High Key fashion lighting

A popular style of lighting in fashion magazines the last few years has been to use a very bright, harsh light, for a dramatic effect.  I’ve been experimenting with this style.  Amanda is the model for these images. There are headshots of her, with more traditional lighting styles, here.

In these images I used just one light, in a small reflector, with a silk cover to diffuse the light slightly.  The light had to be carefully aimed in each shot, and it was important for Amanda to keep her face turned slightly towards the light, so as not to have her face in a dark shadow. Overall, there’s not much room for error when shooting with this setup. And shooting a white dress on a white background presented its own challenges.

Many of the images converted nicely to black and white. In a black and white image, you usually want to punch up the contrast when converting from a color picture, but we had plenty of contrast in these to begin with.  The shadows add interest and echo to some degree the film noir style of the 1940’s and 1950’s.

Do these images appeal to you? I’d love to hear what you think!


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