Sunlight in the studio without daylight

I see many product photographs where they have been lit flat and against a white background as that's what many photographers think their clients want. Every now and again why not shoot something a little different and show your client more creative and thought out images?

These images were shot for a client who has yet to publish, but has agreed to my sharing a few with you.

I wanted to move away from the aforementioned white background pack shot and create something with a brighter summery feel.

The background is an old Welsh slate roof tile recovered from a rubbish/garbage skip, with permission of the owner.

My key light an Elinchrom Maxi Spot 40cm bright polished deep reflector with a BRX500 head. Without modification this gives a hard directional or collimated beam of light, around 29º. Light at 11 o'clock feather a couple of degrees camera right, 7' distant, 4' above set. Exposure +/-0 as I tend not to worry about aperture stops when working like this. If it looks right, it is right. Shutter would have been 1/160th second so no ambient crept in.

I wanted to add a touch of warmth so a 20"x24" sheet of Rosco #3443 ½ CTS (Colour Temperature Straw) was clipped in front of the light together with a sheet of Rosco #3007 Light Tough Spun which softens the shadow edges giving the authentic sunlit look, without turning the shadows milky like solid diffusion sheets. CTS is less red that the more popular CTO (Colour Temperature Orange), though the subtlety doesn't always show when reproduced via the Internet and/or on uncalibrated displays!

Both Rosco & Lee Filters offer a wide range of sheet correction filters from 10"x12" to 20"x24" and wider rolls for more ambitious projects.

The fill light was a Elinchrom Portalite 56cm Octa, Ranger Quadra head etc with the white front diffuser in place, to camera left around 7 o'clock, 2' distant and 2'6" above the set, metered at -1 stop under key light just to fill the shadows. Both lights were metered individually with the white disk pointing to the light from the main point of the set. No overall meter reading was used.

CLS of the set-up
Members of The LIGHT Side 
will understand the acronym

Key to diagram:
  1. Elinchrom Maxi Spot 40cm bright polished deep reflector with a BRX500 head.
  2. Rosco #3443 ½ CTS (Colour Temperature Straw).
  3. Rosco #3007 Light Tough Spun.
  4. Reclaimed Welsh Slate roof tile.
  5. Beads and voil bag.
  6. Elinchrom Portalite 56cm Octa, Ranger Quadra head etc.
  7. Canon 100mm ƒ/2.8 EF macro on 5DII.
Elinchrom flash are available from The Flash Centre. Contact Simon Burfoot and don't forget to mention this blog and The LIGHT Side Facebook group.


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