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Class Introduction

Lesson 1 from: Strobe Lighting on Location

Joel Grimes

Class Introduction

Lesson 1 from: Strobe Lighting on Location

Joel Grimes

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Lesson Info

1. Class Introduction


Class Trailer

Class Introduction


Develop your Artistic Vision


Learn Strobe Basics


Which Strobe Is Best For You?


Strobe Questions Answered


Balance Strobes with Ambient Light


The Sunny 16 Rule


Choose the Right Modifier for Strobes


Lesson Info

Class Introduction

So we're gonna talk about strobe lighting, some really fun topics, but before I do that, I thought you know what, who am I? What am I all about really? And so as Kenna said, I've been doing commercial advertising photography for years, seems like I started in the mid 80s, came from the fine arts. I got a degree in photography, but not from a specialized photography school like a tech school, but it was in the University of Arizona, so a fine art degree. So I thought when I went out in the real world, I thought I don't know if this degree's gonna help me, but what that degree taught me was a lot about art history, which at the time I thought, what is that gonna do for me? But knowing what has been done before you is important, as you pave your own path through the world. But that's what I started out, in fine arts, and I was all landscape photographer. So when I graduated in 1984, portrait photography, that wasn't even on my mind at all, it was landscape, I wanted to be Ansel Adams, and...

the large format, I shot big 4x5 cameras. But when I got in the real world, I had to learn how to make a living right? So I got thrust into that and I do a whole session, or I have done sessions, even here for CreativeLive, on marketing and I talk about how I did the transition from being a landscape photographer into portraits. But I've been doing portrait photography now for almost 30 something years, and so I've been beating the same old drum over and over again, practicing, getting people in front of me, and experimenting and trying new things and exploring my own vision as a creative artist. But apart from that, why am I standing in front of you guys? Well, not only do I have a love for photography, I love sharing what I have a passion for, I love passing that on. It's part of my personality. And even before I was teaching, I always had an open door to my studio, people'd come by and I'd just share what I love, sharing what I do, getting people excited. So that's why I'm here. On my blog, I have a new tagline, it's be an artist, live your dream. I want you to fulfill the dream that you have, I hope it is, at least you have something that says I want to be a photographer, I wanna make a living at this or whatever. So that's my goal is to pass that on to you guys. So what we're gonna do is we got a number of topics we're gonna talk about. The first thing that I always do when I talk about anything technical is I want to sort of paint the picture of being an artist, the creative side, because you could be a really good technical photographer, and if you don't have the creative side of things, you're gonna fall flat, you're not gonna make it. You gotta be a creative artist. And so we're gonna talk about that, that's sort of the foundation of what I always wanna build on. I love talking about techniques, but if I just stick with techniques, I'm doing you a disservice, does that make sense? You gotta learn how to be an artist. So that's one of the things I talk about. We're gonna talk a lot about strobes, strobe lighting, strobe equipment, what's on the market today, I've been strobing portraits outdoors since really the mid 80s, and I kinda got fortunate, I had a studio mate who we took a subject and we went outdoors with some portable strobes, actually it was an umbrella, I think the first time we went out was an umbrella, and we did this environmental portrait, and I was like wow, this is really fun. And so then I've been doing it ever since, so we're gonna talk a lot about strobe equipment and what's on the market. We've got to go and cover the sunny 16 rule, if you're gonna learn anything about strobes, sunny 16 rule is important. You may have not heard that term before, but if you've been around photography, you've probably heard that right? So we gotta learn that, we're gonna go and cover how to overpower the sun, so that's important. And then we're gonna talk about modifiers, does anybody in here confused about modifiers, softbox, octabox, all these different options on the market? Well I gotta tell ya, it's still even confusing, because someone comes out with a new modifier, which we'll talk about later, it's confusing, too many options. So we're gonna walk through that, I'm gonna talk about the basics of lighting. I have covered in whole sessions on lighting, we're gonna dive into it, I'm gonna give you the basic fundamentals, but really we gotta sorta just at least dive into that subject a little bit. The other thing we're gonna talk about, well here's one of the examples we did out in the park, we're gonna show the whole behind the scenes, how I did this strobing, shallow depth of field, things like that. Working with ND filters, neutral density filters. This is kind of fun, because what I like to do is look at all my options on the market, and then I say, does that apply to the somethin' that I want as an artist, this technique? And then I go and I fine tune it, I hone it, I work on it, I hopefully I master it, and so I've been working with ND filers now for a while, and so we're gonna talk about the ability to do that. And there's another image that we did in the park. 32 bit HDR portraits, now this is kind of my baby, and people always say, well yeah, but you share everything with 8 bit, why go 32 bit? Well we're gonna talk about that. And the value of what 32 bit brings to the whole created images, and so this is kind of a fun thing, we're gonna have some behind the scenes shots that we did. Here's one of our boxers, Rod, that we did, we'll show you the whole thing there. Here's another one that we did in black and white. 32 bit HDR. And so yeah, lots of hands on stuff, we're gonna hopefully cover just about every basis we can.

Class Materials

Free Download

Gear List

Bonus Materials with Purchase

Bonus Video - One Light Portrait

Ratings and Reviews

Christopher Langford

I love Joel, even though I'm not a big fan of his style. He's a great teacher, really down to earth, and best of all, humble. He's a true professional and knows the business. Even if you're a seasoned photographer, I believe you will pick up some great tips throughout this course. What I enjoyed most from this course was learning Joel's thought processes and how he takes on challenges.

Dana Niemeier

After seeing Joel at Shutterfest 2016, I am a fan. He is intense, but that is inspiring. I especially like the segment using ND filters as I live in Florida where bright sun can be an issue! His teaching method sets the student at ease. You see him make mistakes and then figure them out! Makes us believe there is HOPE for us in the learning process! I also bought his commercial photography class as an add on. Great to see him work and think on his feet. Thanks CreativeLive for giving artists this platform that reaches out to artists around the globe.

Gilbert Wu

I did enjoy the class despite not being used to the American product placement culture. The British say “the proof is in the pudding”, Joel’s pictures are fantastic and create drama. He has the eye. I like his very down to earth approach which is far better than many youtube photographic charlatans. Apart from the techniques he shared, one very important thing I learned from this class is “Be an artist and not a technician”. If you want to learn from people who can take better pictures and more confident and experienced in his/her work than you, Joel is one of those people.

Student Work