark so we used a reflector to bounce some of the back into the shadows.
  • To create more depth to the image, we added another flashgun behind the model on the lefthand side. This created a highlight on her hair.
  • To guide the viewers eye into the pictures, we added a third flash at the back. To control this light, we wrapped a piece of black foam around the flashgun, which created a beam of light.


The final image isn’t going to win any prizes any time soon but hopefully this will have given you a taste for what can be done.

If you are interested in learning more about off-camera lighting, the website has a number of articles to guide you through the basics. I’m also anticipating starting a ‘strobist group’ in Sheffield, where those interested can meet up every month or so to practice taking photographs with off-camera flash. If you are interested, leave a comment on this post on the photosoc website

On a final note, if you are taking pictures, make sure you get a Flickr account, upload your shots and add your photos to our Flickr group so we can all share what we’re doing!



Studio Session

!EDIT! Sorry, I’ve got the time wrong, we will be meeting at 7 not 6! Sorry!

Tonight at 6pm, a few of us will be playing with PhotoSoc’s studio setup in one of the rooms in the Activity Centre. If you fancy trying your hand at portrait photography and would like to learn some new lighting techniques, feel free to come along and join in! If you dont have a camera, no need to worry, we can pass round mine. We’ll be meeting at 6 downstairs in the Activity Centre before heading to one of the rooms or if you cant find us, give me a call on 07920 88 77 60

Hopefully see some of you tonight!


Committee meetings


As we have the Annual General Meeting coming up in March where we elect a new committee, we’d like to invite you to our committee meetings. If you check out our page on the website, we will write a few words about each of our roles so you have a better idea of what we do.

If you think you’d like to be on the committee next year, or you would just like to see how the society is run, then please come along!

We meet every Monday 7pm in the Gallery Eye (upstairs in the union). We tend to have ourselves a nice cup of tea as well so bring a mug along with you if you’d like some!

We hope to see some of you there tomorrow!

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Lots of news!

Hello everyone!

Big apologies in advance for this long email, but it is important that you read all of it because there is lots of useful information for the next couple of weeks. Plus I’m feeling nice so I might put something jolly at the end of it…

This Thursday meeting

Unfortunately we’re not going to be able to do the camera tutorial this week, so we have postponed it until Thursday 4th November and we will send you an email with details about where and when nearer the time. So this week, we’re going to do a light-painting session on Thursday (21st) evening. If you’d like to come along, please bring warm clothes, a camera (if you have one) and a torch/flashgun to “paint” with. We’ll be meeting at 7pm around the Gallery area upstairs in the Union.

Halloween/disposable camera social

Next Thursday evening (28th October) we’re going to have a fancy dress bar crawl with disposable cameras for capturing the frivolity! We’re starting in Interval at 7:30pm and will be making our way to Lava Lounge via The Common Room, Frog & Parrot and The Wick at Both Ends. We’re also working on getting some special Halloweeny PhotoSoc cocktails made up for us – woop!
The fancy dress theme is simply whatever you want it to be! So get your gladrags on and your cameras out, and come join us for some drinks and fun!

Halloween/Bonfire Night competition

To complement the time of year (and our little social) we’re having a competition on the theme of Halloween and Bonfire Night. The 2 week competition will open on Monday 25th October and the deadline for entries will be at 5pm on Monday 8th November, with entries being uploaded to our Flickr competition group. If you’re not on Flickr yet, do sign up and upload your photos so that you can take part in the competition.
**Remember to have a look at the competition rules at the bottom of the group page before you submit anything…


Due to a general delay in the building work inside the Union, our darkroom is not yet ready, but we’re keeping an eye on its progress and will let you know when it’s ready for use.
Unfortunately, we also no longer have access to the darkroom in the Mappin Building as it has been relocated. But as I said, keep an eye on your emails for news about our darkroom in the Union.

Mentor Scheme

Due to popular demand, we are in the process of setting up a mentor scheme to create some links and contacts between photographers who are more experienced and those who are just starting out in photography. The aim is to get people talking and taking pictures by gaining confidence and experience from each other. We have put up a discussion on the website forums, so please register on the website so that you can sign up to be a mentor/mentee. Any problems posting to the forums, please let us know.

GIAG Pinhole Photography

We still have a few places left on our Pinhole Photography Give It A Go session this Thursday evening (21st) at 7pm in the Gallery Eye. If you’d like to learn how to make your own pinhole camera that you can take away with you at the end, head to the Union Box Office and get yourself a ticket! But hurry because they’re running out fast!

Phew! Congratulations for getting to the bottom! If you have any questions, drop us an email or post it onto the forums. There will be more detailed emails coming out a few days before each event, so keep a look out for those! And now, as promised, something jolly and amusing…

Learn from pros in your room!

This is an awesome new website set up with many professional photographers. You can sign on and “attend” classes in a massive range of topics covering photography,


Check out our Facebook group!


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