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Shooting glamour photography can be like shooting traditional portraits with traditional lighting setups. However, modifying the standard approach to portraits can add more life, more interest to your shot when you know what you're doing.

When it comes to shooting glamour, rules are actually guidelines. The most interesting glamour shots out there in the real world are taken by photographers who have veered from the "rules" to come up with their own bag of tricks for shooting.

This lesson will show you a couple of simple modifications you can make to a standard portrait lighting setup to enhance the appeal of your images. After reading this, you will probably come up with some good ideas of your own.



(Click on any image below for an enlarged view.)

Topics Covered:

  • Programming the E-300 Camera Settings
  • Setting Up the Background
  • Setting Up the Quantum Q Flash
  • Setting Up the Main Light
  • Setting Up the Fill Light
  • Setting Up the Separation Light

Equipment Used:
You can click on the blue links below for more info.

Lighting Equipment

  • Dedolight DLH4 light head
  • Photoflex Accessory Heavy Duty Swivel
  • Photoflex Boom
  • Photoflex BoomStand
  • Photoflex HalfDome2 Small White (strobe)
  • Photoflex LiteDome Medium 24x32x17
  • Photoflex Litestand 2200
  • Photoflex Litestand 2218
  • Quantum FreeXWire radio slave
  • Quantum Qflash T4d
  • Quantum Turbo 2x2 Battery


Figure 1

The power switch is on the top, right of the E-300 body. Turn switch to the ON position (figure 1).

We want to shoot in the Manual mode to have greater control over aperture and shutter speed settings.

The exposure dial at the top, right of the camera can be rotated for mode selection. Rotate the dial until the M (Manual) setting is next to the indicator mark (figure 2).



Figure 2



Figure 3

To set the camera to Manual Focus mode, press the AF (Auto Focus) button on the rear of the camera. The LCD screen will show the focus menu. Rotate the main dial at the top, right of the camera until MF (manual focus) is selected. Press OK (figure 3).

 

The White Balance setting needs to be set to ensure proper color rendition in our shots. Since we are shooting with strobe lights, which are daylight balanced, we need to set the camera to 5500º K to match daylight.

Press the WB (White Balance) button on the rear, left of the camera. Then rotate the main dial to select 5500º. Press OK (figures 4 and 5).

 

We want high quality image resolution for our shot, so we will shoot in the TIFF mode.

To set the resolution, press the Resolution button on the rear, left of the camera. Rotate the main dial to select the TIFF mode. Press OK (figure 6).



Figure 6

 

We used an ISO value of 100 for our session.

To set the ISO, press the ISO button on the rear of the camera to show the current ISO setting. Rotate the main dial to reset ISO to another value. Press OK when done (figures 7 and 8).

 

 

To set the aperture manually, press the INFO button at the rear, bottom left of the camera. The current aperture setting will show in the LCD screen.

Rotate the main dial to find the desired aperture. Press OK (figures 9 and 10).

We set our aperture to f/16.

 

 

To set the shutter speed manually, press the INFO button on the back of the camera, then press the +/- button on the rear left of the camera to highlight the shutter speed in the LCD screen. Rotate the main dial to the desired speed (figures 11 and 12).

We set our shutter speed to 1/60 of a second.

 

 

And of course we need to insert a media card into the camera. The EVOLT E-300 uses a CompactFlash media card for recording the images. We are using a Lexar 1 gigabyte CompactFlash card for our session.

The media card access door is on the right side of the camera. Open the access door (figures 13 and 14).

 



Figure 15

Insert the CompactFlash card into the media slot. The pins of the card insert first as the label side of the card faces the rear of the camera (figure 15).

 

Press the CompactFlash card firmly in place, then close the access door (figures 16 and 17).

 

Now that we have the camera setting programmed we set up our tripod for the camera (figure 18).



Figure 18

 

We set up two Light stands, about 10 feet apart, at the back of our set. Each stand was initially set about four feet tall so we could attach our background pole easily. Then we attached the drop to the background support and raised it to about eight feet (figures 19 and 20)

 



Figure 21

With the camera setting made we were ready to set up the Key light. We attached a Q-Flash to a boom and boom stand then installed a medium soft box to the flash unit. This light was then placed just over and in front of the subject and turned towards the model (figures 21 - 23).

 

And Now We Shoot. . .

We can now start shooting some photos. Our first shot was taken using only the main light positioned as shown earlier in the lesson, in front of and above our model. Figure 24 shows the result when using only this light.

 



Figure 24

 

Our results show a good-looking shot, we have very nice skin tones and over all contrast, but we need some more spark in the subject's eyes.

To add the spark we need, we will add a second light in the form of the Photoflex Small HalfDome. Following the same procedures for the first light, we assembled the second Q-Flash unit and attached a Small HalfDome to the light. Then we attached the light and soft box to a Photoflex 2200 LiteStand and placed it in front of the model, tipping the light up to fill in the shadows under the subject's face and into her eyes (figures 25 and 26).

 

 

With the fill light in place we again framed up our model and made a second test exposure (figure 27).

 



Figure 27



Figure 28

Now we see that spark in the eyes and the skin looks even better with the addition of the second light (figure 28).

 

To add some separation of the model from the background we set up a “Rim” light. To accomplish this we used a Dedo Light set directly behind the model inline with the camera. With this position we will get a glow of light around the subject but we won’t see the light (figures 29 and 30).

 

 

Then we looked through the lens and had our assistant make adjustments to the lights' positions to get the effect we wanted. Once we were happy with the lighting positions we posed the model and made the next exposure (figure 31).

 



Figure 31

 

Figure 32 shows the progression of the shot to this point: one key light; the key light and fill light; and the key, fill and the separation light.

 



Figure 32


At this point we asked the model if she could put her hair up so we could see the separation light better. While she was in make-up, we added a magenta gel to the Dedo light to add some more color to the final shot (figures 33 - 35).



Figure 33

 

The following results show the model's hair up and the effects of the light without the gel and with the gel (figures 36 and 37).

The key to shooting glamour lies in trying new things to add interest. In our session, changing the color of gels is just one idea for adding different looks to our shots. You can also try various poses, different clothing and hairstyles, or possibly introducing props into the shots.

 

 

We took some more playful shots of our model. Some of these are shown below (figure 38).

We cropped in on these shots to put more attention of the model's face and not so much attention on the hat.

 



Figure 38


 

To add another touch, we added the wrap and got this shot (figure 39).

 



Figure 39

 

When shooting glamour shots, don't be afraid to experiment with your lights. Not everything has to be shot according to a formula. You may find some interesting effects that can be incorporated into your style. Happy shooting.

 


Equipment Used:
You can click on the blue links below for more info.

Lighting Equipment

  • Dedolight DLH4 light head
  • Photoflex Accessory Heavy Duty Swivel
  • Photoflex Boom
  • Photoflex BoomStand
  • Photoflex HalfDome2 Small White (strobe)
  • Photoflex LiteDome Medium 24x32x17
  • Photoflex Litestand 2200
  • Photoflex Litestand 2218
  • Quantum FreeXWire radio slave
  • Quantum Qflash T4d
  • Quantum Turbo 2x2 Battery

Recommended Links

  • To learn more about Photoflex equipment, go to www.photoflex.com
  • For more tips and techniques on lighting and cameras, visit www.webphotoschool.com and sign
    up for access to the Member Lessons.

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