Lighting for Boudoir and Glamour


Lighting for Boudoir and Glamour


Lesson Info

Shoot: Vintage Boudoir

So what we have here is a really cool vintage set. I do a lot of stuff like this for myself and for other people, self assignments or things that I do on a regular basis. I would suggest that at least four to five times a year, you do big, orchestrated shoots for yourself and make images that not other people are shooting in your area so that you stand out in alone and different in the crowd. I'm not suggesting that you go and make a bed just like this, but your own concept of something like that. Thank you so much. So in this particular scenario, it was important to me that it looked like it was used and it had been there for a million years. The background in itself. I'm going to sit here to the sides that you can see what we actually created here. Can you guys see this all around? Um, it's a twin bed and a standard bed frame with some classic sheets on it, a pillow and then died cheesecloth limbs from the woods frame built on gluten. You screwed together. It took some time to do it,...

but, um, I'm gonna take this is somebody's house no, this is a studio thing and what I shoot this on more than one person, probably not but what you might want to think about doing it using a real model on that particular day, you're gonna go to the trouble. This is going to be an impact shot when the person calls you now to do this shot. This is how this is classic beauty. This is becoming art, so you could raise your price to compensate for your efforts when that person finally says, I want one of those, I really want one of those. So when I create all these chutes that you're seeing here, people say that to me, the first one I do, and I am willing to show it to everybody. The more you show it, the more people talking about their cloud is you see that I'm not josh, I want to do something like that. What happens to me with these shots? His clothing designers called me, then magazines call me, so you're building intensity with the intensity of the images you're going to shoot plenty of people that you don't need to put in your portfolio, but it's money in your pocket, but you want to have images with impact and photographs that really make a big statement. So for what we have going here, this particular set up, we have a beautiful background from denny it's, all in the same color family when you go to buy backgrounds. You know they were not super cheap, but you want to make sure that you buy something that you can use in a million different ways if this set wasn't here, I could do some incredible corporate portrait on that background it folds up to you wantto pick up one of those things behind you show how small they fell down to its made out of a washable fabric and if I take him out and put him out on a farm are somewhere like that and I wanna wash it they fold all the way down to this size if I'm going to shoot a wedding on the destination guess what? I packing my bag in case it rains a couple of these and some eight clamps because I can hang it over a balcony is the background shoot portrait's outside natural light? So these things are very functional the first couple of times I saw them I'm like I don't know let me see got one been teo and I have about fifteen of them but colors that go well, you know, the first one I bought was the grey one you saw in the headshot on lorraine I cannot tell you how many times I've used that background and it's been washed the washington in two or three times and I've hung it up shot video in front of it it makes for a beautiful background stars start with neutrals so you have guilt free could match anything to it by one two three and then give yourself a little space to work and get your lights tested and start building on your look this kind of stuff is important to me just because it gives me a feeling gives me a concept to go with it so you want to come on out and lou before you get started shooting would you mind talking through your lighting setup for the sheer absolutely so this whole thing started with what did this start with the necklace I was like I have to have the necklace actually it started with the collar I was with lindsay and we were in new york walking through the shops of where you get all of the edging buttons any kind of finishing strips that laced ribbons all that kind of stuff it's in the garment district new york and I started seeing these things and I'm like oh what an awesome vintage piece I had the course that then I found this vintage and we started building everything on top of all of that then the outfit and the set came together based on all the colors you see in that so now I've got lighting setup you're not goingto actually sit on the bed I don't believe that you're going to be interacting in the bed I just thought tell you that to start with so what I have set up here I think you guys can see all of the lights is I've got my speed, lights set up and somewhat of a split light or a rembrandt style setting. We have a small something step right up into the bed there, right in front with a little tauron places, um, scoot right over there in tonight post they're great, so I'm going to start her about there, I might have her lean on the bed, sit on the bed, but I'm not going to actually lie her down in this. I would start this, shoot it three quarters and have her do all kinds of beautiful things with the poses and placement of her hips. We have three speed lights on this set. We have a strict bank down on the side with the grid, so the light goes directly at the side of her body and doesn't spill all over the set. The orb here is gonna light her face and put some beautiful shadows that will fall with