Chiaroscuro, is an Italian term that refers to the intense contrast of light (chiar) and dark (oscuro) in art, famously used in the paintings of Rembrandt or Caravaggio to create a strong and dramatic mood. It is also referred to as ‘clair obscur’ or ‘extreme low key’.  This style of photography, with its strong and bold contrasts between light and dark areas in a photograph, is often well suited for portraits and still life or simply to give a scene the illusion of being three-dimensional. It can add depth and a more mysterious atmosphere as it creates impact and contrast between highlights and shadows in a photo.

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How to achieve artistic chiaroscuro lighting in photography by Taya Ivanova

Decoding chiaroscuro: how to shoot glorious clair obscur photos by Adam Welch

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