Traveling Light shoot #1: Beauty Light

Beauty Light: soft, almost shadowless light

In preparation for our upcoming. May 24th lighting workshop, Traveling Light: lighting for photographers on the go,  I’m publishing a series of portraits that use some of the specific techniques we’ll discuss—and play with—during the all-too-brief workshop.  Again, all of these shoots are done with “small” strobes—the expensive pieces of gear too many photographers leave attached to the hot shoes of their DSLR cameras.

First up is Beauty Light.  Why beauty light?  Because it looks good, is flattering especially to women, and is the height of simplicity.   Three strobes, a diffusion scrim and one well-placed reflector.

Here’s a lighting diagram:

Note: Diffusion panel is actually directly overhead subject; reflector under subject's chin not shown.

Now I hear the question:  why should we come to the workshop if you’re showing off the shoots (and the lighting diagrams) here?   Well, from my point of view, describing a shoot isn’t the same as being on a shoot.  Not even close.  Hopefully you’ll glean some helpful info from these short descriptions, but this is more inspirational than strictly informational.  You can play around with settings and locations in order to recreate these shots, and you can eventually recreate them.  Thus you’ll learn, which is the point.   But if you have limited time and learn best by interaction, then you might want to attend a workshop or a class.  This will save you some time—usually, a lot of it.   At the Traveling Light workshop, for example,  we’ll discuss not just technique, but approach, philosophy and how to react when you’re in the pressure cooker situation of a real, live shoot, with real, live, impatient people.

So I hope you get a lot out of these posts.   Stay tuned to the blog for more sample shoots.  Special thanks to www.lightingdiagrams.com!