Hanna is a Swedish jazz singer, and she contacted me for updated headshots and publicity portraits. After a quick search on Google, I saw that she already had a lot of good portraits, but mostly outdoor and in natural light.
So I prepared a lighting setup in my studio using my new Profoto Giant 180 reflector as main light, in this portrait quite close (just look at the big catchlights).
With the fantastic focused light from my new favorite lighting modifier, despite its size, the facial features got the right amount of contrast in my taste. Especially highlighting the cheekbones nicely.
Profoto Giant 180 and rim lights
I used three lights during this photo shoot, the Giant, a beauty dish with grid and a strip softbox with grid. Starting like this makes it easy to get a good variation in the portraits just by moving the lights around or adjusting the light output.
Behind The Scenes
As usual, I tend to squeeze myself into some tight spot between the main light and the model, and this day was no exception. Having the camera (and my head) right in front of the Giant and Hanna on a chair got me in a position slightly above her so the large main light could really fall on her face from a nice angle.
The two lights behind was used as rim lights to create some kind of halo around her. What I did miss this time was to turn the lights from behind off, in hindsight it would have been interesting to see how this would have turned out with just the Giant.
Regarding the behind the scenes shot above it is not showing exactly how it was during when I took this portrait, the black Molton fabric in the background was not there, just the white wall (that turned out blue after tweaking the white balance in post processing).
Here you can see the results from the exact same setup with a Profoto Giant but on black background.
If you want to listen to Swedish jazz, here is Hanna on Soundcloud.