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Thread: What portable lighting equipment do you use when your shoot portraits outside studio?

  1. #1

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    What portable lighting equipment do you use when your shoot portraits outside studio?

    I do not have a studio and plan to take more environmental portraits using portable lighting equipment. What lighting equipment do you use when you do environmental portraits? Thanks! David

  2. #2
    Peter De Smidt's Avatar
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    Re: What portable lighting equipment do you use when your shoot portraits outside stu

    Ac power? Film/f-stop/modifier? One person/group? Headshots or...?
    May tomorrow be a better day.

  3. #3
    jp's Avatar
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    Re: What portable lighting equipment do you use when your shoot portraits outside stu


  4. #4

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    Re: What portable lighting equipment do you use when your shoot portraits outside stu

    Environmental means environment, so the natural scene with the subject in it...

    Look at the work of Arnold Newman, he used existing light but maybe added a single light for his subject usually...

    This can be merely a cheap painters light just over the lens to fill in shadows and even out the subject... And not so bright as to overpower the ambient lights...

    Steve K

  5. #5
    Foamer
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    Re: What portable lighting equipment do you use when your shoot portraits outside stu

    White Lightning X3200 with Vagabond battery, 54 inch umbrella. White or gold reflector opposite.


    Kent in SD
    Qui sedes ad dexteram Patris,
    miserere nobis.

  6. #6

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    Re: What portable lighting equipment do you use when your shoot portraits outside stu

    Newman did what it took to get the shot, simple or complex as the assignment demanded. If your subject has good natural light, then it's easy, just add some refllectors and fill cards as necessary.
    If not, then a flash kit is the way to go. The power requirements for LF work point that way. I use Dyna-Lite gear on location, but then I've had that kit for decades.
    Of course no two photographers work the same way...and you'll hear a lot of different answers (I hope).

  7. #7
    Peter De Smidt's Avatar
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    Re: What portable lighting equipment do you use when your shoot portraits outside stu

    I have a Godox AD600. It's a battery powered monolight with an LED modeling light. There's a newer AD600 pro that has better color consistency. Godox also has an AD400 and AD200. These can be wirelessly controlled. They're good lights, as long as they have enough power for you. The ad600/pro have modeling lights, but they're nowhere as bright as an AC unit. Using umbrellas or big modifiers outside can be tricky if there's any wind. They also eat light if they have to be a ways away from your subject. Cheetahstand, a very good supplier, has some reflectors especially for when you have to be a bit farther from your subject. For example: https://www.cheetahstand.com/product-p/colt-45.htm
    May tomorrow be a better day.

  8. #8

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    Re: What portable lighting equipment do you use when your shoot portraits outside stu

    A long time ago, I took a workshop from Norman McGrath, Photographing Buildings Inside and Out. I was interested in lighting, and I asked him what he would use, if he were beginning again.

    He responded Dynalites. So, I took advantage of student discounts and purchased 6000 watt-seconds of power packs and five, 2000 watt-second, heads. (This is close to what he carried at the time.) I also purchased a set of grids, some soft-boxes, and some other accessories. Of course, he was photographing architecture w/4x5, and his lighting kit reflected that.

    I still have all this lighting equipment, though I seldom use it these days. With today's digital cameras, this kind of power isn't needed.

  9. #9

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    Re: What portable lighting equipment do you use when your shoot portraits outside stu

    I use Profoto B1(x), 500ws (with digital MF though, not LF). Plenty of power for individual portraits except on sunny summer days. Then I sometimes use an extra B1 to double the power. I just point it into the same reflector. I prefer a beauty scale over umbrellas outside because of wind. I bring a 10 lbs counterweight for the light stand and even guy lines + stakes. Look up Rineke Dijkstra's beach portraits, she used fill in flash on 4x5".

  10. #10
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Re: What portable lighting equipment do you use when your shoot portraits outside stu

    I have used a Honda EU1000i generator I bought 25 years ago with https://www.paulcbuff.com/Flash-Model-Comparison-Chart as i have them with many modifiers.

    I may buy https://www.paulcbuff.com/Portable-P...-Lithium.html? as it is silent.

    I also may buy the newer https://www.paulcbuff.com/digibee-flash-unit as all my modifiers fit.

    I am also looking at the bigger Honda EU2200i as I need more power for another application.
    sin eater

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