Oxford School of Photography

insights into photography

Photo Recipes: Scott Kelby’s killer one-light portrait setup

From Digital Camera World

In his new series in Digital Camera magazine and Digital Camera World, the legendary Scott Kelby reveals some of the behind-the-scenes secrets of some of his favourite images. This month Scott explains how to get a pro-level look to your portraiture without resorting to complex lighting, using just a simple one-light portrait setup.

Words and images by Scott Kelby. You can follow Scott and his work on his blog or on his live photography talk show The Grid. You can also find Scott and his KelbyOne team on their Facebook page and on Twitter as @KelbyOne.

Photo Recipes: Scott Kelby's killer one-light portrait setup

Photo Recipes is inspired by the chapters in my books where I show a photo and  discuss how to take a similar shot: what lighting equipment was used, the camera gear and settings, and so on. Here I can expand on what I did in the book, share behind-the-scenes photos, and even talk about the post-processing when appropriate.

Last time we looked at a very simple technique for rigging a remote camera for sports to cover areas that are either hard to access, impractical or unsafe to have a person standing there (Of course, it can also be used for weddings or any occasion where you need a second shooter but don’t have one). This time, we’re lighting a portrait.

When it comes to lighting, I’m really one of those ‘less is more’ guys. My lighting set-ups tend to be mostly one light. In this case, we’re going to do a really simple one-light shoot – perhaps the easiest one you’ll find, because it would really be hard to position the light incorrectly using this set-up.

The idea behind this look is to create the bright shadowless look of a ring flash, without the harsh light and dark halo shadows usually associated with a ring flash – and even without actually using a ring flash.

DCM163.shoot_recipes.2_position

Read the full tutorial here

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