Over the past two weeks or so local high school sports stars filtered into the studio at the Beacon because of their talents on their respective fields of play.
I racked my brain trying to think of a theme for this year and settled upon this lighting setup that would be consistent throughout all of them. Not being much of a studio photographer, I wanted to push my limits of what I had done in the past. So here is how it went down:

It started as a simple three light set up, 2 lights behind the subject about a stop over providing the highlights and a 60 inch octabox overhead and slightly in front for fill and some definition on the face.

Two lights were added on the background and gelled with their school's main color.

Two more lights in umbrellas are behind my shooting position (about 5-7 feet) at eye level. They are about a stop and a half to two stops under, mainly for added catch lights in the eyes.

I tweaked it from shoot to shoot but thats the general idea.

I didn't just want to do a straight shot though, and with no budget for a tilt shift lens, I borrowed a lensbaby from a friend and used that.
My first issue was dealing with the focus on the lensbaby. It was the original version that didn't lock so I had to shoot a lot and hope for the best. I was also limited to an aperture of f4.0 because that was the only disc we could find for it. Some finessing was needed to get the lights to power down far enough and not get any spill in the small studio space we have. Lastly two schools had the same color which is why the first girl has a black background and blue highlights.
Overall I am really happy with how they came out. It is the most lights I have ever used at one time and I can't say I will be running back to the studio to try and up that number.

Any thoughts?


Anonymous said...

I really like the lighting, I just don't know how I feel about the Lensbaby. I'm probably alone on this, but I like clean lines when I think sports. Plus, I loved last year's shots so much I was already biased!

Bethany Fritz said...

Wow! This turned out really great! It makes me think of the sessions that Crain's does each year, like 40 under 40. But the lens baby really makes it interesting., and I must say gutsy.

peter hoffman said...

Really nice work man, the Beacon should be psyched on these.

You need to change your blog name.

Brian said...

Thanks guys! And yes Peter, I am in the process of renaming the blog.

Brittany said...

Gawd, I love these. Don't even say you're not much of a studio photographer.

pop said...

Read all the captions which I thouhgt mwere great. For some unknown reason no photos showed up on my screen. This is a first and can't figure what happened.

Tiff :) said...

Love, love, LOVE! Perhaps it is become I am addicted to sports, but these look amazing and they really capture the intensity of an athlete! You have a gift.

Btw, had to tell you that Gage bought me a Canon xsi. I am pretty sure you're a Nikon fan, but I am having a ton of fun with this camera :)