How to mimic sunlight in the studio – The Lighting Series #3

Dec 8, 2018

Stefan Kohler

Stefan Kohler is a full-time retoucher. He’s from Germany and likes bacon. In the last years, he built up a broad community around his retouching classes at the Infinite tool’s website. You can follow his work oninstagram.

How to mimic sunlight in the studio – The Lighting Series #3

Dec 8, 2018

Stefan Kohler

Stefan Kohler is a full-time retoucher. He’s from Germany and likes bacon. In the last years, he built up a broad community around his retouching classes at the Infinite tool’s website. You can follow his work oninstagram.

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While this picture has kept me busy for a long time; it’s actually pretty easy!

The goal was to create a summary picture. But it was December, and we shot inside the studio. Here’s how we did it.

Nikon D800, 85mm f1.8 @f8, ISO 100, 1/200s

The lighting series is a comprehensive lighting guide. We talk about flash photography, lighting, posing, color, and walk you through a series of lighting setups. Some will be simple, some complex, but in the end, they are all tools to add to your photography toolbox. Here is a complete list of the lighting tutorials.

Lighting equipment

  • 1x normal reflector with color foil (1/4 CTO) on a 500Ws monoblock
  • 2x Striplight with color foils (cyan and green) on 500Ws monoblocks
  • 1 reflector (foam core board)

Lighting setup

I looked at a lot of pictures and I have to say: sun-drenched models against a perfect blue sky aren’t that common. But, there’s nothing like a challenge. What I did notice was the light in the bathroom after a shower: it often has a color gradient, and the sunlight coming in is extremely hard.

It’s something you can recreate relatively easily in the studio.

The background effect was created with two transverse striplights: the sunlight is simulated by a hard-hitting normal reflector. A reflector plate made of styrofoam brings some light back into the shadows, which brings some more definition to your model’s hair.

To give the model a beachy feel, we spritzed her with water from a well-washed perfume atomizer. The more that you pump, the larger the droplets will be.

The Individual Light Sources

The main light

The reflector

The background

Color Mixing With Light

To illustrate the effects of color mixing more clearly, I have used blue and yellow slides. In the photo, the gels were cyan and green.

No overlap

Downloads

For the pictures in the article, we used the light simulation Set.A.Light 3D. You can download the lighting setup and try everything for yourself. You can also download this series as a free ebook.

If you’ve never worked with Set.a.Light before, you should give it a try! There is also a free demo version on the website, which you can use to open these setups.

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Stefan Kohler

Stefan Kohler

Stefan Kohler is a full-time retoucher. He’s from Germany and likes bacon. In the last years, he built up a broad community around his retouching classes at the Infinite tool’s website. You can follow his work oninstagram.

Join the Discussion

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4 responses to “How to mimic sunlight in the studio – The Lighting Series #3”

  1. Marco Peixoto Avatar
    Marco Peixoto

    And how to make it still look like Fake Studio Light :)

    1. Mehmet Kocaman Avatar
      Mehmet Kocaman

      Marco Peixoto you wouldnot be sure if you havent see backstage .

    2. Marco Peixoto Avatar
      Marco Peixoto

      Trust me I would. It looks like Movie Lighting simulating outdoors. In fact its pretty noticeable.

    3. Paganator Avatar
      Paganator

      It’s lacking light from the sky. In the real world, the sky would add some slightly blue light that’s very diffuse shining from above. Bouncing blue light on the ceiling might work.