Photography Reflectors - The Unsung Heros!

Sep 5 08:14 2011 Dan Eitreim Print This Article

Studio lighting is expensive! You are better off using photography reflectors! they do as good a job and cost next to nothing...

We all know that photography is about capturing light. We all know that the basic setup for a portrait requires three lights...Now for the ugly part - buying good quality studio portrait lights is expensive! Enter photography reflectors...If we can't afford to get a top quality 3 light system,Guest Posting the best option is to buy just ONE good quality light (rather than 3 cheap - and mostly useless - ones). Then we replace the other lights with reflectors that cost next to nothing. We could even make them ourselves!Here's what you do...First: Set up your one studio light at around 45 degrees between your subject and the camera. Make it about 45 degrees above them as well. That's one light. (BTW - your one light could even be the sun if you are outside!)Second: Set up one or more large white photography reflectors near to the model on the opposite side of your light. This will bounce light back into the shadowed side of the face. That's light number two.Third: Position a mirror above and behind your model. Angle the reflective surface to be pointed at the top and back of the model's head and reflect light into his or her hair. That's the hair light...light number three.To avoid accidents and breakage, you can use mirrored plastic. Safety comes first. Or, in a pinch, you could use aluminum foil taped to a piece of poster board.Fourth: Using a larger mirrored surface (The mirrored plastic sheets come in sizes up to 4 feet!) angle it to push light onto the background. With the judicious use of gels and cookies, you could "project" colors and patterns on the backdrop too! This is your separation light. Light number four.Fifth: Using a smaller piece of the mirrored material, have someone hold it (or mount it on a stand) to kick some additional light into the face. Now if you expose for the light hitting the face, it is more than the light hitting the rest of the scene. So the rest goes slightly darker and subtly forces attention to the face. This is a MAJOR pro tip! This one is called a kicker and is light number five...Need I continue?You could light an entire set - with as many light sources as you want - with only one actual light and homemade or inexpensive photography reflectors. Try it, it's fun and you will learn a TON!

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Dan Eitreim
Dan Eitreim

I know how hard it can be to try and capture your creative vision with a camera, but if you really want to be creative you'll need to learn a couple methods that work amazingly well...They are simple to pick up, work right away and don't take any practice - you can read how to do it in my free ebook "7 Secrets To Creating Stunning Photos!"

Don't give up hope, it's NOT impossible. To learn how to put that elusive "WOW" factor into your photography - go here:

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