Every once in a while I get bored or I want to try something different in my work. This night I called over my good friend Chris Clayton to take some photos. I wanted to see if I put a black background up could I easily knock him out of the background using Photoshop.
Well the answer was an astounding yes. But the key to making this happen was making sure I had enough of a rim light to separate him from the background. So this is how I did it.
My main light was a Shoot Thru Umbrella with an Alien Bee 800. I exposed this light for an aperture of f8 @1/200th. I then had two bare bulbs placed directly on each side and exposed for an aperture of f11. This one stop difference created the hard rim light and forced the separation of Chris from the background. I knew this would help me in Photoshop to knock him out easier.
To keep the light from flaring my camera, I placed a Gobo in front of each light. This allowed my camera to stay clear from any light that could hit my sensor and wash out the photo.
To add a little more fill on the bottom side of Chris, I added a ring light as a light source. This light I only exposed at f5.6 which is one stop less than the Shoot Thru umbrella. I just needed this to fill in and not be to hard of a light source or blow out the white tank top he was wearing.
After all of this, I went into photoshop and tweaked colors and contrast. Did a little dodging and burning and placed Chris in front of a wall photo that I had.