Lighting Setups

Lighting setups: 14th November 

14th Nov: morning

So during todays session we were experimenting with different lighting setups, our group was split into 2 groups and then we were put into pairs. Half the group would be inside for the morning and the other half would be outside in their pairs experimenting with hand held lights. Seeing as I was in the group that were going outside we would be using the hand held lights this morning; in the pair that I was in we went over to a little seating area near Ravensbourne and teamed up with another pair so that we had two lights between us. We experimented with these lights shooting portraits and still life photos, working on our lighting and background lighting to see what worked well and what didn’t. Because one light was brighter than the other we had to experiment with the distancing of the lights so that the things that we were shooting were equally balanced making sure that the main subjects weren’t too bright.

These are three of my first images that I took outside with the hand held lights; with the first and third photo the two lights were directed, one at the black wooden background which was the brighter light and then the other light was directed towards the models face and body. The photo in the middle had one light directed at the background again and then the other light was on the floor directed up towards the models body so that this made the underneath of the model face light up. The shadows in this photo were quite strong behind the model as the light was underneath the model.

These were another two photos that I took whilst using these lights; for this one I decided to create a still life photo using a bottle with someone holding it as if it was an advert for this specific company advertising the sort of drink. This also created some very nice shadows in the process with the lights; I had one light on the background again and the other on the bottle itself to show it off more. When editing these photos in Lightroom I decided to just highlight the bottle so that this was what caught the eye as soon as you saw it. I turned up the hue and saturation slightly so that this made the colour of the bottle pop a bit more. I also darkened the background more slightly and lightened the shadows and whites so that the shadows were more defined in the background.


So this afternoon the two groups switched so that the group I was in were now in the studio and the other group was shooting outside. In the studio we had five different lighting setups to test out in our pairs, we had to go around each setup and spend time on each one shooting some photos and testing out the lighting moving the lights and poly boards around if we could so that we could get the best lighting from each of them. The setup that I started off at was one with an umbrella with the light directed towards it so that it then bounced off the umbrella and towards the subject; with this and the next two setups we were able to change where the lights were and we could also change which way the poly boards were facing it if the setup had a poly board with it; these could either be changed to the white side or the black side to either absorb or reflect the lights off of it.


These are my five lighting setups from the afternoon task; I decided to just do small diagrams for these light setups and just label what each drawing in the diagram was. The camera was marked with an ‘X’ in each diagram with an arrow pointing towards the model which was marked on the diagram with a circle.

Setup 1:

Setup 2:

Setup 3:

Setup 4:

Setup 5:

I really liked working on each of these setups especially with the second and last one as I liked the vibrancy of the pink background in the second setup and how this created some really nice shadows. I also liked the last setup with the big octolight and strip lights as the photos came out really bright because of these. With the third setup I quite liked the eeriness of this, because of the two strip lights being at with side on the model and the black sides of the poly boards in front absorbing the light this made it look creepy with only the sides of the model being lit up. The first and fourth setups I liked, I found them a bit simple but still effective as it created a really simple lighting technique to use in future shoots for say beauty lighting or just to use in general. I found all of this really interesting and fun to work on and will use them all in my future shoots.


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