Best type of light for portaiture?

Started Apr 18, 2013 | Questions thread
Barrie Davis
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Re: Best type of light for portraiture?
In reply to TristatePhoto, Apr 21, 2013

TristatePhoto wrote:

Barrie Davis wrote:

TristatePhoto wrote:

Sailor Blue wrote:

I agree with Barrie, get studio strobes and lights with 300-400Ws of power are excellent choices.

I'm going to be the first to disagree.

Why spend so much money on studio strobes that are heavy and require huge battery's to use on location when you can get a cheap $70 flash that can be used on camera to bounce flash indoors, is highly mobile and easy/fast to set up, and you can get 4 of them for less than the cost of a studio strobe and have a whole studio set up with 4 flashes.

The main reason why is because of the modelling lights that are available in proper studio flash units.

Modelling lights are absolutely invaluable (indispensable?) during the process of learning how to light subjects. Seeing how the shadows and highlights fall, AS the lights are positioned, is intrinsic to the whole business of lighting, and is NOT a luxury....

... in fact, it may be said that any flashes that do NOT have modelling lights, like the typical camera-top units you are advocating, can only be used to their fullest and most effective degree...

... when the photographer ALREADY HAS previous experience with REAL lights (meaning ones with lights in them!)... and has already learned what (likely) power to use and where is (likely) best to place 'em.

So, while camera top flash has its uses, and multiple units used off-camera can also be pressed into service as substitutes for real studio units, when you know what you're doing...

....  they are the last thing anyone should choose while learning their lighting skills

For learning you need lights, not "darks!"

I still disagree.

Well, that's fine. You are allowed to hold any opinion you like.

It's so easy to learn about lighting and how to light your subject using only flash since you can easily check your cameras LCD

If you think that kind of delayed feedback is enough, then that is also fine. But, having seen a couple of your shots, I can't say it is working too well for you, I'm afraid.

I know that my own use of camera-top flash type only works as well as it does (tolerably well, at a push) because of a life spent working with lights that actually do shine light while I'm setting up.

As stated, this is particularly important while going through the learning process. With all due respect to you, it seems you are still at that stage, yourself, and in no position to tell anyone what equipment to choose, and how to use it.

I am sorry if this seems very harsh... but I am being honest. You deserve full honesty, because your motives in posting are good.

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Regards,
Baz
:
"Ahh... But the thing is, these guys were no ORDINARY time travellers!"

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