Some assistance on lighting equipment -

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by JR22, Jun 30, 2009.

  1. JR22

    JR22 TPF Noob!

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    Hello!

    I'm in need of some assistance regarding lighting equipment. I've been doing street photography for a number of years and i'm just starting to step into studio type stuff, teach myself lighting etc. I'm trying to build a diverse portfolio.

    My budget is around $1000, possibly more. I know that's not much in terms of a lighting budget but i have seen some decent (i think) lights for less. I'm guessing i'd be wanting very diffused light for most of my purposes. Portraiture + still life.

    Hopefully they would be portable because i'm hoping to do some location shooting too. I'm probably only after 2 lights right now. I currently own a speed light and D300.

    Some examples of what kind of lighting conditions, if possible, i'd be hoping to create -

    FFFFOUND!

    FFFFOUND!

    I'm just wanting some advice on lights to start out with.
    Is Ebay a good option? What should i be looking for?

    Thank you very much for any help.

    Regards

    J
     
  2. tsaraleksi

    tsaraleksi TPF Noob!

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    I'd start with just one light, learn how to use it and expand from there. Take a look at Paul C. Buff products-- you can find them under the Alienbee and White Lighting brand names. Alienbee offers some pretty nice packages that will give you everything you need to get started.

    To be honest, however, the light in those images looks to me to be window/natural light.
     
  3. 45mphK9

    45mphK9 TPF Noob!

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    I'm in a similar boat. There is SO MUCH information out there that it is hard to narrow down. Please someone correct me if I'm wrong, but if you're doing still life & portraits (not of moving kids), then speedlites would probably be enough. I've also read that speedlites may not have enough power to freeze fast movement.

    I shoot kids & babies, so I'm leaning more toward the strobes. The two that seem to get the most mention are Alien Bee's and Elinchrom D-lites. I read a post on Photogenic lights too.

    I wish I could be of more assistance, but the studio is a fairly new world for me as well. It seems that most recommend not going cheap, but rather start small (meaning less equipment).

    Let me know what you figure out!
     
  4. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    When you are thinking about 'studio' style lighting (or off-camera lighting)...there are a few things to thing about. Firstly, do you want continuous lighting or flash/strobe? I would suggest flash/strobe. With flash/strobe lighting, you can decide between actual 'studio' lights or small flash units...each has it's pros & cons. Studio lights are typically more powerful and are ready made to attach to modifiers like umbrellas & softboxes etc. They do require AC power though. You can run them on batteries for remote use, but the battery packs are big & heavy.
    The option of small flash units is much better for portability. They are small and they usually run off of AA batteries. They probably don't have as much power as a good studio light, but the better ones do have plenty of power. A good website/community that is dedicated to this concept is Strobist

    For studio lights, one popular option is AlienBees: Illuminating the Galaxy with Professional Photographic Lighting Equipment
    For flash units, you can put together a kit, or buy a kit like this MPEX Strobist Kits
     
  5. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    Power doesn't have anything to do with it.

    The duration of a speedlight flash is about 1/40,000 of a second, 5 or 10 times faster than your shutter.

    You might re-read that part, and/or find a better informed author.
     
  6. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Actually, the duration of the flash varies with the power setting...so it is a factor...but your point is still valid. :)
     

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