Test shot with Jessi by Chris Kennedy
Chris Kennedy's picture

Test shot with Jessi

June 9, 2016

Model & MUA: Jessi June
Location: Miami Shores, FL

I think the most asked question I get about my photography is how I light-every time I point the person asking the question to using a light meter. Take this picture with Jessi-who turns out to be my neighbor, funny since I’ve known her for years and it’s been just as long since we shot last together.

Anyway back to how this was shot: I positioned all my lights (description below) and this was the FIRST test shot of the day! Think of how much time I would’ve wasted if I didn’t use my light meter? And go back and forth fine-tuning each light to nail it the first time like this! To me in this digital age I’m more dependent on my light meter now then back when I shot on film-the sheer amount of time I save you just can’t put a price on that! No guessing what each light is set to is so important when using multiple lights…

Now onto the lighting:

Key: Strobe with a 86” PLM Umbrella and diffusion sock placed on camera right. For the first part of this set I wanted next to no nose shadow so mostly positioned her to look straight at the light.
Fill: In the past I rarely use a fill-but have noticed lately I’m using it a lot more. I simply placed a 4’x6’ California Sunbounce on camera left-just off frame to fill in some of her shadows. Came in handy later during this set when she would’ve looked straight toward me.

Rim lights: Camera Right-I had two strobes, both with 20 degree grids and 3/4 CTS gels. One was aimed at her hair and was metered a 1/3 stop under my key and the second was just under it aimed at her hips and was metered about a stop under my key.
Camera Left a strobe with a 10”x36” softbox, 1/8 CTS, and metered about a 1/4 under my key. I wanted it a little bit cooler then the rim lights on her opposite side.

I had two backlights; one was next to the two rim lights on camera right just pointed at the wall. It had a 1/2 stop CTO to fill in the background. And the second was in the hallway on camera left, it was bouncing into a 42” reflector’s soft side and about a stop under my key.

So go out there and use those light meters!

85mm · f/3.2 · 1/200s · ISO 50
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1 Comment

As much as truly like this "new" look(?) i.e. natural colors and a "seemingly" light-handed 'shopping... I must say at this size... that shadow/highlight combo on the front of her knickers? Not sure if this is "The Real Jesse" June or James ;)

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