Light Shaping Tool of the Month: StripLight

Written by Fredrik Franzén on . Posted in Commercial Photography

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Profoto Nigel Hariman Light Shaping Tool StripLight Demented 01 600x327 Light Shaping Tool of the Month: StripLight

©Nigel Harniman

Each month we highlight a certain item in Profoto’s rich assortment of Light Shaping Tools. (Previous articles can be found here.) This month we ask UK car photographer Nigel Harniman how and why he uses the StripLight.

Let us be clear about one thing: the StripLight is not a strip softbox. Strip softboxes are mounted onto flash heads. StripLights, on the other hand, are special application heads with built-in flash tubes, designed to provide a long and narrow light source with a subtle fall-off. Think of it as a precise and powerful fluorescent lamp, if you will.

StripLights are often used with BarnDoors to create perfectly even highlights with sharp outlines. It is for this reason that many car photographers wanting razor sharp reflections in the car body use them. This is also where Nigel Harniman and his shots of Demented (his beloved, custom-made Kawasaki VN1500) enter the picture.

To give Demented the respect it deserves, Nigel decided to shoot it in a dank, severe setting amid broken light and fractured metals and water, also known as the Lawrence Recycling plant in Kidderminster. He then used a medium-sized StripLight to make its shapes and details stand out from the murky environment.

“StripLights are very good at front lighting hard, shiny objects,” says Nigel. “You get these clean, white highlights that accentuates the form of the object you’re shooting. In the case of Demented, most of the highlights in its body were created using a single, medium-sized StripLight. The highlights in the chrome, the shape of the fuel tank, the details in the wheels, the texture in the seat, all these little streaky details were created using that single StripLight.” Read More

Tarick Foteh Highlights Design Driven Wakeboard Boats

Written by M. Gertz on . Posted in Commercial Photography

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profoto tarick foteh 03 600x400 Tarick Foteh Highlights Design Driven Wakeboard Boats

© Tarick Foteh

Tigé Boats describes themselves as a design-driven boat company who couples innovative technology to bold shapes and colors to create a high end product. They came to photographer Tarick Foteh looking for some images that would highlight their boats’ unique qualities in a clean, spotless, high-shine style, reminiscent of automotive photography.

Tarick knew that this style would require “extra care in light modification and control,” to say the least, and shipping the boats to a studio that could accommodate them was out of the question and out of the budget. Instead of running away screaming, Tarick rose to the task, traveling to the factory where the boats are made and deciding to build his studio right there on site. Read More

Blair Bunting On Photographing Athletes for Muscle Milk

Written by M. Gertz on . Posted in Commercial Photography

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profoto recommends blair bunting Blair Bunting On Photographing Athletes for Muscle Milk

Blair Bunting thought his campaign for Muscle Milk would be over in a snap, but when the agency saw his initial 4 images, they couldn’t get enough, sending him to multiple locations for over 10 more shoots.

The challenge was to find a lighting setup that would work just as well with a basketball player as it would a yoga practitioner or a runner. Blair settled on one using four Profoto Pro-8a packs to get the desired look, counting on their quality of light and speed.

See the shots and a behind the scenes look at his set over on his blog. See more of his work at blairbunting.com.

All images and quotes in this post are used with permission and ©Blair Bunting, all rights reserved; story is ©Profoto. Please respect and support photographers’ rights. Feel free to link to this blog post, but please do not replicate or re-post elsewhere without written permission.

Corey Melton Photograph’s Jim Gaffigan’s Growing Family

Written by Fredrik Franzén on . Posted in Commercial Photography

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Profoto Corey Melton Jim Gaffigan Corey Melton Photographs Jim Gaffigans Growing Family

If you think it is difficult to make one kid sit still long enough to get some decent shots, try photographing five. Fstoppers staff writer Corey Melton experienced this first hand when he was asked to shoot comedian Jim Gaffigan and his growing family for Jim’s new book Dad Is Fat.

“I figured that this shoot could end up going in any direction,” writes Corey. “I have a 3 year old daughter at home and I know how hard it is just to get her to sit still long enough to get some decent shots, so I couldn’t imagine 5 all at once! Because of this I wanted to keep the lighting simple and straight up, but to light in a way that the kids could move around and still maintain consistent lighting throughout the shoot.”

Corey’s solution incorporated a D1 monolight with an umbrella and an AcuteB2 battery generator with an Acute/D4 Ring flash.

Read the full article at Fstoppers and learn how Corey used these tools to create a series of promotional images for Jim’s book.

 

All images and quotes in this post are used with permission of ©Fstoppers and Corey Melton, all rights reserved; story is ©Profoto. Please respect and support photographers’ rights. Feel free to link to this blog post, but please do not replicate or repost elsewhere without written permission.

John Tsiavis on the Move

Written by Fredrik Franzén on . Posted in Commercial Photography

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©John Tsiavis Move40B728 600x351 John Tsiavis on the Move

©John Tsiavis

John Tsiavis has made a name for himself by his effortless yet evocative portraits of celebrities. But as we all you know, you need to step out of your comfort zone from time to time. When John was asked to shoot a series of images that were “unique in an interesting way” he saw an opportunity to do just that.

Surprisingly many successful photographers did not want to become photographers at first. John Tsiavis is one of them. John wanted to work with advertising. The only reason why he started to take photography seriously was that he needed a portfolio to apply for an advertising course at the university. When he was not accepted at the course, he took the interviewer’s recommendation to show his photographs to the photography faculty down the hall. And from there on one thing led to another.

Today, John is above all known as a commercial portrait photographer, creating effortless yet evocative portraits of celebrities and people of interest, such as Bono, Al Gore, Geoffrey Rush and Rachel Griffiths.

“I enjoy it because it’s a challenge,” says John. “Often with celebrities, it’s a ‘high stakes’ kind of photography. The pressure is really on. You’ve often got a very small amount of time with some huge personalities and you have to come out the end with something unique. When you get the shot you want there’s a great deal of satisfaction amongst everyone involved.”

But John also enjoys the variety that comes with a broader repertoire. For instance, he was recently asked by a client to shoot a series of images that would illustrate the various professions within the media and arts industry. The only requirement was that the images had to be vibrant and interesting in a unique way. So, John left the well-treaded path and set out to create the so-called Movement shots – a series of images that forced him to approach his art from a whole new angle. Read More