Setting up for portraits at home

I’m out on one of my first shoots of the year this afternoon, visiting a local family to take portraits as a family and of their one year old daughter.  It’s the first outing without the strobes too and in their place I’ll be taking the new Bowens kit.

I’ve always loved the idea of being a travelling photographer, part of the big expense (and one you have to pass on to clients) is running a studio, having a portable kit allows me to go to people’s home and transform relatively small space’s into working studios in minutes.

For the technically curious there are pitfalls to avoid.  Small spaces, such as my living room pictured here, reduce the options for set up and too powerful a flash can lead to some pretty unflattering passport like images!  The set up you can see here is a traditional butterfly, not commonly used these days  but it’s a reliable base to start from.  One key light above, angled down to a 45 degree angle and a fill light aimed towards the subject below.  The softbox’s allow me to get pretty close to the subject without blowing out all the detail, creating harsh contrasting shadows or bleaching out skin tone.

I’ll be posting up some examples soon!

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