a little shadow underneath and knows there's not going to be a lot of feel like on the bottom of her face, the background there's one more stripping is facing toward the background, all powered from my s t e three trigger here I'm set in group mode, and I have each light sent on a different channel abc r each for each light I usually number the lights, my key light will be on a the kick light will be be in the background light will be see if I'm working on my five day three I have the choice of also adding the e I want to put a hair light or more light on the background that I could build that in that way after I take the first shot, if I decide I want to add more light on the kick from the side, I can make that adjustment by simply going in to the tt l setting here and adjusting it plus or minus for that light only without ever leaving my stick my such situation. So this is working as a master and it's telling each one of these lights exactly what do based on what I've pre programmed in it here. So those settings khun stay like that let's say I did this stunning here and I know tomorrow I'm going to go to somebody's house and do the exact same setup if I use the same strobes that are programmed with those settings and put him back in my case with a marked a, b and c guess what happens? I can put him back in the same spot, but the trigger on and I don't have to find my way through settings again so once you see something that's magic you can have the choice of saving that and loading it on here if you start fumbling with it and you know doing plus or minus and things like that and adjusting things you can always go back to the menu setting and hit loaded it will reload it back to the standard setting that you start with that's pretty cool I'm a person that uses my speed light on occasion now I'm using them all the time so I want to make sure that I can get back to my safe place and not be stressed out about that it takes a little bit to prepare to set it up on what you learn how to do it you should be able to do it in under ten minutes find your way through it the back of your speed light in the top of the trigger basically have all the same settings but they appear a little different when this isn't master and that is enslaved mount so that'll be the a little bit of trick you have to remember too you call yourself oh yeah I'm setting the master and it looks a little bit different than the back of the soleil so let's let's look take a look at what we have set up here that's so pretty so all of this stuff was not this color I t died the outfit coffee died the outfit right ultimately and including the course it and the underwear was all a bright white and I knew I wanted to do the set so I matched everything to it uh so really the only thing that was purchased was the ribbon and this beautiful necklace is sitting on top everything was used or vintage in some way uh resurfaced a recycled I should say um sorry if I turn a chair and sit down for you guys so I've also put some creative color jails road on the actual heads inside each one of you the soft boxes so that there is a theme kind ofyou see how warm this is I can adjust that a little bit when I get into photo shop if I want her in light room to kind of cancel out that or make it more black and white if I'd like but I wanted it to really feel like an old sea pia image right straight out of the tube for playboy we used cdo jails full and half on dh for this we're using the scipione on the front line are the key light and the backgrounds have more of a bronzy jail that's from rogue and I can show you the jail when we're done you look so beautiful all right? So I'm sitting a little lower here than her headshot because I'm going to crop right at the knee let's turn put all your weight on your right foot put your left knee in front of your right knee. I usually choose to curve the body and s shape. I talked about how curves are much more sexy than straight line and you want to do your very best to elongate the body so anything that you can do to do that with that pose is going to be to your advantage. And can you hold that? Put your maybe just changed the position of your fingers? Maybe get your thumb around that's great and just rest it right on your chest. Beautiful. Your key light is this way. So why don't we switch your feet and do it the other way? Turn your whole head and everything around that direction you just position this a little differently. So beautiful. All right, lovely great hold still for me, right? And have my ready light set so that it will tell me audibly it's really pretty let's. Go ahead and turn your head right into this big light here. Yeah that's beautiful. And can we position this line on the ground? Just a little bit more around to the side. So what I'm trying to do is have foreground background middle ground. Do you see how the shadow is rotating around the front of her leg and there's a darkness on the front that's giving her leg shape and form and making it have a slimming effect the orb is liking this side of her face and the whole front of the gown I have the sidelight up just a little higher so you can really see that texture in the ways the background over to your right is balanced to the same exposure on the left side of your eye visually bounces back and forth from one portion to the other with that particular shot there's getyou over just a tiny bit this way away from that and maybe take your left hand push the road back and put your hand right on your head great keep your fingers nice and tall lift your chin up beautiful awesome you lay the fan right here on your leg beautiful it's so gorgeous the set stunning great how we flashing now? Beautiful. You have to wait for