happy birthday dr bob !
Thanks for all the replies! I'm just getting into taking decent pictures, and eventually would like to open a small studio, as I'm sure everyone else here wants to do also. Or maybe already has.
There is a large market for Senior Pictures in my area, since I live near my old high school, and currently one man has a complete monopoly on that market. And at this time, my budget is very small. Around $200 for lighting and filters, construction of any kind of device, etc... But, in time I will be upgrading to some Photoflex lights. That is if I can get a good start.
I will look into the photofloods, and also the silk. And I will experiment and see what I come up with. Thanks for everyones help. You've made a newbie feel at home.
Also, happy birthday dr. bob!
Happy Birthday Dr. Bob...many happy returns.
Well, you've gotten some good advice form people I really respect - one option I haven't seen here - maybe for a good reason. Seems like I have seen a couple of folks using the old reliable Vivitar 283 with an umbrella and a stand. Just a 3 flash system one behind the subject, one off to one side and one more just off center..seems like I have seen the layout for 2 or 3 light system in a couple of books. Other than you will have to figure out the light ratio (something I have never tried myself) to determine the flash output, seems like this is good way to put together a inexpensive light system (buy the flash used, although they are still under $70 at B&H). Does anyone know why this would not work, like I said this is not my kind of thing but have seen a layout like it before?
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Yoda Where are you located? I have a very old Ascor unit that I learned with, If you pay the shipping I'm sure, until you can get what your hoping for this will help.
Stop trying to get into my mind, There is nothing there!
I use a Lowel Folding Softlight. Stretch a piece of diffusion material between the top and bottom barndoors and you have a 1000 watt quartz softbox.
By no means an inexpensive solution but just to demonstrate that a hot softlight is possible.
That is called grain. It is supposed to be there.
Thomas, thank you very much. I have PM'd you with my info. Thanks again!
Flotsam, since these are worklights, even with quartz bulbs, wouldn't it still be too hot for a piece of fabric? And how long is too long to have them on?
This *would* definitely work.
Originally Posted by photomc
Using "Thyristor" - controlled flash units (like the Vivitar 283's and *many* others) and one or two of the Wein slave control units --- there are "Peanut" units selling for ~ $10 - $15 each), wonderful results can be obtained. Even *one* slaved unit as a fill is a *massive* improvement over a single on-camera flash. The silly "pop-up - red-eye reduction - (and I mean STUPID) can be used to trigger the good units.
Check with Calumet. Their Professional Lighting Catalog ... (I wonder if it is still available - I haven't seen one for a while ...) has all kinds of small flash units, inexpensive slave triggering units, stands, clamps, gaffer's tape.
I know a few accomplished Wedding photographers that use just such a set up, for the portability and versatility.
Ed Sukach, FFP.
There are a lot of very nice people here who will tell you all sorts of ways to achieve a lighing system. And as Thomas has suggested light is light. That, and what everyone here tells you is sincere and will be helpful.
What I'm going to tell you is what you are probably going to need to get yourself into any kind of situation where you can get to be professional at this. This is all bare bones and in my opinion what it will take to get you started. I have been exactly where you are and know what you are trying to achieve. One problem with some of the ideas presented is that you will find it easier to achieve duplicatable controlled lighting with "professional lights" with modelling lights, than with any other system. So by all means use their ideas but if you are serious about doing this for a living you will eventually have to buy what I'm suggesting. All these things are available used and on ebay for hugely discounted prices from what you will see in new catalogs.
You will need:
A monolight (self contained strobe) with modeling light (minimum about 600 watt seconds) examples Photogenic, Alien Bees Calumet etc
A softbox for the monolight (about medium size)
A stand for the monolight
A piece of fomecore for a reflector
A stand for the reflector
A light meter/flash meter
A muslin background and a background holder
The reasons are as follows,
Monolight vs power pack and strobes - both work well but for one light to start with I would suggest a single monolight.
Softbox vs umbrella - both work but the softbox has the ability to control the light better.
Obviously there are many ways to go on this but if you spend the money on experimental jerry rigged systems you could have put the money towards equipment that you could use professionally for years.