Saturday, April 24, 2010



I don't do a lot of off-camera lighting. Not because I think it isn't cool (it seems awesome), but it involves schlepping around a ton of crap. A little ironic, since it seems like a lot of photographers are excited about how they no longer have to carry around 300 pounds of crap to do professional quality lighting. Instead, it's just the stands, the umbrellas/softboxes, three speed lights, backdrops, diffusers, etc. etc.

My compromise for social events is a little fold-up soft-box and an SB-800. Last night, I was at a friend's housewarming party, the conversation got around to another friend's tattoo. One thing lead to another, and he was taking his shirt off to show people. Naturally, I asked to take a picture, and out came the flash.

I had my friend Steve hold this beneath and underneath. My understanding is that muscles and the like work better with some harder light to make them pop (I guess the well-defined edges on the shadows help?), but I wasn't convinced with just one flash I could get enough spread to light his whole back. So, I put on the softbox, and got this.

It's a little more cooked in post than normal for me, but the glow and the flexing-muscles-in-the-dark thing works for me.

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