Sometimes Small Softboxes Are Better Than Big Ones

Our good friends over at Pocket Wizard have had a great year with the release of the new Nikon MiniTT1 and FlexTT5 wireless radio triggers as well as the new AC3 controllers which allow you to control groups of flashes directly from the top of your camera. This video of Neil Van Niekerk shows how he is able to use the new AC3 controllers along with some relatively small softboxes to produce quick and easy studio style shots on location. I'm a huge fan of the Photoflex Octodome softboxes that I use on most of my shoots but these small Lastolite softboxes have an interesting look that you can't always get with larger softboxes. I guess it's the soft directional lighting that adds a bit of moodiness into Neil's images that I like. If you have had a chance to experiment with different sized softboxes on location, which ones do you prefer and why? Let us know in the comments.

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7 Comments

Lee Morris's picture

"give me the drama" I'm going to use that one :)

Sean Shimmel's picture

Too many of us are "afraid of the dark".

As Joe Joe McNally reminds, "if you want to make something interesting, don't light all of it"

Im a fan of neil, he does excellent crisp and clean work. 
Something i noticed on this video is how well he set the lights on the first setup, he drew a shadow across the front of the belly of the woman leading her to look much thinner.

I like very much all the pics at the end with the settings, it's not shown often enough, like it's a secret ! Thanks :)

nice work and photos and Id love some of these triggers for my k5! :D

"I guess it’s the soft directional lighting that adds a bit of moodiness into Neil’s images that I like"

Let's just get one thing straight...
He light is very nice... It's just not soft.

I always use my beauty dish no matter the location because of the drama it creates. Depending on how far away I distance it from the subject will give me the amount of drama and contrast points that I need to make the shot.