This section is from the book "Complete Self-Instructing Library Of Practical Photography", by J. B. Schriever. Also available from Amazon: Complete Self-Instructing Library Of Practical Photography.
The Lamp In Use. In Illustration No. 90a is shown the lamp in use, with the subject in position. We also show in this illustration the finished picture made by the light. The lamp is located five feet from the side, and slightly in front of the subject, the top of the cabinet being eight feet from the floor.
672a. The diffusing screen is hinged at the base of the cabinet, permitting of the tilting of this screen to any angle desired. The more perpendicular you have the screen the more contrast you will produce, and vice versa. An angle of about 45° gives the best results.
6726. The cabinet is made adjustable, being clamped to the post. By means of thumb screws it may very easily be raised or lowered at will. For children's portraits you would naturally drop the cabinet a trifle, yet this is not necessary, for by dropping the angle of the diffusing screen you naturally lower the light. At the same time you flatten it somewhat, which latter is not at all objectionable for children's pictures.
672c. The only accessory necessary for making pictures under these conditions is a light controller for cutting off all
Illustration No. gob. (In the Studio of the Future) See Paragraph No. 672c..
The Studio of the Future. 364g strong light, as shown in the illustration. The absence of the usual accessories - screens, backgrounds, etc. - gives the studio an air of refinement and more the appearance of a living-room, which causes the subject to feel more at ease, and also has considerable influence in obtaining natural expression; and above all, it enables one to produce results individually their own style.
672d. The principal consideration that requires the careful attention of the operator is the locating of the source of illumination in the proper place to produce the desired effect. With this accomplished the rest is simple. As the strength of electric light remains very constant, all you need to consider is the size and speed of the plate you are using, and the speed of the lens employed. A few trials will demonstrate the exposure required to a nicety.
672e. The three views of the room taken from different points, as shown in Illustration No. 90b gives one a fair idea of the furnishings, etc., of the studio. As you will observe, any portion of this room is suitable for making a picture. The subject, when ushered into the room, after glancing about for a few minutes will naturally assume, of their own accord, some characteristic attitude which will appear graceful. It may be a standing position by the heavy portieres, or sitting in a cozy, comfortable chair, or lounging on a tete, or in the den; it may be standing by the library table, looking over some specimen pictures, or, perhaps, in the act of conversation. If a child subject, they will naturally wend their way to a cozy corner, or some place where there happens to be a small chair or stool; or if one prefers a standing position of them, by placing some small toys on the rail along the wall, they will unconsciously become interested in the toys, thus giving the artist an opportunity to obtain characteristic and pleasing pictures.
673. The lamp and cabinet, being movable, can be wheeled to any portion of the room desired; so it makes no difference where your subjects are located, you can place the lamp to give you any effect you want. The greatest secret of the success of pictures made under these conditions lies in the ability of the artist. He must usher his subject to a place la the room where he feels they will appear natural and at ease. With this done, he must determine instantly what effect he is after. The unlimited facilities for breaking up his background gives him every opportunity for composing his pictures as he wishes. He can use blank space for his background, or admit a portion of the drapery, or, better still, add a picture or two in just the right place to balance his space and complete his composition.
674. With a little study and care pictures can be made under these conditions which would be impossible to produce under the skylight, for while any lighting effects may be obtained, one has the additional advantage of making pictures amid home surroundings, which are so much different from the commercial picture that they are readily appreciated.
675. Illustrations Nos. 90c, 90d and 90e were made in different parts of this room. An 8x10 rapid plate was used, and the exposure given ranged from one second for the child picture to three seconds for the adult. The lamp being portable was moved about to suit the requirements.
Illustration No. 90c
Illustration No. 90d. Portraiture. (In the Studio of the Future).
See Paragraph No. 675.
Illustration No. 90e. Child Portraiture..
(In the Studio of the Future)
Sec Paragraph No. 675.