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Lightweight Location Lighting

Lesson 21 of 28

Yesterday's Image Review

Kevin Kubota

Lightweight Location Lighting

Kevin Kubota

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Lesson Info

21. Yesterday's Image Review


  Class Trailer
Now Playing
1 Lighting 101 Duration:49:48
2 Lighting Gear Duration:22:13
3 Speedlights Duration:10:38
5 Lighting Kits Duration:16:29
6 Additional Lighting Gear Duration:19:44
8 Postprocessing and Q&A Duration:20:27
10 End of Day Q&A Duration:14:39
11 Reviewing Yesterday's Images Duration:20:24
12 Shoot: First Dance Duration:29:49
13 Shoot: Candle Lit Dinner Duration:31:55
14 Shoot: Couple Portrait Duration:31:44
15 Shoot: Groups Duration:31:06
16 Shoot: Styled Engagement Shoot Duration:28:22
17 General Q&A Duration:24:21
18 Shoot: 50s Housewife Duration:32:20
21 Yesterday's Image Review Duration:20:50
23 Shoot: Steampunk (Mecca) Duration:37:15
25 Shoot: Alley Steampunk (Group) Duration:36:47
27 Rooftop Shoot Q&A Duration:23:57

Lesson Info

Yesterday's Image Review

today we're going to shoot right here in this room whatever this room is it could be your living room could be your client sitting room could be your studio if you have a studio photographer and the cool thing about lightweight location lighting what we're using the tools we have is that you really can take it anywhere so this could be uh used in a studio environment or I've taken this to my client's homes and set up in their living room and make it look like a studio environment or just use their own environment as a backdrop and the nice thing about having lightweight easy to move tools is that you can do that you know you don't have to bring giant studio strobes and set up and feel like you're invading their space it's really pretty quick and easy to set up and uh I find that to give me a lot more advantages to be and to feel like I can go anywhere and set something up and really you could go into the ugliest place possible and throw out of a background or just blow out the backgrou...