the actual recycle button so I think that's lovely let's do a couple just for fun just so they could see what a difference it makes let's take the jail off this lever here relax just a second different front and lou, we would love to hear about well about your settings what white balance you using in particular for this? Because it is a little bit more silent absolutely I like to keep my white balance set on fifty two hundred because that's what the cleanest white light that I like to start as a base since there's so many warming jill's on there, it may be too warm for that. So what I'm doing now is pulling the gel off so you can see a comparison and we'll look at the shot side by side you personally may not like all the color in the war, but I love that I think it makes it have a little bit more greedy edge this would be really fun to get into and just start playing with your photo shop on this in manipulating a little bit my settings at this point I'm shooting an f four sixty for a second I s so one sixty on the reason being is I don't want to put too much focus on the background even though it's all we've got all that trouble, I wanted to be a part of the dream or the vision the fantasy we're creating but not to take over um that's also one of the reasons why I'm shooting with a longer lens so that that also can happen. So we're really creating fantasies now when we step actually we were had fantasy going here to the white cloud bed sort of thing over to this more complicated same number of strobes totally different effect so let's take it are you done all right, let's go right back into doing the same kind of thing keep your face into this light beautiful and we'll probably shoot some beauty shots of this too can you put your front foot tip toe a little bit more and front and out toward me beautiful exaggerate your hip a little bit out to the side more so you might choose to not warm it so it would really be up to you it's kind of hard to decide for me I love the golden glow so the course it gives the body structure I use a lot of course it's because I feel like it puts a little bit more impact into the outfit I think structure makes everyone's figure look more polished and if you're shooting mature women it could give a waistline when there really wasn't one and corsets that lace up can be bought in one size and are adjustable and you can put just about anybody in them no matter how what size they are and then you khun if you get neutral colors black rat burgundy red why they will go with just about anything that the girls will bring for you too two pair it with um so let's jump in that light's been turned away from her can you turn that back toward her a little bit and let's have the cake panel do a beauty shot so if you find yourself nervous that question that was asked earlier a really great way to start these shoots is to jump in and shoot the beauty shot first if you shoot the beauty shot first, the makeup is fresh then you start communicating and you're just dealing with this part of the body less to direct so if you find yourself nervous, start with a beauty shot and then you're not looking at the hands and the arms and the feet the legs and the set in all of these things get your light tweet perfect test it put her on the set shoot twenty twenty five pictures of beauty when you feel like you have a beauty go back and sit in a chair shoot three quarter if it's beautiful enough to shoot to the ground to go across the room and sound floor and then shoot all of it then you can add the pose because you know what angles going to grin on her face got it just like take the whole edge away and the stress is completely gone alright so jump right in and let's try to be shot put the fan like right up on the edge beautiful turn into the light this way beautiful, awesome stunning I am going to raise the I s o up here a little bit and change things up just a touch. All right? So by doing those changes just then I can do that from the camera and it's automatically runs all way around set that's so pretty so I just raised up the ice so a little bit so I could get a little bit more light in there a little bit uh closed down on the exposure so let's turn you on a different angle that's great you can turn into the light and flatten this out a little bit this time great beautiful pusher chan out toward me a little bit squint your eyes down about beautiful hold on one sec beautiful something else that I do when I'm shooting is once I finish drop your chin down and maybe hide behind the little fan good right on the edge good smile with your eyes for me just a little bit beautiful hold on great relax for just a second so sometimes when I'm shooting I'll find that I can't get the camera to focus and I've got a long lens on I'm just simply too close to the subject you guys ever have that happen my camera's not working when you're using a longer lands there's usually a minimum focus length and you want to make sure you're aware of that so don't get stuck in that as well so what I might do next is let's lose the fan so you know the number one thing I see people having struggling with the most is getting someone at one pose and shooting the whole shoot in the one pose after the goal of trouble and then there's not an amazing uh pose achieved she's just now getting comfortable enough with me that I could actually start to really shoot um so let's jump in and to sit right on the edge just said on one hip great beautiful you was going up a little closer to that beautiful make yourself long and tall and you can use your hand here on this roof fabric if you want beautiful just gonna pull that up close to your face can we adjust that back toward her it's just kind of aiming over