Matthew Granger – Dramatic Single Light Portraiture

Shoot #1 – High Speed Sync

In this shoot I talk you through Sycn Speed -what it is, how it works and how you can work around this with high speed sync technology.

We head outside with Model Johanna and show you how to create this dramatic super hero themed shot on a cloudy day, with one off camera flash.

Shoot #2 – Silhouettes

A messy house, a cluttered room and a simple sliding door. Put this together and you may not have much of an image. But – add in a single off camera flash and you can create magic!

In this shoot we completely cleaned up a messy room with careful posing, positioning of the sliding doors and a couple of simple tricks I will share to eliminate the elements in the room behind Steph.

The single light here gives a great wrap around light that hugs her figure and creates a dramatic final result.

Shoot #3 – Invisible Lighting

Here we put together a classy 1920’s Glamor style portrait of Yasmin by making use of the available room light, and augmenting it with a small amount of added light.

The goal was to elevate the image & give a flattering light pattern on Yasmin, without making the added light noticable nor taking away from the ambience of the room.

In this series I demonstrate the results we can create using both a simple umbrella and a small softbox as modifiers for a basic manual flash.

Shoot #4 – Smoke, powder & dance

Shooting with a professional dancer is a real treat – and it is hard to go wrong!

But rather than simply catching him in motion, we set out to create a dramatic action shot using smoke, powder and rear lighting.

In this shoot I hide a small manual flash behind the dancer to create a dramatic streaming light.

I show you how to build rapport and improve your timing to capture peak extension. I also show you how to add smoke and powder to create a hazy atmosphere.

Shoot #5 – Creating Shadows

So often we are trying to minimise or soften shadows – Not Here!

In this shoot I show you how to vary your light source to make the shadows as hard or dark as you like.

I also demonstrate how to create interesting shadow patterns on your subject and the scene to create a more dynamic and layered image.


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