Portrait Lighting setup


No longer a newbie, moving up!
Oct 21, 2004
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Southwest Virginia
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Can someone point me to a resource that will give me some direction as to what would be a good starting point for portrait lighting? I've searched through some sites on the internet, but I seem to be finding conflicting opinions. Now I know that part of the problem is that it is just that, an opinion, and people tend to vary their settings to what is pleasing to them.

At any rate, what I am interested in is diagrams that illustrate where to place different lights and at what angle and at what distance from the subject, camera, and background.

Anyone direct me to a good resource for this.
I would like to point out that I am drunk whilst posting, bu here goes: -

For window style lighting

One light with softbox at 45 degrees to subject, should be set up with light meter so that it reads for your desired aperture (f5,6; 8 or 11),

One background light, at one stop higher than your main subject light, this will wash out the background if you're working against a white background) and get you a clear background.

One hair light at about +0.5 what your soft box is at.

Apologies for the drunken post, to resume when sober.
Your community library. I haven't found a decent example of portrait lighting online. (in depth systematic)

As far as learning types of lighting...
After shooting with vivitars for almost a year I came to conclusion that I can't learn without modeling lights.

Since it's only learning, I turn up the ISO to 3200 and with even with a few tungsten lights you get ok shutter speeds at f/2.8 or f/4

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