this way it's not must not be tied we're turning on its home just beautiful fingers so see how pretty her fingers are on an angle like this holding it like this is claw like are like that so rotating the fingers in slightly bin and you just shake it out reattach and if somebody's really stressed and they're showing you that stress there it's always a good idea just to keep redoing that and usually if they're holding their breath I'm holding my breath to I still after all this time still get the energy that they share are in part so you wantto just kind of relax through it a little bit so just rotate your wrist around sideways so I'm looking at this out of your hand good just barely straighten up your fingers they're bent a little unevenly like that's great that's beautiful maybe should we should switch because your hand in the light so maybe put your elbow around behind the background to keep your body back to the side and turn more like that beautiful can you rotate up on the top of your hip? We liked your neck when you had this way a little bit beautiful your hands are lovely they're beautiful uh standing away from my little ready beat beautiful let's relax for just a sec we have a little too much light there were here I would move it away for me and it also needs to have the jail removed to take it all the way off so now I'm starting to see how all the things that we went to the trouble to create the lace of the dress filling the frame I'm not loving the orange gel in the front the cto so now that we're moving in the sort of art thing I'm pulling away from that a little bit my taste levels changing is I'm shooting it so I'm going to pull that away I love it on the background so let's just keep it at that shoot just a few more and then I'm actually going if it's safe, I'm going to have to get right up on the bed but isn't it lovely all the texture around the edges including the lace on the top in the dress you could actually are you okay? Yeah all right, beautiful. Do you mind pulling off the edge of the shoulder? So you're the strap shows just like this one hang off his shoulder that's really? Pretty let your fingers down on your leg we fingers together and tippy toe both feet and you're kind of sitting back like this. Can you roll your hips forward? That's great, beautiful and let's. Um, just pull this light down just about that much. And then you turn your head into it. Roll your shoulder up, put your fingers together on your hand there. Beautiful. Take a peek. Lovely thinking family there to where we'd like to be. Maybe I think it's probably fine. Just a position in a little bit toward the front of the carpet. Beautiful. All right, so I am going to I was checking my settings here, just like you know what? I did a cz we set it up. The main light is up about two tenths of a stop for three tenths of a stop higher on the background light is almost a half stop. So it's actually showing if you see where their position is further away and it needed that to make the impact so we could actually see the light back there, um, as you dammit more attention will become come onto her, um I'm not sure if you would want teo make the edges dark I have a tendency to go for that when I'm actually working on things and post so that all the attention is right on her don't you bring your hand up really close and just really beautiful absolutely beautiful let me zoom in for a beauty awesome let's do one more hold on beautiful one more sorry you wait for my beat the finger protect together on the leg there when you're fit pinky down beautiful awesome relax for a moment lovely I have any questions lou we're speaking a little bit off line about which should save her for here they heard the question white balance come up again do you often find as opposed to putting orange gels on everything you may be cool down your white balance or warm up your white balance morn just use a ct be instead of cto or is it jill to overall if you want a pure white balance I have a tendency to do it all or nothing um in this particular case I had a tent we took it off on the front and left it on the back. Ultimately what will happen is I'll go in and warm that up and lighten that up and tweak it in my photo shop and then that will fall into sort of a neutral nous in the background I overall like things slightly de saturated so once I put all of that in there is to get the color leaning that way, then I just remove the intensity of the orange altogether overall, her scandal come up creamy white when I get to that point exposing it, I'll even bring that up a little light and then pop in a black to help me redefined the edges, so I kind of pull it all as faras I can tweak it on the post production work and that's what you see in the overall look this in fact, if you guys want me to work on one of these, I'll show it to you tomorrow, so but, luke, could you talk a little bit a couple questions about your settings about why you're using, for example, you're one sixtieth. Why aren't you at the max sinks speed, for instance? Uh, what what are your what? Your thoughts regarding years your settings, I have a tendency to like tea, usually about my f stop it's where I began everything. If there's no light in the background that I'm considering is part of my exposure and I'm completely setting the lights myself, then I make the settings based on the f stop I wanted chief I tryto work around on beauty shots around five six sometimes I'll go all the way to four if I want to keep all the attention right on the eyes, if I'm shooting and like the white bed staying here with her down into the sheets, I might choose to shoot it all what more wide open and stop so everything kind of falls to blur except just her