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A Light Box and Portable Studio for Portrait Photographers


April 2020 issue Tech

A light box or portable studio may not seem like a tool portrait photographers would use very often. But what about using one to take your marketing imagery to the next level? I’ve been wanting to try a light box for just this purpose. Could I use it to create consistently styled social media peeks at products my clients order? The possibilities intrigued me.At first glance the Foldio3 from Orangemonkie seems like a good fit for this task. It collapses to an easy-to-store size, assembles... Continue Reading >

Go your own way: James Ferrara’s signature style


February 2020 issue Profiles

It could be James Ferrara’s background in film that gives his work a free-flowing, cinematic feel. Fifteen years of working on movie, television, and commercial sets developed in him an intuitive sense of movement and staging. Or it could be his longtime passion for the still image, launched in high school and carried on for years as a hobby.Whatever it is, it works. And it sells.Looking for a creative outlet that he could control, Ferrara, M.Photog.Cr., began shooting the occasional... Continue Reading >

How they did it: An electrical wedding portrait


1.25.2020 Tech

Portland, Oregon-based photographers Jos and Tree WoodSmith pride themselves on capturing a wedding’s unscripted moments. But they also look to provide a jaw-dropping post-wedding portrait to the bride and groom. To that end they typically scout a setting that boasts a dramatic landscape or architectural feature to serve as backdrop. The composition and settings are planned ahead of time so they can capture the image as soon as the couple appears on site, often before the reception... Continue Reading >

Product review: Westcott FJ400 Strobe and FJ-X2M Trigger


January 2020 issue Tech

When you work on location with strobes you need consistent color temperature, dependable batteries, and control of your light output. New from Westcott, the FJ400 Strobe (400Ws) and FJ-X2m Universal Wireless Flash Trigger is an impressive duo that dominates in all three areas.© Betsy Finn I noticed no color temperature variance across any of my images.The best part is the trigger’s compatibility with many cameras so you’re not locked into a brand or model. The FJ400 strobe and the... Continue Reading >

Get a natural look from off-camera flash


January 2020 issue Tech

I think a lot of photographers view flash as ugly and the opposite style of natural light. The truth is flash is just light you have total control over. You can make it look as natural as you’d like while having the added benefit of that control.© Vanessa JoyThis shoot was for the cover of my upcoming book, which is about how to use off-camera flash in 32 specific scenarios. I didn’t want the cover to be an obviously flash-based image. I wanted it to emulate natural light and be an... Continue Reading >

Lighting tutorial: A big-window feel in a small space


December 2019 issue Tech

There’s being prepared, and then there’s knowing how to adapt to the unexpected. To make quality images in any conditions, it’s important to learn and develop effective techniques to use and modify light.© Ian SpanierIn this case, I was on an assignment for The Wrap to photograph a number of producers and Hollywood bigwigs attending a conference. The shoot took place in the green room, a small conference room at Hollywood’s SLS Hotel where conference speakers could relax while... Continue Reading >

11 genius DIY lighting hacks


November 2019 issue Profiles

© Seth Miranda Seth Miranda will present a session on creative lighting at Imaging USA 2020.From the early days of his career as a teenager shooting for BMX magazines to his current work photographing beauty, makeup, and special effects imagery, Seth Miranda has sought to sculpt light with whatever materials he had at his disposal. That could mean using a full studio setup worth thousands of dollars or pulling items out of the trash on the streets of New York. To Miranda, there’s no real... Continue Reading >

Lighting tips: How to get the look in camera


October 2019 issue Tech

© James DevriesI believe the most important thing we can do in studio—after being creative—is to get it right in camera. I’ve tried all kinds of Photoshop tricks, but for me nothing beats a properly lit frame. So let’s work on putting light where you want it, blocking it from where you don’t, and bouncing it where you need it.BOUNCEEven with the softest modifier possible, a single light source is going to give you 100% black shadows. By bouncing light back from the other side... Continue Reading >

More power: Profoto B10 Plus

September 2019 issue Tech

© Courtesy ProfotoProfoto B10 Plus produces 10 times more light than a speedlight in a unit that’s about the same size as a large lens. Expect a high quality of light that’s natural with a soft falloff. The B10 Plus delivers twice the power of its slightly smaller sibling, the B10, but the price tag is only 25% higher.The B10 Plus is suitable for still photography as well as video. A dial on the unit lets you adjust brightness and color temperature to blend with ambient light. It uses... Continue Reading >
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