Portrait of Swedish hockey legend Börje Salming, shot in natural light using only one window

This is a portrait lighting setup by Swedish photographer Frida Lenholm using only a window as a single light source. Since there is no expensive equipment needed, this is a lighting setup that anyone can test.

Frida: – I am very weak for portraits that are illuminated with window lights. For this portrait lighting with Börje Salming there was only one window in a dark room which created a nice contrast between light and dark.

The closer to the window you put the model, the faster the light will fall off, and give a stronger contrast. For more details regarding this, you can study the inverse-square law.

By placing Börje at an optimal distance from the window, I found a balance of contrast and even exposure that captures Börjes personality.

Portrait lighting setup using a window as a single light source.

Portrait of Alice Bah Kunkhe with a lighting setup using natural light from two windows

This is a portrait photography lighting setup from the Swedish photographer Frida Lenholm.

The photo of Alice Bah Kuhnke was for the cover of a local magazine in Sweden.

Frida: – Since I love backlight very much and had a short time, it was a good solution to us natural light and take the picture of Alice in the window.

The window in the back had the strongest light and was facing the sun. The transparent curtains reduced and softened the spill light around Alice. The window and the curtains also created a frame around Alice that accentuated the composition.

There was also a window from the side with less intense light, that worked as a kicker light that and lit up Alice from the side/front and made the exposure more even.

The photo is slightly overexposed and shot with a Canon 24-70mm /F2.8 lens.

Lighting diagram for the portrait in natural light

Butterfly lighting setup with Denice Andrée

Butterfly lighting setup with Swedish model Denice Andrée

This is a lighting setup by swedish photographer Carl Magnus Swahn with swedish model Denice Andrée. It is actually a classic butterfly lighting setup. I think it gives a very feminin character and I find suitable for classic beauty photos. This specific setup has the soft box with angle closer to the camera lens and less from above, so the characteristic butterfly shadow under the nose is not so prominent.

The equipment for this lighting setup

The photo was shot with a Lastolite Hilite 2,5 x 2,15 m giant soft box as a background. It was lit up by two Elinchrom strobes with a red/pink-ish gel filter to get that pink background. The gradient in the background was later enhanced in Photoshop. It’s difficult to see in the lighting diagram, but the Lastolite Hilite soft box is really huge. It’s like a huge lit up backdrop that easily can cover a full figure modell.

An Elinchrome Ranger (even though it was indoors) with a large soft box above the camera pointing at Denice. There was also a table with a silver metallic rescue blanket on it, used as a giant reflector. That gives a rectangular shape of the reflector and a much nicer catch light in the eyes.

If you zoom in on the photos and take a close look at the catch light in the eyes, you can clearly see the large soft box from above as well as the reflector from underneath.

The bokeh blur was added in photoshop.

Check out Denices Youtube channel here!

The Lastolite Hilite Soft box is much larger than shown in the lighting diagram.
More photos with butterfly lighting setup with the Swedish model Denice Andrée

Portrait lighting setup with a reflector and a strobe

The reflector gives a soft light and the strobe from the back adds som details.

Here's the lighting diagram for the photo above.

This is a perfect lighting setup for all you that don’t have so much equipment but still want to take professional photos. All you need is one strobe that you can fire remotely and a reflector. Indonesian photographer Meggy Irawan shows us how the it’s done.

Natural light photography using a window and a reflector

Natural light FTW!

Lighting diagram of the window and the reflector

Cecilie Harris gives us the details for this lighting setup:

– Shot indoor at the Ragged School Museum that provides a lot of natural light coming in through windows and even holes in the ceiling. This image was shot for my “Boys by Girls” project (www.boysbygirls.co.uk) for the first coffee table book for this project.

Backlight portrait lighting setup

Great make up and great lighting.

A octabox source from behind and a reflector from the side.

Here’s a simple but useful lighting setup from photographer Jessica Wikström.

Jessica: – The plan for this picture was to create a soft backlight but I changed my mind and got the reflector to lighten up the models face and get some more contrast into the picture.

Retro style portrait lighting setup

Classic retro style portrait

Lighting diagram for retro style portrait.

Hipolit Terpinsky gives this nifty little lighting setup to all you retro lovers out there. To add that extra classic movie star touch, put a cigarette in the models mouth, and load your camera with old school grainy black and white film (Ilford FP4).

But leave your flux capacitor at home.