Friday, 13 April 2012

Clamshell Lighting

A couple of years ago I was lucky enough to meet Emily, a lovely model from the Isle of Wight.

I picker her, and one of her friends, up at the hoverport in Southsea then headed out to Havant to shoot at Staunton Country Park. It was around November and it was COLD. I was all wrapped up in multiple layers whilst Emily bravely, and without a word of complaint, managed to pose and look beautiful as she steadily froze solid. We did manage to get some great shots though. :) And we warmed her up before taking her back.

She was a real star that day so I was delighted when she suggested working together again.

We started out with a similar plan, but I thought we could make good use of the features around Southsea and Old Portsmouth. I met her at the hoverport again but unfortunately it looked like rain, the wind was picking up and it was a really dreary looking day. Enter "Plan B", back to the warmth and dry of home and a studio setup.

The shot above was made with just two lights. The background, a Lastolite HiLite, was lit with one Elinchrom BXRi 500 whilst Emily was lit with the second BXRi with 70cm silver beauty dish. The dish was fitted with a white deflector and shower cap to soften it just a little.

Using a C-Stand I was able to place the dish about 80cm in front of Emily and angle it down at 45 degrees to light her face and a large silver reflector. You can see two catchlights in her eyes, from the dish at the top and the reflector below. I placed the camera between the dish and reflector and had Emily look directly down the lens for this shot.

I love the clean simplicity of this. For a more dramatic look I could have removed the reflector, which would have introduced stronger shadows under her chin. The background looks good in grey too, which means that this could have been done with just one light.

Take care,

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