A Versatile and Effective One-Light Portrait Setup

When you are new to learning, it can be tempting to think that you need complex multi-light setups in order to create compelling professional portraits, but that cannot be further from the truth. While such setups certainly have their place, you will be surprised by just how much you can accomplish with only one light. This fantastic video tutorial features an experienced portrait photographer sharing four effective single-light setups and how to use them. 

Coming to you from Nathan Elson, this awesome video tutorial will show you four different one-light portrait setups. If you are newer to working with artificial light, it really is important to start with a single light until you are comfortable. Doing so will allow you to more easily learn and build an instinct for crucial aspects of lighting, such as subject and source distance, falloff, modifier size, and more. Once you have mastered these, you will find building and working with multi-light setups far, far easier. Check out the video above for the full rundown from Elson. 

If you would like to continue learning about how to light a portrait, be sure to check out "Illuminating The Face: Lighting for Headshots and Portraits With Peter Hurley!"

Alex Cooke's picture

Alex Cooke is a Cleveland-based portrait, events, and landscape photographer. He holds an M.S. in Applied Mathematics and a doctorate in Music Composition. He is also an avid equestrian.

Log in or register to post comments