There are plenty of fantastic DIY softbox solutions, but this one is definitely something I haven’t seen before. To make it, you’ll need an old bicycle wheel. It doesn’t only make a great softbox, but it looks really cool, too. So, if that old bicycle is just collecting dust in the garage, maybe it’s time to repurpose it. In this video, Prickly Sauce will show you how.
Mirrorless cameras and high-power speedlights have reduced the size of gear, just like they promised. But the softbox still remains the largest piece and takes up a lot of space. Vincent Palma and Vilhelm von Platen wanted to change this, so they created Sundisc. It’s a light, compact and ultra-portable reversible softbox that fits in your camera bag and that you can carry everywhere. You can attach it directly to your speedlight, and it also doubles as a reflector with both warm and cool light.
When it comes to setting up flash for a portrait, one might usually grab a big octabox or beauty dish. Normally, we wouldn’t consider something like a strip softbox. Strip softboxes are typically relegated to rim light duties. But they can also be extremely effective as a main light source.
In this Profoto Tiny Talk, photographer Neil van Niekerk talks us through how he uses his gridded strip softboxes for lighting portraits. He describes it as the most powerful tool he has both on location and in the studio. And, indeed, it is an extremely versatile modifier.
By now, you probably know that you should sandbag your gear. I mean, who would want their gear flying on their face when they talk about sand bags?
But sometimes the wind is just too fierce. Not only for a light stand but for any sort of modifier. In the movie below, German photographers Flash bros set out to shoot a portrait. Only the wind was a bit too strong even to hold a Profoto B1 500 TTL strobe with a small Profoto 2′ Octa. You can actually see how the wind drags both gear and assistant away.
Flash modifier comparisons can be extremely useful things. Without having to get up out of the comfort of our chair, we can very quickly and easily see how different shapes and sizes of modifier affect how light falls on our subject. Here’s one we discovered by photographer Michael Quack and the team at Visual Pursuit comparing a very wide array of Hensel modifiers.
Hensel modifiers aren’t exactly inexpensive, but if you want the best quality, you generally have to pay the highest prices. While you may not be specifically looking at buying Hensel gear, it’s still a useful comparison. With the subject, lights and photographer remaining the same for each shot, you can quickly get a feel for the differences that modifier design can make in your image.
If you are using LED panels, there is a good chance you are using them bare, or with a diffusion panel. If you need a bigger light source that the size of your panels, there are no pre-made solutions.
If you are using a spot LED (like the 120T from aputure), you can use “regular” softboxes, but there is really no solution that can further extend an LED panel.
One of the questions I see pop up often through various portrait groups on Facebook is “what softbox do I buy?”. After they settle on an octabox, it’s invariably followed up with “How big should I go?”. Personally, when it comes to Octaboxes, I’ve always been of the belief that the bigger the better. But, that’s just because I like nice big soft light. And, if you’re using a flash capable of filling it, why not?
In this video from photographer Francisco Joel Hernandez, we’re shown how they measure up in a direct comparison. Using 18″, 38″ and 60″ we get an overview of how size affects how the light falls on your subject. We also get a look into some of the more practical reasons why you might choose one size octabox over another.
Shooting outside in bright sunlight scares many photographers. I always see people saying to not go out and shoot portraits when the sun’s high in the sky. To wait until golden hour and shoot in the sunset, or only go out on a cloudy day.
Well, I think that’s nonsense. There’s so much you can do with bright contrasty sunlight. In this video from Shutterbug Magazine, photographer James Patrick shows us five great tips for working with it.
Santa Claus has you spoiled this year by offering you the studio of your dreams? A kit of flashes, a backdrop support and even more rolls of paper? It only remains to push the furniture in your living room out of the way to turn it into studio worthy of the name!
A single point hurts you in spite of all the new material, you do not know what light modifier to choose?
Beauty dish, softbox, stripbox, reflector bowl, umbrellas of all kinds and sizes, flash ring, etc… It is a bit like choosing a new car, many choices but which really matches my expectations?
No worries, I’d be your dealer today to guide you by showing you the difference in all these modifiers!
Many times photographers think they are held back by lack of gear. However, having just one strobe and one softbox is more than you need to create so many looks and apply your photography to so many subjects.
Photographer Tony Corbell uses a single light and a softbox to show ten different lighting setups and applications.
Now this is not your usual 3 minutes video, it is a full 22 minutes of cubical distraction. The amount of tips that Tony casually throws is amazing.
Tony uses a big Bowens Gemini 500Pro monoblock with a Lumiair 80×100 softbox. But the same principles apply also when you are using smaller and cheaper lights light strobes. you would have to either raise the ISO or open up the aperture for a softer look.