Shooting on a clean white backdrop can be one of the more complex in-studio lighting setups around. Properly exposing for full lengths while giving your models room to work can require four or more extra lights and considerable amount of setup time. While taking the time to take care of the details is important for getting the perfect image and saving yourself hours of retouching on the back end, sometimes you just want to get a nice clean background without the hours of prep.
As a photographer, my skill set is constantly put to the test. In most cases, I’m handed an idea on a slab of wood and the mission is to hand that idea translated to a tangible artifact back to my client on a silver platter. It’s never an easy process, but it’s a part of my job.
For many, the 7’ parabolic umbrella seems like a one-trick pony. The textbook move of sandwiching the camera between the subject and the light for an edgy, high-key look is quickly growing old. In this video, commercial photographer Joel Grimes shows a different way of using the 7’ parabolic to create soft, high-key images best suited for beauty photography.
Joey L. is a photographer best known for his stunning personal work creating portraits of the peoples of Ethiopia, India, Indonesia, and other exotic places of the world. He uses studio lights on-location to achieve his unique and dramatic look for his portraits of these exotic people. Consequently, he is frequently asked about what lighting gear he takes with him for those kinds of shoots. Recently, Joey made a video and blog post outlining three major options for portable studio lighting for photographers with varying budgets who want Joey L.-esque studio lighting on the go.
A great portion of my business is spent on architectural photography. My technique involves using a mixture of ambient light, flash, and tungsten hot lights blended and masked together in post to create well lit images that are time consuming to shoot and often frustrating to edit. I'm always looking for other techniques and resources to incorporate that will allow me to work more efficiently and/or improve my images. This week I found such a technique right under my nose.
Until now, High Speed Sync (HSS) has been a luxury feature designed exclusively for speedlights (and select new strobes), allowing you to shoot using strobes at shutter speeds previously unavailable. However, announced this morning, Profoto has enabled High Speed Sync solutions to their beloved B1 studio strobe, and best of all? It's available now as a simple firmware update.
Artificial lighting can be overwhelming, there are thousands of options to modify one single light source and there are dozens of companies that claim they have the best product and best bang for your buck. Regardless, photography equipment is expensive and I know I'd rather not waste money on a gimmick product when the same result could be achieved with just the right strobe placement or accessory.
Many of us know what it feels like to have or want to do a strobed on-location portrait without the benefit of an assistant. In fact, many of the portraits that I believe to be my best were done without an assistant and only with one strobe. It's all about good strategy and proper planning gear/creative-wise. This video by the Slanted Lens does an excellent job preparing you on how to do this kind of shoot effectively. Read below to learn more.
I have been a fan and a friend of Benjamin Von Wong for years. I have seen him turn tech employees into athletic gods and seen him schmooze with the police while on a 13 hour photoshoot deep in a foggy forest. In my eyes, the genius that is buried in Von Wong's creative mind can do anything, and he always knows it. Well, little did I know, the man who once chained a model to a shipwreck to get the perfect shot, often doubts himself, much like all of us.
I have to say, it's been a blast seeing where Carli Davidson's passion for dogs has taken her, starting way back in 2012 when I first featured her on Fstoppers, and again last year with the release of her book Shake. Today marks the official release of her new book, Shake Puppies, and she somehow managed to create a book of cute that surpasses that of her original printed piece.
Las Vegas based commercial photographer Michael Herb recently got his hands on Westcott's 59 inch Zeppelin to test out on location in the Nevada desert. The photoshoot featured three models in an apocalyptic theme at a salt lake bed. In the behind the scenes video he shows just how difficult it can be to put together the Zeppelin on the separately purchased speedring. Even with the problems at set-up Michael still quite enjoyed shooting with the Zeppelin and plans to use it in the future.
Last year Fstoppers threw its very first live photography workshop in the Bahamas and world class food and drink photographer Rob Grimm was one of the instructors. I was able to sit in on a bit of Rob's class and I learned a ton about photographing drinks. We just got our new order of FlashDiscs in and I decided to try a shot of my own using the new modifiers.
Over the years Yongnuo has built quite a reputation as an affordable and competitive product to the big names. Now nearly a year after their last trigger update, Yongnuo is announcing its latest version the RF605 trigger, which comes with some nice features that may pursuade you to upgrade if you are holding on to the old versions.