From the category archives:

Studio Lighting Setup


Recently one of my sons visited my in the photo studio, and I took the opportunity to shoot some portraits (can be fun to try something arranged with good lighting instead of the thousands of snapshot in my iPhone).

My lighting was simple, one Profoto D1 with a white Softlight reflector (beauty dish) camera left and a strip softbox behind him as rim light camera right.

That done, the problem was to get him into the sweet spot of the lighting and staying there for at least one minute. Luckily I had some props left from another photo session, one of the a heavy fabric with some brown/golden pattern.

Two lights and some fabric…


This is another headshot from the portrait session I had with an aspiring Swedish actor a couple of weeks ago. I often work this way, from a prepared set to something simplified where I have removed almost everything I started with.

In this case, all that is left is the Profoto D1 with a beauty dish camera left.

Make it simpler and simpler…


Recently I was asked by an actor to shoot some headshots for him that he could use to promote himself with. Good portraits are always a good start, and I started as usual with a much more complicated lighting setup but removed light after light until there only were two left.

We did a lot of different portraits that session, and I will probably show them later, this post is about this setup which can easily be modified in small steps to produce a good range of portraits, just by adjusting some angles and moving the main light a little bit. I always like to deliver variation.

More portraits and a diagram here…

Profoto, White Softlight Reflector and a bare bulb for this rockabilly portrait.

This is a portrait of what I guess is Sweden’s foremost expert on the rockabilly culture, that is maybe not so hard to guess by his appearance? His publisher asked me to get some publicity portraits for his new book, and I brought some lights and stands to his apartment thinking it was going to be easy.

It wasn’t. The portrait bit was not so hard, he is very used to getting his picture taken and even likes it, I think. But making room in his apartment for light stands and me and him and some other things I brought along was impossible.

So I had to restrict my plans a bit, and reduce the lighting to the bare minimum. One main light and one for the background, doubling as hair light.

One beauty dish and one bare bulb…


This is a photo from one of my latest assignments, portrait of another Swedish illustrator in my studio. During the photo session, I adjusted the setup a little step by step and somewhere in the middle it resulted in this.

The setup was quite simple, but very easy to change into something quite different just by moving the camera to the side just a bit or removing the background paper.

Two Profoto D1, one with a white Profoto Softlight reflector on (i.e. a beauty dish, this time with a diffusion sock I just purchased) and the other with straw gel.

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