nd via shallow depth of field like we did a lot yesterday at the at the stables a lot of those backgrounds were so busy that I really don't want to see everything there I mean it has a lot of light in texture and all that so that's great for just shadows and shapes and colors when you just stopped down two to eight or one one eight or one four then almost anything can be a great background you just have to kind of squint your eyes and look around the world like wow look at that cool whatever that is over there that's my background that's kind of how I pick out background sometimes I might walk around like this you know this's why have this flat spot on the top of my head from tripping into running into walls it's walking around like this all the time looking at ok that make a cool out of focus background so see the world with different maybe today that's all walk around like this okay finding stuff to shoot against like right here through these shapes of these two things what are those over there that would make a great yeah that's the zoom in on that right there look at how beautiful they are right there okay so first of all before we get started here let's review just real quickly what we did yesterday so those of you who were not in yesterday or we didn't get a chance to look at all the images a few of them I did tweet them or enhance them why we're on the set and what I'm doing to enhance these all real quick either done in light room and photo shop for one of the other but I always use my presets or my actions only because I don't want to spend a whole lot of time on these you know you saw how quickly we adjusted them yesterday we could do it if you're shooting tethered in the studio like this may literally you could have your finished image before your plan's finished changing to a different pose you know if you really wanted to do it that quickly not that I'm saying that's what you should do because it's not always good to show clients how quickly and easily this is to dio because I'd be like hey I just paid your thousand dollars with you took you two minutes all right but you know what picasso said right yes something like that I quote him exactly it was something like that all right so we started off our day with setting up a romantic a portrait like a first dance kind of a setup and how he would set up a first dance dropping the background exposure down a bit so it's kind of moody and we threw a spotlight up top with the road grid on a speed light and then put a speed light behind them and shot various poses and that's just one of the ones that I like from that scene where the light was actually flaring through between them right and highlighting her veil and putting that nice little ej light all around them and that's really really important to make them pop from a dark background if we didn't have that edge like her veil on the right would just get lost into that black right and it just adds more of a romantic twinkle sometimes you're gonna get the flare so that it actually obscures part of someone's face because it's just so bright there but if it feels good if it feels like a great moment that's okay and you know that's one thing that I think one of the lessons that I learned and I just share the story real quick there's there's an image they have that I shot maybe ten years ago of a bridegroom in a mustang and I sat on the back of the mustang and there's a whole big story about this but I'm going to be the way we ran away from the wedding reception at a most inopportune moment because I saw this convertible mustang and I had to have a shot the bride and the groom and had in my head you know driving the car and they're kissing and her veils blowing and we're ripping down the road and the trees are blurred out and I was I could see it from the back of the car looking down on them so I jumped on the back of the car put the seat belt over my foot basically was all that was holding me in there and sat up on the back trunk on this convertible mustang sixty five and we start speeding down the road and I'm yelling instructions and he starts kissing on her but they couldn't hear me because the wind was blowing so allowed them like that they're just they're just doing whatever but then the veils blow one and there gotten a kiss and there's like these sun reflections all over the place and like yeah so excited so I got the shot and I got it back and like I love this had made a big huge print and I took it to a competition and entered it in a print competition at one of these organizations right and I'm like hi ass awesome so when that thing came up the judges looked at it and then they go one of the judges said a professional photographer should know how to make a sharp photo and I was like oh ouch but it's not supposed to be sharp this is like all about the movement that energy and and so the judges said yes that's true it's really has a lot of impact but it's not really a hundred percent sharpe and that's s o they you know raided it down and in one of the judges who is the late great monty zucker uh who is that one of the most traditional and yet fabulous photographers that ever was he was on the judges panel he didn't say that and when that they sent it around he said wait a minute bring that image back bring it back and had them bring it back around he said and he stood up and said that this image is all about the energy this is all about passion the fun it's not about sharp it was sharp it wouldn't even work it wouldn't be the same and he fought for it and convince the judges to raise it just a little bit so I got like a passing score if it but the funny thing was he was like uh I was like so impressed with monty first of all but I went home and I said you know what screw it I love this image and I make a huge one put on my wall and that image has sold me so many weddings over the years because bridegrooms come in and they don't look at it go off only was sharp they look at it go we want to do that we want that and I don't know how many convertible mustang shots I've done for brides and grooms since that because they see that they go we want that we want that so was really they didn't care that it wasn't technically perfect and that's what I want encourage all of you guys is that if you love something don't let the technical things hold you back just go with what you love because that's if a talking for your artist you're not a technician some photographers are technicians but I want to talk to the artist in you as a photographer and that if you love it it makes you feel good if it just feels unusual interesting it's you go with it and don't don't care what anybody else says because if I listen to the judges I would have hung my head in the sand took that picture off the wall and never shown it to anybody but it did and again maybe thousands and thousands of dollars over the ensuing ten years so listen to your heart okay here's another little full length version uh process this one with more of a vintage style feel this one is actually using the retro luscious preset in the light room presets and a similar set up on lee thing I did was go full length and one thing I do love about having this backlight is that see the glow behind them on the floor I really love that feel it just kind of silhouettes them a little bit mohr adds a lot more mood and we've got still the great little highlight all around her there so that's a great set up you can use it a dance wedding reception of the first debts whether you set it up and shoot it before they start dancing her after or whenever or if you manage to just set a little light on the tripod in the back on the grill a pod and then have your assistant with a stick following them around you can shoot that while they're dancing and we've done that many times to just shoot him while they're dancing with the lights preset okay then we set up a little romantic dinner table which would simulate there having their dinner together at the reception and a lot of times that's where I'll do portrait's of the bridegroom is right at their tables I don't have to take them away or whatever we just pull into their table will bring up my light have one in the background and light it off so this was using a quick box which is a small pop up soft box with the speed lighted it right up above coming down in the bride's face following her nose and notice we did put a bunch of junk in the front here or I did rather had a candle in a little chair in the front and this is part of something else that was shooting through to make it look like again like you're just peeking across you just happened to find this moment and catch it and that's the beauty of shooting through stuff is that it makes it feel more candid even if it's totally set up which this is right and I think it has a whole other feeling to it then if all that stuff is out of the way it would feel much more like a set up shot and so it's okay to set it up but if you don't want it to feel set up then put stuff in front of you they didn't like pinky holds over there I just noticed that he's like holding her little finger or something next week so we had a speed light behind with the warm sticky filter gel the speed light above had a warm sticky filter gel on it to match the candlelight so they could have its close toe white balance the same but I did keep everything warmer then we went to the couch to do like a nice big window light feeling we had the double size scrim seventy seven inches across with a light trick um uh battery powered head behind the scrim to just make this big wall of window light and that's a really nice versatile lighting setup and we're going to do something similar to that a little bit different today and I purposely wanted to slightly overexpose and blow out those windows just for the kind of brightening effect that it