eyes for the intimacy of that in this particular setting, I wanted to get up to about five point six from four, so I'm start everything at s o one sixty the native eyes, so for cannes, and then I go up to three twenty and then from there, if I have too much depth of field and I'll make my adjustments on the light, so it's kind of simple, I do the same thing pretty much repetitive on every scenario to start with the ambien. If there is none, I create it, and then I work with my death, the field in color. Can I see what the contact sheet looks like? You absolutely exactly what I would do if I were in my office, I would be doing the same thing. So if we could bring up the group of images, we've got a few in there where was shooting ahead of the flash, but you can see now, even on her leg there, how there's definition on the light on her leg but it's not over exposed like it wasn't beginning so out of all of them that was the last one is probably the best best image uh the bottom right and the beauty shot with their head down and into the camera I chose to shoot at horizontal so I could have a feeling of all that cool stuff that was going on in the background so out of those all of those minus the ones that didn't fire the last one in this first one of the ones I like the most in this one here on the end with three out of that so okay great how about a question from the internet like all right, this one is from on ly one roz who says liu you are an inspiration I am so interested in that I'm a lugging around my ipad and listening with one ear but in case I have two year old twins and a baby on I was wondering how you decide between when you use continuous flash continues lights versus slash it's a matter of the look for the continuous lights I love to work with studio light from bowen's and the mosaic panels because how quickly the light falls off it has a wonderful glow to it and an essence that's just silky smooth looks really great when I'm doing glamour shot and I have a sheen applied to the scan just kind of makes everything glow I can also have the light exactly where I want it and if I want it to fall off and be a part of my expression of art than it works really well for me, I can also take both of those lights and emulate daylight very easily by where I positioned the lines. So in a way perfect world, a great for video and still for may so if you're in that ballpark is probably not one of the other, but maybe if you can afford to have those in addition to your studio lights or speed lights it's probably a good idea, I would say out of all of the lighting I used mostly my studio lights when I go on location and I have individual boudoir she it's like we're doing here, I might take my speed lights for ease and get around if I'm trying to make art and more fashion driven things or emulate son when there is no light at all, I'll take on the studio lights we love that we have anything from in here, ok, we have one from maleness who was asking if you could again show and maybe we can use the white bed for this, but we were wondering, what are those do not shoot angles when using abed? What are your preferred and what are your do not shoot these angles he looks so pretty sitting there I do not shoot angles when I shot for playboy I'm just going to give you you know we did the standing lying down horizontally and you saw me shoot her lying on her back well I was shooting down across her body do not shoot angles somebody's laying this way their head is here in their feet or towards you aimed at there if I whatever you put in front of the camera closest to cameras going to get bigger that happens in reality as well but if you have inappropriate lands on there or twenty four two one o five or seventy and that's a scenario you can actually make somebody's legs look bigger waist bigger a lot of people stand up to shoot everything and they stand in a perfectly erect way with the camera in the hand and the model might be in front of them standing and she's five foot four were automatically looking down and again if you have that inappropriate lands you're gonna have little short squatty legs and a big head so if that's the only land you have is a twenty four to seventy or twenty four to one in five you want to be sitting down and at least have that distortion see you're fit in your favor to make him look taller so the lower you get the opposite reaction what happened so I never ever shoot anybody straight with their bomb straight in the camera. Um, it's usually a side angle, because I believe all the curvy lines on a woman's body on the side to cover the hip. The curve of the breast is the curves, and the shape can be seen there. If anybody is completely slightly heavy in hips or legs, or short squatty through here, straight on with the legs bent back, emphasizes that and straight on from the back. So the more curves and swerves you can put on someone's body. The more you take, the I wail from those imperfections, so exaggerating as shape, keeping that camera straight at the body.

Class Description

In this workshop, award-winning fashion and glamour photographer Lou Freeman, who has shot more than 500 campaigns for Playboy, will walk you through the fine arts of glamour and boudoir photography, including the techniques specific to both categories. You'll learn how to shoot from a variety of angles, when to shoot in hard and soft light, and how to use speedlights for powerful highlights. Lou will walk you through blockbuster boudoir concepts, from edgy black-and-white shoots to vintage, pastel beauty shoots.

Lou will unpack 35+ years of industry knowledge, arming you with a treasure trove of techniques and creative concepts to take your photography to the next level.