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Category: New Questions

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Photography Question 
Jill 

member since: 6/8/2007
 

Lighting and Collapsible Reflectors


I am just starting out and am wondering what brands are the best for lighting. I was thinking of getting 2 continuous lighting umbrellas and a 5-in-1 reflector. Is this a good start? Or am I headed in the wrong direction? I noticed eBay had some umbrella kits at great prices - are they OK?
Thanks,
Jill

6/8/2007 1:51:57 PM

 
John H. Siskin
BetterPhoto Member
John-Siskin.com
John's Photo Courses:
4-Week Short Course: An Introduction to Photographic Lighting
4-Week Short Course: Getting Started in Commercial Photography
4-Week Short Course: Portrait Photography Lighting on Location and in the Studio
  Hi Jill,
Continuous light is not very useful. Generally, you have to trade between a high ISO, which means noise or shooting from a tripod, which reduces spontaneity. Generally, inexpensive lights have limits on how much power they have, which reduces the way you can control the light. I have an article here at BetterPhoto about shooting with a single light that you may want to check out: http://www.betterphoto.com/article.asp?id=129. There are also some articles on my Web page - www.siskinphoto.com - that could help. The articles are on the magazine page. I would check out the products from Calumet and Alien Bee. Basically, I like to see people start with a strobe that has at least 500-watt seconds.
Good luck!
John Siskin

6/8/2007 3:49:00 PM

 
Jill 

member since: 6/8/2007
  Hi John,
Thank you for the information. I read your article and looked at your Web page - they were both very helpful and I truly enjoyed looking at your work! I am looking at a single light with 500-watt sec strobe. You used a 42" ribbless umbrella. Is this what you would suggest? One more question: Did you make your reflectors? If so, what did you use for fabric?
Thanks for all your help!
Jill

6/8/2007 8:25:09 PM

 
John H. Siskin
BetterPhoto Member
John-Siskin.com
John's Photo Courses:
4-Week Short Course: An Introduction to Photographic Lighting
4-Week Short Course: Getting Started in Commercial Photography
4-Week Short Course: Portrait Photography Lighting on Location and in the Studio
  Hi Jill,
Iím glad you liked my site! I like umbrellas about 45 inches in diameter. The ribbless thing is not all that important, but the removable black backing is a good thing. I use white cotton broad cloth for the diffuser fabric, and I have had the silver and gold material for so long that I donít remember what it was. There is an article here at BetterPhoto about building the frames:
http://www.betterphoto.com/article.asp?id=156
Thanks, John

6/8/2007 8:44:54 PM

 
Debby A. Tabb
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 9/4/2004
  Jill,
You may also want to use the BP search for this question and check out the other discussions. Also, the Studio Photography threads may be of some help, there are 23 of them. Here is thread #1:
http://www.betterphoto.com/forms/QnAdetail.asp?threadID=17534
Wishing you all the best in this new venture,
Debby

6/9/2007 10:54:45 AM

 

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