would give to the image and the ej alight the hair light from the windows is all the natural light so we're just using one big scrim and then I think we added in at this point or the next shot somewhere around here we started adding in a fill light as well with one speed light bounced into the roof of this place so just played with variations and the one reason I wanted this big light source in this couch is I wanted them to be able to just play on the couch and if she wanted to move here lay down sit up on the edge turn around whatever that the light would be okay for whatever she wanted to do and that's the benefit of a big light source a big soft light source especially is that your couples or your people or even your kids if you're shooting kids can move without you having to worry about chasing them with the light in your exposure changing so much as they move from one spot to the next all right so just some variations on that as they played on the couch there very cute couple so snugly but I'm so allowing her to climb up sit down lay down move anywhere on that couch and the light would still be saying we didn't change our exposure uh I don't have to adjust anything as she moved around to different places on the couch and play with the poses and something more traditional is well these air most of these air process with creme de la creme you can see the preset history on the side here creme de la creme was a preset okay so there's my original and after creme de la creme preset or some of them were sixty five mustang some of the black and whites here one my favorite black and whites uh is a switch back here black and white hollywood pre set which is this one here so added on that that's in her light room collection so there's original on the black and white so black and white hollywood no one uses the same okay then we did our engagement couple tow them outside and did kind of a life style fun day out shopping kind of a set up and this little bitsy shop was generous donator of goodies for us to play with at the trailer park mall which is a definitely unique fun place to shoot engagement session so we wanted to give them time to just play set the scene where we're walking into and again a lot of it is just them interacting it's not so much portraiture although we did do a couple of more traditional portrait's of them as well so this was primarily natural light to start then they as they were playing here you can see the presets on the side this is sixty five mustang preset on this one original images there but this had a real vintage kind of a feel to me kind of ah you know it needed something kind of punchy almost like across process but not during the color's off so much so I thought the sixty five mustang that serious I have my vintage elish work really good for this set up and we started to add in a rim light or a little hair light edge alight with a speed light over here just add a little bit of edge on them as they were playing they're a cute couple too and again here I'm shooting through you can see the fence in the foreground and kind of peeking through it again same thing to make it feel like there is no photographer there they're just having a great time and you're peeking through the bushes and here you go there you are playing and having a good time so you can see now the edge light right here in the back of the monte uh this little light back here is from the speed light the delicious holding right here with the grid road grid yeah just enough to kind of separate him from the darker background and just give a little poppet make it feel like sunlight because you guys remember there wasn't any sunlight it was pretty flat overcast day so it was just kind of blah lighting which is nice for soft portraiture but it doesn't have a kick anywhere so we wanted to emulate that there maybe was some sign or something coming in the late afternoon sun and that's what that little kicker light did in the back this one was processed with sixties film preset in light room sixties film there's our original on the sixties film preset little black and white no variation of them hanging out reading books to each other black and white mocha preset was applied on that one this one I processed it and light room and then took it to photo shop to do the edge blurred so I wanted to really make it feels almost like the winds blowing her hair we did have a couple moments of the hair blowing but her expression wasn't exactly like so this one here has a little bit of motion feel to it like she's just hard head getting kissed on the neck and all so I just picture this more of a dreamy kind of feeling which is why did the edge blur modified action from my dashboard and photo shop and put the nice little border to stop the border on there nice another little vintage e feel thing there all right so then we started to do just some nice regular portrait ce and the lighting on them is really nice it's directional and chris but it looks like nice afternoon sunlight that's soft and diffuse but it really wasn't because there was no directional light whatsoever was just overcast and blah so we use the easy box where the quick box but it was it was it our octo where's alicia I think was our octo because it was my dog collar was the doctor because we had two flashes we wanted to have two flashes and in my ocd oh mice photo flex small octa dome I can fit two or even three speed lights and I wanted to because we started to use the neutral density filter here to be able to bring down the exposure of the shutter speed to something I could sink with and get the most out of my flash and then we added in this is with the neutral density filter you can see there I shot to send one to hundreds of a second at two point eight now if you're outside in the daylight could you shoot at two hundredth of a second at two point eight s o two hundred not really uh not without a neutral density filter so the reason I wanted to shoot it two hundred was to be able to get the most power out of my speed lights so my neutral density filter let me dial it now into two hundred and dark in my background about a stop stopping a third so that it's more of a moody background and then my flashes I get full power out of my flashes to match with that background so the existing light now at a stop in a third under becomes my fill light so the light that's on the shadow side of her face here this is my minus one ish my someone in a third that's all that I exposed for everything else becomes the fill light or the shadow side of her face and the main light is the box stop and stop and a half brighter and then they put a gorilla pod to that fence behind her with another flash to create the little sparkle which kind of looks again like a little sun or beam something coming across her back of her and this is processed with then delicious preset in delicious there's original and vin delicious okay well um or just classic one there with the backlight behind her as well and non processed I know so that backlight really adds a nice little let little highlight along of the montes face there is really nice separates him from the background as well as of course on her hair which is really important with girls is they're heritage to glow if they have here they don't have hair than don't put a highlight because you have a bald in shiny spot right then we went into the kitchen and had our crazy fifties stepford wife shot kitchen and did have some variations on this and the main thing here was setting the exposure for the kitchen which was a hundredth of a second at s o four hundred you can see it up there and I definitely wanted to shoot close toe wide open with one point six of my twenty four mil so that we could soften the background even with that white angle and I like that look a lot soft sightly soft background on a wide angle with your foreground really sharp so we did a few variations on that and this was using are our quote unquote beauty dish which is the quick box with the round circular face from last light uh stuck on the front the internal baffle removed so you have just silver straight into that whole face or circular face makes a really crisp directional very very very similar to traditional beauty dish and it's a more versatile tool when you're using that quick bucks for other things as well so that's the main light here and you can see of course there's a light on the counter behind her skirt shooting straight back at her toe light up her hair then we had our lovely model in the back washing dishes for her while she enjoyed a soft drink and uh thought that with us we have to give thanks to mike for a modeling job back there looking very like a stepford husband then they should have an idea to light something from the different direction have more moody light on it and I think this was the first shot I took and she took some shots too and she wanted to light up these glasses in the front with some blue jelled lights and like that up there and that gave us a really cool look to a very different moody kind of feel very fifties glamorous kind of thing then we had her serving up some husband head and get a little weird there but that was you know part of finally put a speed light in the refrigerator and I think we still had a single speed light appear with nothing on it just a direct hard light going down to be a little more creepy and we did a just a classic beauty shot with the quick box and a little phil reflector on this side so looking right into her eyes uh nice soft light now with the full quick box up close yeah or it was the octu dome action remember to use the octo alicia for this last one octo because it's build bigger softer light we used the octo small octa dome for this one to get that be like yes you can see that in her eyes there's a reflection of the octa dome right there

