Home studio setup (lighting) question......

Started Apr 9, 2013 | Questions thread
Sailor Blue
Sailor Blue Forum Pro • Posts: 12,728
Re: Home studio setup (lighting) question......

studionewbie wrote:


Many thanks!!!!

However, I am unsure if this is a good choice. For example, it doesn't have come with reflectors (not sure if it is a must for back /background lights); also, I am unsure if it can be triggered properly.... I am thinking that my BG400 units will be triggered by the wireless pulsar module, which will then the Flashpoint units (i.e. photo slave of the Flashpoint detecting the flash of BG400).  Is this how it should work???

Currently, I am looking at Flashpoint 160 budget kit with two lights: http://www.adorama.com/FPBK1.html


As already mentioned, they don't have speedring attachments.  The power of the strobe is also not adjustable, and power adjustment is an absolute must.

Here is a much better light for hair, accent, and background.  Check with Adorama but I'm pretty sure you can buy speedrings, grids to fit the 8" reflectors, and other accessories like barn doors.

Adorama - Flashpoint II 320M, 150 Watt Second AC / DC Monolight Strobe

The big question:  I am looking to have a back light and a background light.... what kind of product would people typically purchase for studio of this size /setup, and how would they set them up?

As for lighting, I have just purchased a Bowens Germini 400/400 rx kit. I intend to use them for key light and fill light respectively. They come with a wireless "pulsar" module where I would plug into my camera hotshoe, to trigger the flash.

The area that I have is approximately 10' (W) x 6' (H) x 12' (D).  I am planning to buy a 10' wide background support, with 9' wide muslin and vinyl backdrops.

10'w is too small.  By the time you get two light stands with lights and diffusers in you will only have about 3'-4' of space to cram in a subject, and the diffusers will be about 1.5'-2' from the subject.  You need a wider space.

6' height?.  Do you mean 8' ceiling height?  I sure hope so, and even that is very limiting - I know because it is what I have to work with.

12' deep.  The subject should be 6' from the background.  Even with paper taped to the wall as a background you are only left with 6' of distance to the far wall, which means that the camera would be about 4.5' from the subject.  You would have to use a wide angle lens and you would get extension distortion in all your image, even with head shots.

You want to be 15' or further from the subject to minimize distortion and to give your images the same appearance as what your memory provides.

Portrait Lenses

You need about 25'-30' to be really comfortable.  That lets you get the subject 6'-10' from a background and gives you enough subject to camera distance that you can use longer focal lengths.  I love my 70-200 mm lens on my 7D for waist up or head shots, and it can easily put me more than 15' from the subject.  I go to my 28-70mm lens for full length portraits.

The way I get 26' of length is by combining my dinning room with my living room by shoving all the furniture out of the way.  You can get a bit more space by shooting corner to corner in a small room or by shooting through a doorway.

I am a newbie trying to setup a home studio and I need some advice....

I suggest you read my article on equipment for a small home studio before investing any more money.  You don't want to waste money on low quality equipment that won't do what you want like I did the first time and like the ones you asked about.

Sailorblue - Digital Photography Review - Equipment Guide for Setting up a Small Home Portrait/Glamor Studio

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Living and loving it in Bangkok, Thailand. Canon 7D - See the gear list for the rest.

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