Advice for getting lots of detail from a beard

Started Jan 4, 2011 | Discussions thread
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Advice for getting lots of detail from a beard
Jan 4, 2011

Hi all,

I could really use some advice on lighting a beard for a photograph I'm trying to make.

I'm trying to get a very detailed shot of a man's beard. I'm looking to light it so that I get as much contrast as possible, and bring out as much detail as I can, but without causing reflections.

I've tried lighting it from the side with a Lumiquest Softbox III and using a Tamron macro lens (will add pics when I'm home tonight) and I'm not happy with the result - it looks flat and there isn't enough light detail in the hair for what I'm trying to achieve.

However, if I use a bare flash, the light seems too harsh and strong, and the skin blows out with the hair being more defined.

Any advice would be hugely appreciated !

I have the following equipment available to me:
Nikon 70-300mm lens
Tamron 90mm Macro
2 flashes
1 Lumiquest Softbox III
1 Westcott 28" softbox
1 Westcott 28" umbrella
Various stands and remotes

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