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Masters of Photography

Lesson 47 of 54

Studio fashion set up 4


Masters of Photography

Lesson 47 of 54

Studio fashion set up 4


Lesson Info

Studio fashion set up 4

(playful instrumental) So here, we have a set that's very, very simple; it's kind of a fashion 101 set against white, with a fairly high-contrast light, very simple light, just above the line of the lens, on access to the lens, and I'm gonna put Kyler back in there, so essentially, I'm thinking here, it's not a portrait, it's almost like a fashion portrait, so it's a very simple light, very simple set up, but if you control it very carefully, it can be very effective, and as you see, we're still using the black box, which is, under these conditions against white, is really, very effective. Hi, so come on in, Kyler, and it's very simple, just jump up in the box there, remember you're on two apple boxes, and straight to me; that's fine, so I'm just lining up the camera directly in line with him, so here, you have the camera, the subject, and basically the light are in a straight line, just a little bit, very small amount there, and just come down just a little bit, so the first thing y...

ou gotta look at here, is just how deep the shadows are in the eyes, how deep the shadow is here. Maybe go in a little bit closer, so, you have a clamp there? Yeah. We can just use it as a counter-weight here, but maybe you can just even go in there, that's it; the legs, a little bit apart, right, and then even try the hands, and just the thumbs in the pockets there, and very, very simple; the head up, just a tiny bit, but I think not too high, because you should really stay with the camera, so you can almost a little bit, lean forward a bit to the camera; now, I think that we need a flag in there. Just on top, the small flag is good, we might need it on a bigger stand, actually, why don't we use this and bring it in? The big one here, and we can just put it horizontal. Sorry. Go ahead, yeah, go ahead. (clinking) So here, we're just gonna take, we're shooting against white, so essentially here, we have his blonde hair here, very white against the white, so I'm just gonna take a little bit of energy off of the light here, so we don't lose the hair into the white behind, and it can come in quite a bit actually, there, right, go back a little bit here, that's fine, now just slowly raise it there, 'cause it adds the right amount of softness to it; there we go. (footsteps echoing) (shutter snapping) Now try the arms, just really quite strongly folded, there; I think, when you're doing something like this, I think it's important to really look at the shot, remember it's a human being in here, begin to look at the clothing, 'cause I introduced it as a fashion shot, then you'd really want to introduce that, so you should look at small details like the sleeve, here, the shot's a little bit boring through here, that's why I had him fold the arms there, (shutter snapping) and then, probably, the shot's even a little bit stronger if we go in a little bit closer, so I'll do that with the camera; you can always crop later, but sometimes it's very nice to do it in-camera. (metal scraping) So here, Kylar, you can move, you can hold onto the collar, you can a little bit, hold onto the pendant; there are different things that you can do here, you can begin to move around here, a little bit, and see what you want to do here; you can invent something, there, when you find something, always give me a couple of what you find, just to enable me, Okay. Just in case I miss the eyes or something; (shutter snapping and beeping) it's perfect what you're doing, it's perfect, exactly, just a little bit that way, that's it, the kind of the lean was good; just bend, that's it; (shutter snapping) so what you're looking for here, are very subtle variations; body language, 'cause there's nothing else in the shot to look at, he's not inside a car, he's not inside a diner, he's not on the beach (shutter snapping) you keep an eye on what's going on with the lighting, if you remember, I put that flag in there; (shutter snapping and beeping) of course, here it helps, I'm working with a really good model here, so of course it helps tremendously; it's one of the big advantages in New York City, there's a lot of good models here; (shutter snapping) try just for one shot, both hands in front of the face; again, okay, and then hands down; you can try a smile when you feel it, good; well done. (shutter snapping) Just stay there for a while, just there; open the elbows a tiny bit; just raise the flag at the back there, just a little bit, would you? Yeah. (shutter snaps) Good, alright; that's fine, thank you, so if we start to go through this, if we go to the very, very beginning where we started, it's always interesting to see a progression, so if I'm selecting, let's say I'm doing a test for myself, if I look at it here, I'd say well, that here, the black and whiteness is a little bit boring, so in the next frame we went to color, so the color is de-saturated color, so it's not full color; you might even look at this as a de-saturated color shot, and then later, you might put, there's a little piece of coral here, you might put the light back into, the energy, the redness, back into the coral there, but as a starting point, the black box is doing the work. It's creating the shadows on the outside, pencil edging the outsides of the shot here; if you see here, the shadow on either side here, the flag on the top is reducing the light on the hair, so you have a very good silhouette here against white, so this is working fine, so this for me, as I said to you, this is a little bit boring here, so if we start to go through it, I then covered this area here; the sleeves are pushed up, so therefore, you have the skin here, obviously, and then the skin here, which worked very well; we then jumped in a little bit, so I'm still dealing with the fashion of the t-shirt here, and I'm checking the lighting here. So if we go through a few of these, just go through a few, now I actually go back one, now I actually let Kyler go, and he delivers to me what he would do very well, is he'll give me a mood, and an attitude, and you see if he drops his head here, the flagging is still holding onto the hair here, which is good; when he drops his head, the shot's more dramatic, which is good, and it's a matter of letting him go, but keeping an eye on all the elements here, you know, how much skin here, there is, how much of this arm is showing, so you have to keep an eye on everything, not only the face, and then you give him direction to make sure that Kyler knows that you're still interested. You can let him go, but you've got to somehow, hold on to some control here, so if we go through, and you can see with a strong light like this, that he's actually changing the lighting completely as he goes through, by raising the head, or dropping the head; he's changing the lighting completely, and the mood on his face when he does that; the light here is changing all the time, but the reason that that's so effective, the change of light, is because the setting of the key light was very, very good, and that accommodates all of that; you see, go back one, you see here, you can see how his head has gone back, and he's actually gone into the top flagging here, but it still works quite well, and it still has a mood. I mean, even in this shot here, you see a little bit of Kyler's tattoo here, which is very nice, so it's a small detail, but it looks good, and even though the hands are down here, there's something nice about the crop and the energy in the shot, so still, very, very, very, very simple, the whole shot; just keep going, this was just for fun, really, the swing out of the frame is quite good, smile is good; it's the simplicity of this, but the flexibility of it that you could actually use this shooting on several occasions,. Now, if you put a girl in this lighting, you might want to put some softening, maybe what's called a silk, between the light and the subject, just to soften the light a little bit, 'cause it's a strong light, and in this kind of very strong light, men tend to look very good in a strong light like that, you know? But I think that once again, this shot's helped a lot by what Kyler did. (playful instrumental)

