first attempt at portrait lighting--suggestions welcome

Started Nov 20, 2012 | Discussions thread
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Steve West
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first attempt at portrait lighting--suggestions welcome
Nov 20, 2012

This is not a request for posing suggestions, but rather a request for how to improve the lighting.  My wife had just woken up, and I got her to sit for my first ever attempt as setting up some portrait lighting.

My setup has 2 umbrellas at about 45-deg to the side, and an overhead flash for hair lighting. Fisheye shot to get it all to show up.

My result:

First I think that the background needs to change to something that doesn't clash with the skin tones.

Second, I initially had a greater ratio between the umbrellas, but I kept cranking the left source up higher to penetrate through her hair. I probably should have had a bit of front lighting to fill her face under her hair or perhaps a reflector from below?

Third, I'm still wondering how to do the hair lighting properly. I went for a straight flash to harden the highlight.

Thoughts on what I should do to improve the lighting are appreciated!

Thanks

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