Our Most Recent Studio Portrait Course
Image by Brian Simmons
So what makes our course so different?
With most courses, delegates turn up to a ready-made studio with all the lighting and modifiers pre-assembled and all that is required is to start shooting.
With our course, we start from from scratch, delegates have to set up all the lights and modifiers from the storage bags and cases, and thus gain additional experience as if they had bought the equipment themselves, but with the added advantage of also receiving tutorage as they explore the various components. Lighting stands are erected, back drops assembled, lights set up etc.
Once everything is setup we run through the lights, how the background is lit, how it is possible to have three different colours from one white background and then how to effectively light a subject, starting with one light, using modifiers and then progressing to two lights to eliminate shadows and light the subject properly. All the lighting kit used is middle of the range and affordable, which is important given that most attendees are looking to set up a home studio themselves, this ‘setup from scratch’ approach is, therefore, invaluable.
Each delegate is taught to interact with the model in order to get the most from their images, they also take their turns in front of the camera being photographed themselves, an experience which helps them understand, from the model’s point of view, what is required and often how hot if can be under the lights
We introduce the use of a light meter, taking incident and reflected light readings, but also for those on a budget we talk through basic settings and how using a meter is not always necessary and thus saves on buying additional kit.
We also introduce the concept of workflow and tethering to a computer. For this we use Adobe Lightroom and each delegate is able to tether using a USB cable (camera model permitting) and review their image on a larger screen, for the sake of interaction for the other delegates and of course the model, the laptop is connected wirelessly to a 50” TV and images are displayed as soon as they arrive on the laptop. The workflow session also includes correcting for any white balance and exposure issues and the use of Lightroom pre-sets and how they can be used to produce “ finished” images on the fly.
A little added extra - High Speed outdoor flash!
All the delegates were contacted prior to the course and asked if they owned flash guns and had the use of fast prime lenses, when asked why we explained that we would also be be covering the use of high-speed flash and the dramatic results thiscould produce. For those who again did not have either they were advised we could provide kit for their use.This session involved the use of manual exposure and using prime lenses to their widest apertures to induce bokken, all whilst using flash at higher than normal sync speeds, to fill in and eradicate shadows, we even covered the use of the electronic shutter on a Sony A9 for high speed flash.
Image by Chris Mockett
Lastly, time to stretch a little and get creative
Last, but not least, we allowed the delegates a bit of creative time, with one delegate in particular wanting to use a light modifying tool called a “snoot” for directional light. even though this particular lighting accessory was not within our kit list and not wanting to disappoint we fashioned one out of a 'cut off’ from the paper back drop and with surprisingly good results.
Ample time to practice the various lighting arrangements and technique..... *****
I recently completed an "Introduction to Studio Lighting" course with Cameracal in West Chiltington. The course was excellent both in its content and presentation by Anthony for whom nothing was too much trouble. He explained everything at just the right pace and had arranged for most of the activity to be 'hands-on' from the setting up of the studio itself with lights and reflectors to the shooting. With only four learners the numbers were just right giving each of us ample time to practice the various lighting arrangements and techniques involved.Anthony had arranged for a model to attend who whilst inexperienced was charming, co-operative and very quick to respond to direction. Thank you Donna.Ancillary arrangements were very good with ample refreshments throughout from coffee and croissants on arrival a light snack at lunchtime. I learnt a lot that I hope to put into practice very soon and would thoroughly recommend this course by Cameracal. I shall be watching for their future offers. Thank you Anthony, Donna and the other attendees for a fun and 'illuminating' :-) day .
It was a great hands on course... *****
Having just finished the half day…Studio Portraiture Course Having just finished the half day studio portraiture at Cameracal with Anthony I was presently surprised how good it was. Anthony presented the course in a very professional manner. It was a great hands on course with us doing most of the setup which'd helped a lot and the pace of the course was excellent giving everybody plenty of time to photograph the model (Donna) by who was excellent by the way, and to use the studio lights, nothing was too much trouble for Anthony and his vast knowledge really made the course a success. Highly recommend.