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Environmental Portrait Photography

Lesson 18 of 48

Shoot: Action Shots In Studio

Dan Brouillette

Environmental Portrait Photography

Dan Brouillette

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Lesson Info

18. Shoot: Action Shots In Studio
Go behind-the-scenes for studio action shots. Watch as Dan works with a handheld light without a light stand to replicate the look of on-camera flash.


  Class Trailer
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1 Class Introduction Duration:06:15
4 Personal Work Duration:18:36
5 Find Your Process Duration:20:20
6 Tethering Duration:18:35
7 Purpose For Action Editorial Duration:05:19
8 Prepare for Shoot Duration:06:10
9 Action Editorial Process Duration:11:27
10 Set Up Action Editorial Shoot Duration:12:43
12 Studio Portrait Shoot Overview Duration:05:58
18 Shoot: Action Shots In Studio Duration:04:00
19 Review Images in Capture One Duration:14:54
20 Raw Processing Duration:05:24
21 File Handling Duration:05:19
22 Retouching & Color Overview Duration:05:45
23 Retouch Images in Capture One Duration:11:37
24 Retouch Images in Photoshop Duration:07:00
25 Retouch Images With Presets Duration:27:40
26 Advertising Vs. Editorial Duration:04:49
27 Indoor Location Shoot Duration:13:12
28 Indoor Location Shoot Process Duration:11:19
29 Get to Know Your Subject Duration:13:12
30 Test & Frame Your Shot Duration:10:44
31 Create Natural Light Duration:24:33
34 Indoor Shoot Results Duration:19:00
35 Outdoor Location Shoot Goals Duration:16:51
36 Indoor/Outdoor Light Setup Duration:17:27
37 Studio Light On Location Duration:09:56
38 Create Location Portrait Duration:11:41
39 Outdoor Shoot Results Duration:13:26
40 Post Processing Overview Duration:08:42
44 Portfolio Management Duration:28:13
45 Importance of Website Duration:17:55
46 Marketing 101 Duration:18:51
47 What About Reps? Duration:05:54
48 Bring it All Together Duration:10:52

Lesson Info

Shoot: Action Shots In Studio

Now the last thing we're gonna do, and I swear it's the last thing we're gonna do, is we're gonna get out the Profoto B and I'm gonna shoot with that. Because I want him to dribble. And I wanna get, finish up with some studio action. So, the B2s are in this bag. Which is also inside this bag. And, when I shoot with the B2 for that on-camera flash look I use the seven inch reflector, same reflector we just used here, to give me a little bit of control of the light spill but also kind of amplify where that light's going. So, we're good there. The thing about the B2 is it does have a cord so the battery is in the bottom of the pack. It's still all wireless. You don't need power from the wall or anything like that. But, because the battery is down here it makes the actual light head only weigh, so the strobe head itself only weighs about a pound-and-a-half so I can hold it above my camera and not get a workout in at the same time I'm shooting. All right, so what we're gonna do is we're gon...

na hand-hold one, and you could shoot TTL and kind of bracket accordingly. I don't like doing that. I like to have control myself. So we're still gonna go for F8. So in this case, I'm gonna hand you this guy. And you don't have to do anything other than hold it above your forehead. And I'm gonna take a test shot. So I'm gonna know I'm gonna be about right here. One, two, three. Ah, we're at 10. So I need to go down a little bit. One more test shot. Um, see if, there's a button by your middle finger. Click that real quick. And then hold it back by your head. Boom. We're perfect. So now if I stay about this distance from him, we're at F8, we're good. Thank you Brock. All right, so I'm gonna shoot pretty wide 'cause I want some action shots. So, one quick test shot. One, two, three. All right, so what I want you to do is I want you to actually dribble, and, kind of like you're, you're messing around with the ball. Whether you're throwing it from one hand to the other, even not dribbling it, so just scoot, yeah, do that. Look at the ball. I'm gonna keep shooting. Let me, zoom in where I want here. Get the frame I want. There we go. Looking towards camera a little bit. Looking down towards what you're doing. Yeah. So this is that kind of paparazzi on camera flash. So look towards camera. Little attitude. Yep. Looking of to the side. You can turn a little bit. You can dribble. You can spin the, whatever you wanna do. I don't care. I'm just gonna keep shooting. I'm actually gonna go wider. That's why I like using this lens. So kind of get down in a more aggressive stance, almost like we're playing one on one here. Take some really wide dribbles. Okay. That's good for that. 'Cause I'm feeling like, that's pretty, you guys got the idea and I'm getting hot. So, this is kind of a look, there's a photographer named Peggy Sirota out of L.A. She shoots a lot of stuff for GQ. Uses a lot of wide angle lens with this type of light. It has that feel. She shot Kobe Bryant in a similar situation to this. But that's kind of how you achieve that look. I think we're good with you man. You did great. We got some great pictures. So we'll get those to you. But I want everybody to say thanks to Brock here for being a good sport and, (audience clapping) and I think we got some pretty cool stuff. So I'm gonna move this light out of the way. And again with this type of look if you wanted to fill in some of those shadows on the ground, window, you could use this umbrella and fill in more too.

