work in progress by Garage Studios assistant Zoe Baker

September 23, 2011

I have started shooting a series of portraits testing out different lighting set ups. The first shoot I did I wanted a tight head and shoulders shot which had a lot of contrast, so I used a couple of grids, one as my main front light, the second as a highlight from behind. To soften the front light I also added some diffuser in front of the grid. There was quite a heavy fall off shadow under the chin so I got Ed to hold a silver reflector to bounce the light back up to fill in that shadow.

The second of the series I wanted to achieve a completely different look and feel to the shot, with softer lighting and less contrast. I set up one 6 x 4 large softbox as my main light with a smaller 3 x 3 softbox as my backlight.

Afterwards, I tried to go for a different style, changing the lighting set up and introducing a dark grey backdrop. I moved the small softbox around to be my main light and then put a beauty dish in as my highlight. This meant i would still have a very soft light coming from the front but a harsher contrast wrapping around the side of him. I re-shot one of the dance shots I really liked from the previous lighting set up, as I thought it would work much better with a darker backdrop to lift it and bring Daveed forward in the shot, using the beauty dish to add a bit harsher contrast to define his body. This ended up being my favour shot.

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