December 2020 // The How-to Edition

For location work I almost never use a large modifier. Only if the location is indoor and even then it is rare. The two key choices here are Magnetmod MagBox or an OFC Magnum reflector from Profoto. In my outdoor location shoots there are two factors that dictate what I am using: time of day and logistics. I tend to mostly shoot in the middle of the day, with hard light, in which case I will use the Magnum reflector for light power giving me that punch I need. When shooting on location, I am mainly using one light as in the image with Faren and her yellow dress. I have a B1 in a reflector being held by my assistant, fellow ShutterFester and friend, Dez Merrow. I have Dez stand 90 degrees from me with the subject as the anchor point. I will still ask to feather the light to limit shadows and spill if necessary. If I’m in full sun it’s rarely an issue. Simple setup: I direct the subject’s chin from the light to the camera until I see the light carve out the face to give drama to the image. Using the Magnum reflector with the silver gives me that extra light power but it is also specular in nature, highlighting the dress in a fantastic manner. It makes the image so much more dynamic, as seen in the image in the cornfield. When the sun is not so high in the sky or it is more cloudy, the MagBox comes in handy with its two different diffusers. It gives me a nice spread when I do not need the punch of the Magnum reflector and want to balance more with the ambient light, as seen in the maternity image with the red dress. In that image the MagBox is blocked out of view by the pillars and gives me enough fill to mainly shoot using the natural light as my base. When lighting in open shade or guerilla shooting and avoiding attention I bring out the A1 with a MagMod sphere, only looking for fill or in some cases a little punch for drama. In both instances, I have the light placed 90 degrees from the subject. In the maternity couple’s image I was placed in open shade using this setup and position. In the image with the pink dress I added the light to give me a little more punch, understanding I will edit it a specific way.

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