We all have our dreams, some are simple while others are complex, buried with the overwhelming mountain of hurdles. I began my creative career in the one of the most complex industries; music. The business of music is just like any other business, except it’s competitive and hard to navigate as a poor teenager who lives in their parent’s basement. But, I survived for a few years with the scars to prove it. We toured and recorded albums, yet never seemed to make it where we always dreamed to be. One minute we had a breakthrough, the next we took ten steps back. I often think what was to blame or who was to blame. But, I chock it up to timing. We happened to choose one of the worst times in the history of music to succeed. Free music was the new thing and the sales of compacts discs were crashing at an alarming rate. I often felt like my band was running on a treadmill, covered in sweat, yet never making any big leaps toward fame, fortune and my dream; to be my own boss.
If you’re new to studio portraits, there’s just so much to learn about the light. Also, you have a choice between strobes/speedlights and continuous LED lights. If you can’t decide where to start, the latest video from Joe Edelman could be helpful and get you on the right track.
In this video, Joe breaks down the differences between these two types of lighting. You’ll learn their main uses, and also why it’s good to use one or the other in different situations.
In this tutorial we will be going over how to create gorgeous in-camera flared effects that can add a lot of depth and interest to a simple portrait image. To do this we will be using a glass prism which can be found on any number of online retail sites. The glass prisms are generally used for school science experiments so they’re readily available and very inexpensive.
25mm x 100mm glass prism on Amazon link here
The prisms are very easy to use out on location as you simply hold them in front of the lens and shoot away. If you’re looking to use them in a studio environment though there are a few key things to bear in mind to maximise the flared effect that creates that signature look.
Do you use gels to add color to your photos? Jay P. Morgan shows you four different ways to use them, but with a twist – he focuses on adding color only to the shadows. By using gels, he achieves the desired effect in camera. Some of these four methods can work for you too, and they’re great ways to minimize the time you spend editing the photos.
The whole “one light” thing always seems to be a popular topic. And it’s not really surprising. Every day new people are getting into flash. Buying just a single light and learning to master it is the usual recommendation. And it’s a great way to start. The next logical step before buying more lights is to try out a couple of different modifiers. And what better modifier than a beauty dish?
Photographer Joel Grimes likes working with beauty dishes. So much so that he even put his name on one. The Westcott Rapid Box, designed by Joel, isn’t exactly the cheapest beauty dish out there. But, it does illustrate the principles. And while you won’t get the exact same look, you can get pretty close with any similarly sized beauty dish. In this video, Joel shows us how he likes to use it.
“Natural light photographers” is a strange term. To some it’s a badge of honour, stating that they either don’t need to use flash to get what they want, or that they simply don’t like “the look of flash”. To others, it’s generally derogatory, suggesting that somebody only uses natural light simply because they don’t know how to use flash. But both are excellent options for lighting up a subject.
Calgary based photographer Nathan Elson utilises both in this comparison of shots in the studio and outdoors using flash and natural light. This behind the scenes video posted by Nathan just goes to show that no matter which is available, there’s ways ways to bend it to your will.
When creating studio portraits, it’s good to make the subject stand out from the background. Most photographers know this, but many still make the mistake and don’t backlight their models properly (or at all). In this short video, photographer Manny Ortiz will show you three easy ways to backlight your model and make it separate from the background using speedlights.
If you haven’t used color gels so far, in this video you’ll see some quick tips how to introduce color gels into your portrait work. Photographer Manny Ortiz gives you a suggestion of the setting, and also a quick tip how to make the best out of color gels.
If you’ve only got one flash, or you’re about to dive into flash, and aren’t sure how many lights you need, or which lights to get in order to shoot portraits, then you’ll probably want to watch this video from Joe Edelman.
In it, you’ll see that it’s really not about how many lights you have, but how they are used. Or rather, how one light is used, in this case.
If you’re relatively new to photography, studio lighting can seem like a whole other world.
If you’re like me when I started with studio lighting, you probably have a pretty decent camera and have seen a noticeable improvement in the quality of your photography as you have learned to work with natural light.
But sooner or later you’ll realize that if you really want to progress as a photographer – you’re going to have to learn to effectively use artificial light.
The good news is that getting started with studio lighting can be really easy, fun and you can do it for less than $100 in gear!
The first studio light photograph that I learned how to take was a one-light studio portrait – so if you’re interested in learning studio lighting, lets start there.