Week #2: Silhouette

To be shot and submitted between Sunday, Jan 4 and Sunday, Jan 11 (noon, Eastern)

It’s silhouette week! This great lighting method is always a crowd-pleaser, and it’s a lot of fun to go out and capture.

Note that a silhouette is NOT the same as a shadow! Wikipedia defines silhouette as an image represented by a solid shape of a single color, its edging matching the outlines of the subject. In photographic terms, it’s when a subject is completely “blacked out” by a brighter light source behind it. Apparently the French call this method “Contre-jour,” which sounds all fancy, so I think we’ll call it that from now on. Remember, the basic method is simple: “shoot against the light.” In other words, the source of light (the sun, the moon, a lamp) should bebehind the subject you are photographing.

Tips and Tuts for this week:


Need some inspiration? Check out our previous Silhouette album from 2014 on Facebook, or see these galleries of great silhouette shots.

Extra Credit: “Use Artificial Lighting”

For those of you with a studio setup, or access to any kind of off-camera lighting (hint: even a floor lamp works!), you can set up your scene manually and tell your own unique story, without the use of the sun. You might find it helpful to shut out all other light in the scene, except for the single light source you’ve set up.

Again, it is not necessary to work in this Extra Credit piece. It’s extra credit!