Case Study in Using the Sun as Your Rim Light

When you’re on location scrambling to get your shot, remember to try shooting more or less directly into the sun. I know that a lot of you are going to scoff at this, but consider this photograph.


Notice how putting the subjects in between me and the sun, I am creating a nice rim light on the side of the boys face. This will help separate your subject from the background and helps give the photograph that 3D “pop”.

Of course when you do this, you’ll need to supply a healthy dose of fill light as your subject will likely be in total shadow, so bring along a couple speedlights and an umbrella.

The Napa Photographer

About The Napa Photographer

I am a Napa California area photographer specializing in portrait and wedding photography. I would describe my style as “environmental portraiture”, I like to shoot on location and try to seek out the most interesting backgrounds.

I am the organizer of a local group, I provide bi-weekly lighting and portrait workshops, you can find my group at:

My main photography site is:

I use a Canon 5D and about a dozen Canon 550EX’s triggered with Pocket Wizard Flex TT5′s.

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