You don't need a ton of gear to produce dramatic portraits. By using focal length and lighting to your advantage you really can add so much more power to your images.
The guys over at Westcott are back once again with another insightful video featuring commercial photographer and educator Joel Grimes. The first thing Grimes explains is how he likes to use a wide-angle lens in the range of 24-28mm which may not be a traditional focal length for portraiture, but we see in the images he creates how using something so wide can actually help enhance the physique of his male subject. It should be pointed out that this effect may not be the most flattering for some body shapes so although this is a great tip, use it wisely.
The video goes on to show how minor adjustments to the collapsible beauty dish used can add drama as Grimes raises the light over the model to get that sweet spot with the shadows. In the final set up we see how the addition of two strip lights with egg crates on the front can really help to not only give the image more dimension but also allows a black suit to stand off a black background with ease.
I always find it fascinating to watch fellow photographers on a shoot and Grimes really does explain well his thought process while he is working. It's great to hear why he is adjusting the powers and the reasons behind the decision to move lights. It doesn't matter if you're just starting out or have been shooting a while, this video is a must watch for those who want to add drama to their pictures with a few quick and effective setups.