Sunday, May 12, 2013

Cool Lights . . . I Mean, "Hot!"

"There is light you create that is a photographic reaction to light as it exists in the world, and there is light you create just because it's cool." - Gregory Heisler

The concept for this photoshoot was directly inspired by Gregory Heisler's photo of Alonzo Mourning.  I wanted to do lighting just for the sake of "cool lighting".  But my model here is a hottie so I'm calling this photo set "Hot Lights".  The resulting photos were, of course, nowhere near what Mr. Heisler has achieved but the key word here is "inspiration" - not "duplicate".  It was a very good case study so I set out to try what can be done with my modest lighting equipment.

I have 2 Canon Speedlites and an LED continuous lighting which is probably best used for video.  I had the Speedlites both fitted with Rogue Grids - 1 with purple gel and the other with a blue gel.  Both of them were used for rim, one on each side behind her.  I was left with the LED light to use as main light.  Now this is a little under-powered compared to the Speedlites but that's the way I want it - just enough to illuminate my model without washing out the rim light colors that slightly wraps around her to the front.  I also had it with a shoot thru umbrella with 1 half covered to control white light (from the LED) from spilling onto the wall background.  Below is a snap of the light setup.

I think we succeeded in producing some great photos with this setup.  They do not look the same, and perhaps not half as good as Alonzo's portrait but we were not really aiming to copy that.  But I believe that what we made here is kind of cool too.  Or should we say, 'HOT!'


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