The test renders are completed. The posing is not up to snuff, it was just for speed. Hair is also omitted this time for sake of rendering speed.
Version 1: Uses the exact original light set-up, just with a character added. Light can still only enter from behind her so she is illuminated only with the left over indirect light.
Version 2: To enhance the figure I moved the desk lamp closer to her and I turned it on. Adding this additional key light source to the scene means there is generally more light to bounce around so I had to increase the intensities of my indirect lights as well to compensate.
Version 3 and 4 are just interlaced comparison between Version 1 and 2 for quick reference.
I personally do not believe there is a particular way all humans should look. I never work with a “result” in mind. For me, both versions are adequately lit. The adequacy of the lighting depends on the internal logic of the given situation and not on any pre-conceived notions. Version 1 is dark, but that doesn’t mean inadequate. Adding a figure to Version 1 doesn’t change the fact that the all of the light is still entering from behind her head. It is my opinion that she blends into the background exactly as she should. In real life we don’t have a special halo of lights around us to make us “pop” in photographs just because we are in a dimly lit room, we receive the same lighting our environment receives. Real life doesn’t apologize, so why should I? I’d say Version 1 has a touch of mystery or sadness, loneliness maybe due to the dark and indirect nature of the light.
Story: I imagine in Version 1 that the wife found a disturbing text on my phone this morning but didn’t say anything. Instead she came to the office to ambush me while I was away at lunch. She’s taken on a passive aggressive posture, seemingly aloof and deliberately sneaky. She wanted to catch me off guard. My experience tells me that women don’t often do things without a reason. She could’ve turned on a lamp but chose against it because she knew she’d disappear into the shadows forcing me to come and find her. I think I’m in some trouble. She has the element of surprise.
Version 2 sees the addition of an interior light source. Naturally, it is easier to view the items in the room when it is lit more intensely, this includes the Vicky character. Rather than to add a contrived halo of lights around the figure to the omission of everything else, I simply employed one of the available light props and lit the character as well as the scene. The key light from the lamp seems to strike her from a lower angle, which we know has certain psychological implications of its own. It also casts a nice silhouette on the far right wall. What I find is that the scene still retains a small degree of mystery even with this added light. Still Version 2 is most certainly happier seeming, less depressing at least compared to Version 1. It is a different mood altogether than Version 1.
Story: I’d say in this version she still found a disturbing text, but freaked out on me in the morning before I left for work. After some time to rethink the argument I come back from lunch to find her waiting for me in my office with an apology. She turned on the desk light this time because she wanted me to see her right away. She chose to remove her element of surprise. She loves me, and she knows she can trust me. At least a little bit…... at least for now!!