Set-up a Portrait Studio Almost Anywhere

I'm just back from my weekend workshop organized by Amy Davies, who heads up Photography Events by Amy in Plymouth, MA. Great fun as always, and I can't wait for our 2013 workshop.

Day two was about speedlites. My goal was to illustrate that you can set up a portrait studio almost anywhere - and get cool results - with two speedlites and a few inexpensive accessories.

Our "studio" for the shoot was the hallway of an office building in Plymouth. Above is a behind-the-scenes shot.

The main light was positioned above and in front of the model, and to camera right. A grid was placed over the speedlite to focus the light. The speedlite was aimed at the model.

The background light was positioned to camera left and slightly behind the model. It was aimed at the background. A blue gel was placed over the speedlite, which was fired through a cardboard cutout.

Both speedlites were set at TTL. The main speedlight was set to 0 EV, and the background speedlite was set to – 2 EV, so as not to blast the background with light.

Both speedlites were fired via a radio transmitter/receiver set. My camera was set on the Manual exposure mode.

I demonstrate this and other speedlite set-ups on some of my workshops and at my seminars. I hope to see you there.

Gear for this shoot:
Canon 5D Mark III.
Canon 24-105mm IS lens.
Canon Speedlite 580EX II (two), which has been replaced with 600EX- RT.
Phottix TTL wireless transmitter/receiver - transmitter on camera, receiver on each speedlite.
Two stands from Westcott Apollo softbox kit.
Honl gel kit.
Honl grid.
Honl speed strap (for attaching grids and gels to speedlite)
Hand-made and expertly crafted cardboard cutout :-)

Explore the light,

P.S. Learn more about light in my latest Kelby Training class - Light, the main element in every photograph. My apps also include lighting tips.