When one light can be enough! (High key studio lighting)

The lighting for this photo was very simple. One light!

One Light

In coming months I will post other blogs demonstrating lighting set ups that I use and experiment with, but I was really happy with this image due to the effect achieved with just one light….placed behind the subject (the highly recommended and easy to work with Angela).

The high key effect was achieved by using a white backdrop and then flooding the room with light. The diagram below illustrates the simplicity of the set up…


The studio stobe was placed on a light stand and pointed vertically up about a foot and a half in front of the backdrop. The power was set relatively high to flood the room with light, bouncing light in every direction, blowing out the background, and also lighting the subject.

Typical camera settings for me when working in the studio are normally 1/125, f8 – f10, ISO 200. For this photo my settings were 1/100, f3.2, ISO 500. Why? Because at these settings enough light registered to expose correctly for Angela. The backdrop would be blown out white so I was not too concerned with over exposure for the background.

I did get some light that infringes on the arms and outer edges of the model causing it to blow out slightly but this is all part of the effect with this set up, and I could (and will!) experiment with this further to produce some blown out flair spots – by asking the model to move slightly to the side of the light.

A small bit of photoshop work was required to clone out the legs of the studio light stand from behind the model.

One light and a pleasing high key effect!


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