My Basic Studio/On-Location Speedlite Setup

One Canon speedlite in a Westoctt 28-inch Apollo softbox was used to illuminate this scene.

One Canon speedlite in a Westoctt 28-inch Apollo softbox was used to illuminate this scene.

Today is the last day in my series of speedlite shooting tips. Thank you for following along. Scroll down for previous posts in this series.

As some folks are just starting out, I thought it would be a good idea to share with you my Basic Studio and On-Location Speedlite Setup.

sammon portraits.jpg

But first, here's a practical tip: If you want a dramatic portrait, don't light the entire subject. Uses shadows to add a sense of drama to portrait.

Here's a look at the gear I recommend for setting up a basic studio/on-location speedlite setup.

Screen Shot 2012-12-15 at 12.45.55 PM.png

Westcott Apollo Softbox kit - for shaping the light for an individual portrait.
Westcott Grid for Apollo softbox
- for shaping the light even more.
Westcott Orb Speedlite kit
- for softer, wrap-around lighting and for small groups.
Westcott 6-in-1 Reflector/Diffuser kit
- bounce a speedlite into a reflector or fire it through a diffuser for a larger light source: the larger the light, the softer the light.

Honl Gel kit - for adding color to the light.
Honl Grid
- for shaping the light from a speedlite.
Honl Speed Strap
- for attaching grids and gels to your speedlite.

Westcott Black Cloth backdrop - for low key portraits.
Westcott White Cloth backdrop - for high key portraits.

If you are in the market for a Canon speedlite system, here are my recos:
Canon 600EX-RT Speedlite
Canon ST-E3 Speedlite Transmitter

For serious shooters, I recommend shooting tethered using the Tether Tools kit.

If you like on-line learning, check out my Kelby Training on-line classes. Master composition and learn how to see the light.


You'll find all sorts of lighting tips in my apps.

Good luck with your speedlite photography.

Explore the light,

This site powered by (designed and hosted on) Squarespace. Use one-click to get started with your own awesome Squarespace site.