Help with studio lighting

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by eieiomom, Nov 23, 2008.

  1. eieiomom

    eieiomom TPF Noob!

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    Hello all,
    I am new to the forum but have been dabbling in photography for many years, as I used to work in a lab.
    My question today is probably due to being an amateur and part of it is equipment related but....
    I am setting up a small studio in a spare bedroom of my home to do some portraits for friends. I have very little $$ for the project and purchased a couple flood lights from Lowe's which I was planning to build soft boxes for but upon doing my first test shots I discovered that I have one of two problems, either a yellow color cast, or shadow from the on camera flash.
    Like I said, I don't have much of a budget right now and an off camera flash is not an option at the moment. I tried to adjust the white balance on my camera (a Nikon D40X) which helped, but only while using the flash.
    I was shooting at apx F8.
    Can anyone offer some tips based on the info I've provided?
     
  2. chrisburke

    chrisburke TPF Noob!

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    if your trying to do professional looking portratis, you should not be using the on camera flash.. you really need at least 1 off camera flash... it doesnt have to be expensive, you can usually find them at pawn shops from like 10 or 20 bucks, in good condition. your flood lights are going to cast that yellow color, because they are yellow lights... I would say, that you could easily do a 2 light set up for around 200 bucks.. find 2 flashes at a pawn shop (very easy to do) instead of spending 50 or 100 bucks on light stands, just buy 2 cheap tripods, they work great (i got both of my light tripods for 10 bucks each. buy a wired slave and an optical slave.. the wired slave will likely be the most expensive part.. mine was around 70 bucks, but I know ebay has them cheaper.. and maybe an umbrealla... ebay is by far the way to go, but buyer beware, make sure you check out the feedback first... if you go with ebay, it'll be way cheaper than 200 bucks
     
  3. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

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    If you are using flood lamps with flash you are going to have problems becase you are mixing different colors of light. If you went with all flood lamps you could set a custom white balance to deal with the yellow, or shoot raw and adjust wb in processing. My experience with trying to use flood lamps is that they get too hot for living subjects.

    IMO you would be better off trying to work with natural lighting. You can do amazing things with a window, and some DIY reflectors (white towel, sheet, or foam core).

    http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=simple window lighting portrait&btnG=Google Search&aq=f&oq=
     
  4. eieiomom

    eieiomom TPF Noob!

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    I just dug out my old speedlight that I used to use with my N60...it's an SB-50DX....is there any way to make it compatible with my D40X?
    I'm having a hard time wrapping my brain around all this!!
    I've tried using the natural light from the window but that only works for part of the year and only for about an hour per day!
     
  5. Village Idiot

    Village Idiot No longer a newbie, moving up!

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