Portrait lighting techniques

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Photography lighting techniques: Building Blocks - Step-by-Step Creative Portraits with Jake Hicks.


Part 3 Studio & Indoor Portrait Lighting Techniques explores 8 different lighting modifiers.

Improved Clamshell Lighting
Classic Beauty Dish Lighting
DIY Octabox Ring Light
Editorial Portrait
Rembrandt Portrait
Available Light Portrait
Location Editorial Portrait
Gridded Softbox Artistic Portrait


Outdoor Portraits Tutorial | How To Blend Natural Light Fill Flash
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One of the trickiest things is to blend natural light with fill flash on a sunny day. Just turning your subjects back to the sunlight is only going to give you a dark portrait.

The best thing to do is to use some fill flash and then balance that with the natural light that already is available

All these examples were shot with hard light (bare flash) with no fill to emphasize the lighting techniques. Always remember that these are not rules that are set in stone. Learn how to do them and then start modifying them to get creative! Every one of these can be done with any light source, so don't think that you need flash to achieve these techniques. All about the basics!




High-key lighting in portrait photography produces light colors, while low-key lighting produces darker colors. Learn about high-key lighting and low-key lighting in this free video on photography basics from a professional photographer.