Utah Salt Flats: Photographing Capoeira With Natural Light And Strobe

Last time we featured a video from Mike Tittel, he was showcasing his edgy lighting look on some female tennis players. This time he has taken his photography team to the salt flats of Utah to photography the Brazilian sport Capoeira. For this shoot, Mike pulls out a few Profoto 7Bs with 2x3' gridded softboxes for many of the shots. However it's his natural lit shots that really grabbed my attention which he lit using the very helpful 4x6 California Sunbounce to fill his subjects. After the video, head over to Mike Tittel's Website to check out more of his work and then read how Mike lit these shots in his own words below.

I'm a huge believer in shooting personal work and this was one of the largest self-funded portfolio shots I've done. We used the 4x6 California Sunbouce quite a bit on this shoot. I am a huge fan of the standard silver/white--especially the silver side since it is punchier and enables us to throw light quite a ways. For some of the pulled back, elevated shots I used only natural light as I was really drawn to the shadows on the salt. The other set-ups were virtually the same - 2 Profoto 7Bs with 2x3' gridded softboxes behind the subject with a 3rd head on a combo stand with a soft white beauty dish up front for fill. This is a favorite technique of mine and I love using battery packs like the 7B for the freedom they allow. For a few of the shots earlier in the day we did use a 12'x12' with 1-stop silk to help control the light. Here are a few of the shots that show different lighting techniques below.

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Patrick Hall's picture

Another great thing about this shoot is seeing Mike scrim off the entire sun.  When you need a large area for your subjects to play in nothing works better than scrimming the sun.  Anyone else used any of these techniques?

... yes I do for broadcast filming too!... Damn I wish I had a location like that in the UK!!

Sean Shimmel's picture

Simultaneously similar and utterly different:

Take a peek at Joel Grimes' interpretation.


Reminds me of the encouraging truth that our personal vision/interpretation is always a fresh, legitimate and valuable take on a subject, even if it's been shot before

I loved watching the "dancing." Seemed like it worked best as a video. 

Man that looked like a long day- seems like he got a ton of variety. Anyone know what the assignment was?

Patrick Hall's picture

It was personal work for his own portfolio

Great stuff here, location, gear, techniques, subjects. 

Oh My Goddddddddddd!!!!!!!!!!
The best photoshoting I have ever seen!!!!!!!!!
No words!!!! No coments!!!!!!
Very very very best!

Wil Koetzler

Sick video! Incredible images and such good quality on the BTS video. I'm a fan!

Kent Meister's picture

That was freaking cool.  Great use of the natural light and California Sunbounce, I'd love to put one of those to use!