Behind The Scenes Of A Stylized Tennis Portrait

Mike Tittel takes us behind the scenes of his most recent photoshoot at Salt Lake Swimming and Tennis Club. This video is beautifully filmed and edited and I'm sure you will take away some great concepts and lighting ideas.

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Richard Grebby's picture

how do they get the skin to shin like it does?

Hard lighting (rather than soft) is very specular thus creating shiny skin and it is also very good for defining edges of the body / muscles especially when placed behind the talent.

@ Richard - Getting the skin to look that way is the combination of the lighting used and a skilled make-up artist. Paula (my MUA) has a great trick. This will sound crazy but she first applied spray-on sunscreen (the cheap kind you get from Walgreens) and then misted the player with a combination of water/glycerin where we wanted sweat. For the shot used as the title (the one you see before pressing play) we used two 2'x3' Profoto soft boxes w/ 60 degree grids on them as rim lights with a 22" soft white beauty dish as the key light. You can see the rough set up at 1:10 in the video. This is a great way to enhance the sheen.

For those interested we have one other BTS video available at

More info can also be found on my blog:

Thanks for watching.


There's this olive oil hairspray that some people like to use to make the skin shiny. I forget the name, but it comes in a green can.

Very nice looking BTS. I bet the model got tired of serving the ball.

Mike looks good like your style. I'll check the others on Vimeo

wow, interesting shoot and was given great style, i think ive got a new love for tennis :-)