Class Description

Learn to create studio quality lighting under almost any condition! With lightweight, affordable, and portable lighting tools, Kevin Kubota will teach you to create beautiful portrait lighting in a variety of environments from typical urban locations to more challenging situations. He'll teach you how to do it using speedlights and smaller, battery-powered lights with simple and affordable accessories to modify and control the light. And after every shoot, Kevin will download and show how he quickly processes and enhances his images in Lightroom and Photoshop before even leaving the scene!


Karen Witter

I LOVED this class and I don't hesitate to recommend it! Kevin did a great job explaining how to incorporate additional lighting for on-location shoots and what those items would be. Then he illustrated those ideas for the class in various types of shoots. I loved the gear he recommended and especially his DIY suggestions. He has a great sense of humor and I felt like I was right there in the class. I would highly recommend this class to anyone who shoots on location and wants to make sure they're not only using the best lighting options but also the best lightweight lighting options.


I am enjoying this course so much!!! I am 100% happy with it. I just became a big fan of Kevin ! Great personality! Makes the use of flash a breeze. I just want to go outside with my gear and have fun now! thank you.

Maxx Walske

This workshop is fantastic! Kevin goes over every little detail you need to know for Lightweight Location Lighting. He shoots during the workshop, instantly shows the image and talks through how to see the light and make the proper adjustments for a fantastic image. He includes details about all his gear and post-processing tips, too! Kevin is incredibly inspiring! The course is easy to follow, fun and worth every penny!