High key high contrast lighting setup

Hello there,

I'm looking for some advice on how to achieve high contrast high key head and 3/4 body shots (see attached images from recent Saint Laurent ad campaign).

I'm a graphic designer with 12 years experience by trade but have been doing semi-pro exterior / local area shoots for the past few years. So whilst I'm well versed on the fundamentals of photography, studio lighting is very much new to me.

Obviously I'll shoot raw and much of the look will be crafted in post production via lightroom and photoshop, but I'm keen to get as close a result in camera as possible.

I have uploaded a crude sketch of what I'm thinking of doing. I have a 5D mkIV and plan on renting a 70-200mm 2.8. I also own a 100mm macro 2.8 and 50mm 1.2.

I plan on renting the gear required and shooting tethered from my relatively small flat (although it has a mezzanine which I plan to hang a white colorama backdrop from). I may also use a boom with reflector from the mezzanine.

In order to achieve a nice white background I am in two minds as to whether to use a big sheet of translucent material and place a large soft box behind it. Or whether to shoot with two smaller soft boxes onto opaque material from the front (as per sketch).

In terms of lighting the model from the front I was thinking of another two lights with medium sized strip soft boxes... and I also plan to hire a beauty dish which may or may not replace one of the strip soft boxes.

In terms of lighting I'm thinking of hiring four Elinchrom ELC pro HD 500's. The reasoning for this is being able to control the wattage down to 8 watts if needed, and that it seems to be a foolproof setup with them being directly mains powered and simply controlled by the sky port transmitter.

I'm very much open to ideas, but I want as simple and foolproof setup as possible as with renting the gear I will only have a limited amount of time to practice getting all this right.

Many thanks in advance,

Log in or register to post comments