Use this simple two-light setup for gorgeous and consistent portrait lighting

Aug 24, 2021

Dunja Djudjic

Dunja Djudjic is a multi-talented artist based in Novi Sad, Serbia. With 15 years of experience as a photographer, she specializes in capturing the beauty of nature, travel, and fine art. In addition to her photography, Dunja also expresses her creativity through writing, embroidery, and jewelry making.

Use this simple two-light setup for gorgeous and consistent portrait lighting

Aug 24, 2021

Dunja Djudjic

Dunja Djudjic is a multi-talented artist based in Novi Sad, Serbia. With 15 years of experience as a photographer, she specializes in capturing the beauty of nature, travel, and fine art. In addition to her photography, Dunja also expresses her creativity through writing, embroidery, and jewelry making.

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When shooting portraits in a studio with artificial lighting, the possibilities are endless. But if you’re looking for something simple, beginner-friendly, yet very effective, look no further. In this video, Manny Ortiz shows you one of his favorite beauty lighting setups. It uses two lights, a single light stand, and gives you beautiful and consistent lighting in every shot.

For the setup, Manny used this C-stand from Savage and two Westcott FJ400 strobes, both triggered remotely. Above the model’s head, he added a 36″ octabox to the strobe. Below her chin, he modified the light with a 1 x 4 stripbox.

There are a few advantages of this setup. First of all, it’s pretty simple and minimal, yet provides great results, especially for beauty portraits. Then, it gives you consistent lighting on the model. You can move around the studio, change backdrops, or even use this setup outdoors, and always have the same lighting on the model’s face. You can also control the brightness of the backdrop by moving the model and the lights away from it.

Of course, you can use a reflector instead of the bottom light with the stripbox. It’s a cheaper option and it works. In fact, many photographers use it. But Manny notes that another benefit of his two-light setup is that it gives you more control over the light than a reflector does.

I personally like this setup because it’s beginner-friendly. I haven’t had much chance to shoot in a studio, and if I ever do, this kind of setup that would be among the first ones for me to try. Have you already used it? Do you find it useful?

[My #1 FOOLPROOF Beauty Lighting setup for STUNNING Portraits! | Manny Ortiz]

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Dunja Djudjic

Dunja Djudjic

Dunja Djudjic is a multi-talented artist based in Novi Sad, Serbia. With 15 years of experience as a photographer, she specializes in capturing the beauty of nature, travel, and fine art. In addition to her photography, Dunja also expresses her creativity through writing, embroidery, and jewelry making.

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2 responses to “Use this simple two-light setup for gorgeous and consistent portrait lighting”

  1. Reed Radcliffe Avatar
    Reed Radcliffe

    It always amazes me when I see these “beginner” setup articles. What “beginner” has a freakin’ strip box and an octabox? Westcott strobes? A C-stand? C’mon. You have all these things and no tripod? Is that what makes a photographer a beginner?

    When I started many years ago I bought a bunch of used light stands and STUs along with a portable background stand for $150. I found that I could take excellent portraits with just two Yongnuo Speedlights ($40 bucks each) and two STUs mounted on those cheap stands. It took a while to figure out the optimal way, but that was a beginner setup.

    Your beginner setup costs a heck of a lot more with $1100 bucks worth of strobes, $300 worth of modifiers. Just leave the word “beginner” out, because all this is is an advertisement for your B&H links.

  2. John Beatty Avatar
    John Beatty

    neat gear. But, have to go with what Mr. Radcliffe posted. Most very good portraits are done with two lights. Go from there.