Light is Light When it Comes to Glamour Photography

by | Feb 5, 2020

Today’s Post by Joe Farace

“Light,” as a wise photographer once told me, “is light.”

The most important characteristics that any studio lighting system can have are the quality and quantity of its output’s. The kind of hardware you use can have an impact on both of these aspects but the quality of the light can further be affected by your choice of light modifiers, such as umbrellas and softboxes.

Studio lighting equipment can be divided into two basic categories: Continuous or Electronic Flash—and that includes speedlights.

  • Continuous lighting is always “on,” much like turning on a light bulb or shooting outdoors using the sun, enabling you to use your in-camera light meter to measure the light falling on your subject. Continuous lighting equipment lets you see how the light falls on your subject and because some of this kind of gear gear can be inexpensive—even using LED light bulbs—it makes a good starting point for anyone on a budget. Continuous sources sometimes use quartz or photoflood bulbs that can be hot, even dangerously so, leading to the use of the term “hot lights” to describe them. An increasing number of continuous lighting tools are being made with fluorescent and LED lights producing what are, in effect, cool “hot lights.”
  • Electronic flash may be more familiar because almost every camera has one built-in. Because the light from electronic flash is almost instantaneous you can’t directly see the effect of the light on your subject, which is why most studio electronic flash units have a “modeling” light to show an approximation of what the lighting will look on the final image.

How I made this shot: This photograph was made using two Bowens 400Rx monolights and an Olympus OM-D EM-5 Mark I Micro Four-thirds camera with an Olympus 12-50mm f/3.5-6.3 zoom lens at 24mm. Exposure was 1/125 sec at f/9 and ISO 200.


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