Of all the different lighting conditions that I can use, overcast front lighting is the one that I consider being the safest. This is because overcast front light illuminates most everything evenly. Overcasting front light is good for white balancing since overall illumination is balanced. The softness of this light results in more natural-looking renderings and it also eliminates the contrast problems that a sunny day creates. 

Some of my clients have a preconceived notion of how a color should look. Holding the color swatch up to the print will usually not produce the expected result; "the colors don't match!", is a typical response I get. I can go into color theory, monitor calibration, gamma, but it's typically received with the deer in the headlight gaze. Instead of pulling out the before and after images as to proof, I am usually spot-on, I chose to go with a nice, and very safe, overcast lighting setup.

As for me, I prefer the high contrast, and more dramatic scenes. I understand basic color theory and how light and color react to each other. The work that I am most proud of, and has been recognized by my peers, has not been by playing it safe.  I can guarantee  that the color swatch will change colors with every light source you view it under. That color, on that color swatch, will not look that way on your building.

So, if you want to play it safe, I can recommend Peter Guthrie's 0902 Overcast HDRI.

Overcast HDRI by  Peter Guthrie

Overcast HDRI by Peter Guthrie

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