Hard light is created by a very small source, such as the sun. It has a sharp edge, and it’s not very soft. Soft light is created by a large source, such as an overcast sky or a large diffuser.
The intensity of hard light can be altered by changing its size relative to your subject. If you want more intensity, move the light closer to your subject. If you want less intensity, move the light farther away from your subject.
The intensity of soft light can be altered by changing its size relative to your subject, but there are other ways to change its intensity as well. For example, if you want more intensity in the shadows of an outdoor scene where clouds are covering the sun’s rays, try moving into shade yourself or waiting until the clouds pass by and the sun comes out again so that it can shine through those clouds onto your subject once again.
Last modified: September 20, 2022