Class Description


  • Confidently create environmental portraits
  • Light any portrait, indoors or outdoors
  • Compose strong environmental portraits
  • Cull and polish high-end images in post
  • Develop a portfolio and marketing tactics


Create dramatic images anywhere by mastering on-location scouting, planning, lighting, and composition. Join professional photographer Dan Brouillette in a start-to-finish course on the art of environmental portraits. From planning and scouting to post-processing and portfolio building, gain the skills to shoot high-end portraits, anywhere. While designed for environmental portrait work, this class is also for any photographer that wants to create better light, on location.

In this light-intensive course, learn how to craft environmental portraits using photographic lighting techniques working with both natural light and studio lighting equipment. Work with multi-light strobe set-ups and natural window light to turn difficult lighting conditions into beautiful light. Then, learn how to mix natural light and studio lights for dramatic effects that complement the scene. By incorporating light in new and inventive ways, Dan will help you push the boundaries of your portraits and improve your workflow.

Finally, work with culling and post-processing. Learn how to polish images using a combination of Capture One, Photoshop, and Alien Skin software. Then, gain insight into building a portfolio and marketing your work to work in editorial and commercial areas for environmental portraiture.


  • Budding portrait photographers
  • On-location portrait photographers
  • Photographers eager to learn on-location lighting
  • Photographers branching into commercial and editorial work


Capture One 11, Adobe Photoshop CC 2018, Alien Skin 2018


Dan Brouillette's high-end editorial style has lead to work with celebrities from Anne Hathaway to Scarlett Johansson. A commercial, editorial and senior photographer based in Nebraska, he's known for giving everyday people the Hollywood look. His previous work as a lighting technician helped him build his signature style using dramatic lighting techniques typically used for commercial work. With an insightful and easy listening teaching style, he helps photographers learn to craft with light.


Julie V

I had the chance to sit in the audience for this class and absolutely loved it. Watching Dan create amazing images from start to finish in front of us was so inspiring. I've learned so much from this class. It actually gave me the confidence to start playing with lights in my studio. It was really useful to see how he sets his lights and how he can easily mix ambient light with artificial. I also love how he focuses on getting the image right in the camera to only do light edits after. I recommend this class to anyone wanting to learn more about lighting, shooting tethered and editing efficiently!

a Creativelive Student

I love this guy! I so appreciate his honesty while he is explaining his thought process, admitting that his “shoulda/coulda/woulda’s” - which I experience ALL the time. I am now going to dust off my light meter and start using it on location as I’m convinced that it works now that I’ve seen Dan’s class. I enjoyed the detailed way he sets up each light individually, checking to make sure it adds the amount and quality of light he wants. Definitely recommend this class - especially for those people who have experience using studio lights and want to see how they can be used to get specific results. Dan’s clear, simple explanations, his unabashed humility, and his sense of humor made this a truly enjoyable way to spend my time learning his methods.

a Creativelive Student

Dan is an excellent instructor! He's completely transparent with his thought processes, from technical to creative. He doesn't waste time horsing around or getting off topic, but is structured and sticks to his outline. Every minute watched is on topic, and is understandable. He's sincere and likable. The course is great for anyone interested in this genre!