“Hey Cali, could you just feather that light left, please?”
Being in workshop mode, Cali was hand holding a Profoto B-1 fitted with a 1×3 RFI Strip Softbox, which in turn was fitted with a fabric egg crate. This little light shaper may be my favorite for big flash. Compact, it puts out a soft but definitive punch of light that fades quickly at the edges. Good character light, for sure. And, used vertically, it is also nice light for a very vertical (tall!) fashion model, the dramatically beautiful Candice Lam. The above pix have some fashion retouching, but exposure wise, they are out of camera.
A move of just a couple inches makes a big difference. It takes the heat off her far shoulder and incrementally opens up the shadow side of her body. Simple move, but as is always noted, this is a game of inches. An incremental push on a light can play large in the picture.
The feel and effect of the light move is enhanced by the fabric grid. I’m just about at a point where I won’t use a light shaper that doesn’t have a grid available to drop into it. I don’t always have them on the soft box I’m using, but man are they handy. They are always there on the set. Just a great way to retain the essential feel of the shaper in question, but also control the spill of it. Having the egg crate in this light shaper made the very minimal, subtle move Cali made with the light very visible in the frame that resulted. The little bit of hair light you see is also from a small strip, with a grid, hand held, on camera left.
During this two hour class, I used the B-1 units, and, I don’t need to tell anybody who has used them, but for location big flash units, they are transformative. Very quickly at the end of the class, we were able to change this, done as a quick and dirty scout picture….
Into the below….
The far B-1 has a tungsten gel on it, and is raw, with no shaper on it, just clipping those towers outside of the Javits Center. It is about 100′ from camera. The darkness is achieved via an exposure of 1/250th at f2.8, ISO800, shot in the fading dusk. There is a mid-sized shaper for the portrait aspect of the pic, as I recall. All this was done quickly, via radio, occasionally in TTL, occasionally in manual. Very easy to bounce around, mode-wise, with these lights. Camera was a D5, with a 70-200mm f2.8 lens.
The tools we have now for lighting are so sophisticated, it makes moving fast easy. But the basics still apply. Small things, like a fabric grid, and a feather of a move, make big differences.