Class Description


  • Albert’s tips and tricks on landscape, fashion, portraiture and still life photography.
  • Simple lighting techniques using natural light and studio light
  • Simple tips on preparing for portrait shoots
  • How to create incredible portraits using just two $10 bulbs
  • Albert’s tips and tricks on landscape, fashion, portraiture and still life photography.
  • Simple lighting techniques using natural light and studio light
  • Simple tips on preparing for portrait shoots
  • How to create incredible portraits using just two $10 bulbs


Learn how Albert creates his amazing photographs on location and in the studio using simple explanations.

Albert reveals his shoot secrets on how he photographs Presidents, Hollywood stars, music’s greatest artists, landscapes, nudes, chimpanzees and still life. We follow him on location in Morocco, Paris and in his studio in New York. You will find out where he suggests you look to get inspiration, how to approach a portrait session, see how to light like Albert.

We show you exactly how Albert works on these images after the shoot, it’s all about Albert giving you his ideas and advice and helping you see and create better images for yourself.

It’s not about what camera to use, it’s about how to see and develop ideas, concepts and narrative to make stunning photographs.

As Albert says..."You have to stay switched on"


  1. Meet your Master

    Albert welcomes you to his course.

  2. Learn from the journey

    You will learn how to use your passion and dedication to get to where you want in photography. Albert explains to us how his own journey developed from early days in Scotland to creating the biggest photography studio in LA, and then establishing his studio in New York.

  3. Using inspirations

    Albert teaches you how to use inspiration from your past and present to form you work. Learn his tips on the relationship between technique and creativity, and how to create work that shows your own personality.

  4. Photography is stopping time

    Learn from Albert how he discovered his passion for photography and how to apply his "stopping time" ethos to your own work.

  5. Albert's library of ideas

    Join Albert in his own library where he shows you which books and artists he suggests you look at and study for inspiration and motivation. He also reveals his tip for buying inexpensive photography references.

  6. Tips on preparing for a portrait shoot

    Albert teaches you how to work with your subjects to get a great portrait shot. Learn his tips for putting people at ease when they are in front of your camera.

  7. Setting up the studio

    Learn to control the shooting environment. Learn how Albert begins to set up a studio session. Albert shows you how he begins to approach a portrait session in the studio.

  8. Understanding studio collaboration

    Albert teaches you about his different types of work ranging from test shoots to editorial shoots and advertising shoots. He explains his thoughts and techniques to help you understand how to make each a success.

  9. The importance of casting and hair & make-up

    Albert teaches you the importance of communication between yourself and a team. Albert also explains his tips on working with hair and make up to create a look.

