Saturday, April 12, 2008

TAW #9: Studio Lighting

Aly-6, originally uploaded by photogeek21.

Got a little more practice in 'the Studio' this month setting up for a Senior Portrait session. It was also the first time using a new grey background I got of Ebay. (I was really getting bored with my typical low key and high key portaits)
This was a 3 light setup, Using my big photogenic studio strobes as the main and hair light. The main light shot through a 24x36" softbox placed about 3 ft from the subject. The hairlight (which is missing her hair and hitting her back in this shot) was about 10' back. for the 3rd and final light, I used my old vivitar 283 flash, put it on a stand with a bout a 6" white snoot to selectively light the background. the white snoot helped soften the edges of the light. While this is a very basic technique, It's my first time trying it and I'm satisfied with the results I got. I think it really adds variety to any background by changing the distance between the flash and the background you can vary the size of the 'halo' also adding gels would add a variety of color to your shots - all with a single background.

The final formula thats been working in my studio is putting background about 12-15' behind the subject to prevent too much light from the main spilling on the background - that way I have control of how the background looks, I'm getting about a 3 stop difference between the background and the subject in this setup which will let me shoot low key or blast it with a big strobe for high key. Another important thing with the distance, is that it lets you throw it out of focus to hide any wrinkles you may have, although with my current 85mm portrait lens this limits me to about F5.6 more than that and I better get the Iron out....

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