What do I need for a portrait, like this?
A studio, right? All sorts of light, right? Light meters? Pocketwizards?
For this portrait of Sarah, I was showing her how to do this the easy way. You need:
- A camera.
- One flash, like an SB-700 or a 430EX.
- If is it a recent Canon (like a 7D, 60D, etc) or most Nikons, that is all. If an older Canon, you need an additional flash on top of the camera to drive the other flash.
- A light stand
- An umbrella
- A bracket on that light stand to mount the flash and umbrella
- A clean wall
- A reflector – this can be a “proper” reflector, or a white sheet, or a piece of bristol board, or whatever you can get someone to hold – or another wall at 90 degrees to the background wall!
That looked like this:
And that really is all. You now do the following:
- Mark the floor where the subject is to stand (use tape).
- Put the stand up, at 45 degrees from the subject, and 45 degrees up.
- Move the reflector in place.
- Put the flash in “Slave” or “Remote” TTL mode.
- Put your camera’s flash in “Master” or “Commander” mode.
- Disable flashing from your on-camera/popup flash. It will send commands to teh remote flash, buy it will not fore when the picture is actually being taken (else you would get nasty shadows).
- Move the model’s body toward the umbrella; face to you.
- Check results.
- You will probably need “Flash Exposure Compensation” of +1 stop if you are using a bright wall. For bright clothing also, maybe +2 stops. Ensure you gte good catch lights, too.
And that’s that. Takes a few minutes only. No, it does not always need to be complex.