  10. Foreground studio set up

    You will learn how Albert moves out from behind the camera while setting up for a shoot. He shows you how to look at your light from a variety of perspectives.

  11. Studio session with a model - set up 1

    Learn how to work with your subject. A unique insight, Watch and learn Albert working in the studio, explaining his thoughts and showing us exactly how he shoots.

  12. Studio session with a model - set up 2

    Learn how Albert creates his iconic beauty shots. See and listen to Albert as he explains his thought processes when creating this type of shot.

  13. Studio session with a model - set up 3

    Albert teaches you another of his lighting techniques. Watch and learn as Albert explains exactly how he creates a beautiful portrait.

  14. Picking the best shot

    Albert discusses and shows you his techniques for selecting the best shot from a shoot.

  15. Working with photoshop

    In this lesson you will learn how Albert uses post production to further refine his images.

  16. Creating a portrait of Alfred Hitchcock

    Discover the idea and thought process behind Albert's iconic image of Alfred Hitchcock and what it was like to photograph one of the world’s greatest filmmakers.

  17. The gigantic question... Colour or black and white?

    Which should you use? Albert explains his own ideas to you on how and why you might use one or the other.

  18. One day with Kate Moss

    Albert explains his ideas and how he created his iconic images during a day photographing Kate Moss.

  19. Learn to have your ideas ready

    Albert encourages you to have faith in your own creative instincts and how to always think creativity to persuade a client toward agreeing to your photographic ideas.

  20. Using Polariods

    Discover ways to go back and create projects and new images from your older work. Albert shows us the technique he used to create his iconic Running Man image.

  21. Creating beautiful photographs of hands

    Learn to appreciate the expressive nature of photographing hands. Albert explains some his most defining hand shots.

  22. Controlling natural light

    Discover Albert's tips on how to make the most of natural light and how Albert controls it in his images.

  23. Shooting a monkey with a gun

    Albert teaches you to always be on the look-out for new projects, and to recognise the power of conceptual thinking. Learn how monkey and a gun came to be created.

  24. Choosing your format

    In this lesson you will learn about formats. Albert describes different examples from various formats he has used as guidance, discover tips on how to use each type of format and his camera of choice.

  25. Composition and lens

    Get tips and suggestions on which lens to use and when. Albert gives you his thoughts on using the compositional elements available to you in order to produce a better photograph.

  26. Shooting landscapes. The Isle of Skye

    Albert teaches us how for him, its essential to raise landscape photography above the "picture postcard" shot and give the images more meaning. Albert explains the approach to his Scottish landscape series of images, one of his most unique, personal projects.

  27. Planning and ideas for a landscape shoot

    Albert details for you how he carefully prepared for his Isle of Skye project: taking care to be as organised as possible, whilst also remaining open to taking advantage of the unexpected.

  28. Creating still life images

    From shooting bed pans in L.A., to photographing Tutankhamen’s possessions, Elvis Presley’s iconic gold ensemble, and Neil Armstrong's space suit. Albert teaches you to persevere in the face of difficulty, and to always inject your still lifes with meaning.

  29. Photographing the Lost Diary

    Albert shows you how one simple idea can blossom into the creation of true art. An entire advertising campaign was based on his magical concept: that of an intergalactic anthropologist’s photographic diary, depicting tribes on earth 30,000 years ago. Discover how he brought this unique vision to life.

  30. Shooting album covers

    This lesson we go behind the scenes of a shoot with musician Sade. Albert reveals how he produced her beautiful Love Deluxe album cover, and how important it is to make your subject feel comfortable on set.

  31. The Strip Search Project

    Albert tells you how he prepared and created this immense project. He suggests ways for you to create projects and images that document your own corner of the world in images.

  32. Shooting Las Vegas landscapes

    Albert tells you how he prepared for the Las Vegas project, how he approached and shot his landscapes there. He passes on to you how the difficulties he faced helped him, and will help you, to develop as a photographer.

  33. Photographing Breaunna

    Albert tells you how to always be alert to chance encounters. He tells you how he met and was inspired by Breaunna. He explains how some of his most recognisable Strip Search photographs of her were created .

  34. Balancing daylight, God bless America

    Find out why Albert stopped to shoot a bill board. His serendipitous discovery reaffirms his main piece of advice: always remain “switched on”.

  35. Creating the Maroc Project

    Learn how Albert put together his exquisite Maroc book. You will be inspired to create your own projects and to look for potential in every aspect of a project, giving added meaning to your photographs.

  36. Creating the Maroc shoot

    Albert describes his own, personal methods and ethos in creating the Maroc project. Find out what equipment he used, how he documented his journey, and what he shot to create this iconic book.

  37. Photographing sand dunes

    How did Albert capture the breathtaking, rippling sand dunes of Laayoune, Morocco? Find out as Albert encourages you to be innovative; to always strive to add something new and different to scenes photographed by others before you.

  38. Photographing Moroccan children

    Preparation is not the death of spontaneity. Albert explains some his most breathtaking, impromptu shots of children in Morocco, Albert shows you how he suggests you intertwine careful planning and impulsivity to ensure you never miss your shot.

  39. Advice on making portraits

    Learn from Albert that the way you communicate with those you’re photographing is always visible in a shot. In this lesson Albert suggests tips to capture your perception of a subject into a single picture.

  40. How to be alert to finding photographs

    Learn to take advantage of chance situations and moments. Listen to Albert reveal how some of his most famous photographs were created by remaining flexible and alert to what you are seeing around you.

  41. Making a portrait of Mike Tyson

    Albert delves into the inspiration behind his famous Mike Tyson photograph, reaffirming that preparation before a shoot is often key to transforming your vision into a reality.

  42. Creating intense colour in a photograph

    Albert creates intense colour in an image. Listen to Albert as he takes you through his preparation process, and the techniques he used to construct one of his most well known images, Red Devil.

  43. Portraits of rap stars and a Golden Boy

    Discover the relationship between a subject and the camera itself. Legendary Rap stars and Albert’s Golden Boy photograph feature in this lesson. Albert discusses facial geography.

  44. Photographing Jack Nicholson

    A Jack Nicholson photoshoot for Rolling Stone. Albert explains how the legendary snowy shot came to be, and gives you an insight into how he photographed the iconic actor and filmmaker.

  45. Creating a portrait of David Cronenberg

    Be inspired to get creative. Ingenuity and inventiveness take centerstage in this lesson as Albert describes how he produced his unique photograph of David Cronenberg for Rolling Stone — the old-fashioned way.

  46. How to light only using two $10 bulbs

    This is a incredible lesson where Albert demonstrates to you that expensive lighting equipment is by no means a necessity! Discover how to use two $10 bulbs to create a dramatic, high contrast shot. Simply genius.

  47. Studio fashion set up 4

    See the fashion photography master in action as we watch each step of this shoot. Watch and hear how Albert manages the body language of the model and the simple set up and lighting to create a fashion shot.

  48. Studio session with a model. The geography of a face

    See how Albert creates art with the profile of a face. Learn how to work the geography of a face with Albert's simple lighting techniques.

  49. Look inside the picture

    Albert gives suggestions on how to progress and review your photography. Find out his tips on how to look "inside" the picture.

  50. Creating memorability in an image

    Learn Alberts tips on the skill of quick thinking and analysing your surroundings. Albert uses an example where he used his surroundings to create a unique and surreal shot for Italian Vogue.

  51. Combining nudes and landscapes

    In this lesson we reveal one of Albert's very latest projects. Learn as Albert teaches you how he created a stunning series of images by combining nudes with different landscape textures.

  52. A perfect print

    Albert explains where the passion began for printing his own work and how it has developed. Listen to his overview on how critical it is to print an image on the right type of paper in order to create the perfect print.

  53. The business side of things

    Learn how Albert runs each aspect of his business. We travel with Albert to one of his exhibitions in Italy where he explains the why and how of the prints on show.

  54. Conclusion and farewell

    Albert summarises some fundamental learning points he has acquired over his 40 year career. He leaves you with some poignant tips and bids his farewell, "onwards and upwards".


Richard A. Heckler

"Unless you're Mozart"...this course is an invaluable asset. I'm a pro, humanitarian/documentary photographer, & wilderness...and I've learned much from the 40+ sessions here. This is truly a Master best thing to being with Albert. And although I could watch studio sessions forever, this course offered a very balanced curriculum of technical information, artistic encouragement and guidance, and a open, generous window into the thinking of a gifted artist and photographer, sifted from decades of first class experience. Kudos to all involved. Excellent!

a Creativelive Student

I purchased my first CreativeLive class in 2011 and have continued to purchase many classes over the years. I have learned so much from the many great instructors. This one is not a technical class that will tell you to set your camera at f4, 1/60, ISO 400 and you can get this shot. If you are looking for that, there are many other options. If you have a solid working knowledge of photography, this class is so much more. The way it was filmed is like you are there with him in conversation or in the room with him watching him shoot. To see and understand the how and why he does what he does. Not to take anything away from other classes that have helped to give me a strong understanding of photography, this is my favorite CreativeLive class so far.