On Assignment: Creating a Rippling Water Light Effect

Lindsay Adler hits the pool to capture a shimmering portrait
Photo of ripple effect image
Editor’s Note: Have you ever wondered how your favorite photographers capture the images they take? Digital Photo Pro’s monthly column “On Assignment” is where Canon Explorers of Light, past and present, share a backstage look at one of their favorite assignments and how they delivered the goods. This month we go On Assignment with portrait... Read more

5 Mistakes that Make Pro Photographers Look Like Amateurs

Why are you making these same old errors in your work?
Photo for pro portrait mistakes
You’ve spent a lot of time, energy and hard work building a pro photography career so why are you making the same old mistakes that undermine your success? That’s the gist of pro portrait photographer Manny Ortiz‘s opinionated video below where he outlines “five mistakes that make you look like an amateur photographer.” As... Read more

How I Made It: The Story Behind Jason Vinson’s Fiery Fall Photo

An autumnal tree, a kissing couple and exquisite lighting combine to make a great image
Photo of kissing couple under tree by Jason Vinson
Summer has just begun but Jason Vinson’s photo at the top of this story really puts us in an autumn mood. Shot as part of an engagement session, the kissing couple in the photo appear to form the trunk of the tree that explodes in auburn flames above them. We wanted to learn more about this fiery photo, particularly how it was lit – the lighting... Read more
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How to Use an Inflatable Pool as a Dramatic Backdrop for Portraits

This DIY backyard set-up will help catch the eye of clients
Photo of kiddie pool backdrop
Here’s a clever do-it-yourself photography project to try out this summer. In the below video, photographer Irene Rudnyk shows you how she set up an inflatable kiddie pool in her backyard and used it as a dramatic backdrop for a portrait/fashion session. “I actually tried doing this concept in my living room this winter, which was honestly... Read more

Fast 4-Light Setup Produces Stunning Studio Portraits

Turn to this classic lighting arrangement when you're in a hurry
Photo of studio lighting portrait tips
If you’ve booked some studio time for your next portrait session but don’t have a ton of time to actually shoot it, here’s a fast and easy 4-light set-up from Eli Infante that will come in handy. In the below video tutorial, Infante shows you his four-light studio process using the Westcott FJ400 strobe set-up. Similar lighting from... Read more

How to Create a Professional-Level YouTube Studio in a Small Space

6 tips to get you looking good on YouTube even if you live in a tiny apartment
Screenshot of YouTube studio tips video
More and more pro photographers are starting YouTube channels to promote themselves and their work. But if you’re a photographer who hasn’t yet joined the YouTube craze, you’re probably wondering how to get started. And perhaps one of the most intimidating things about YouTube is figuring out how to create an attractive studio to shoot... Read more

5 Classic Techniques for Using a Beauty Dish in Portrait Photography

These tried-and-true lighting setups never go out of style
Screenshot of beauty dish tips
We recently published our guide to the five best beauty dishes you can buy, so we thought it was a good time for a quick refresher course on some classic techniques for using this type of light modifier in portrait photography. In the below video, portrait pro Miguel Quiles shares five ways he uses a beauty dish to take studio-style portraits. While... Read more

Try These 5 Quick Lighting Techniques to Give Your Photos Some Spark

Project light through gobos to create head-turning looks for portraits
Screenshot for lighting tips
Lighting tips and techniques come in many forms. Some are elaborate lighting set-ups that require hours of preparation to produce a single look. Other lighting tips are fast, simple to produce, and can help you create several different styles in minutes. Manny Ortiz‘ new lighting tutorial below is of the quick and easy variety. In the video below,... Read more

LED Continuous Lights vs Strobe Flashes: Which Is Better for Studio Photography?

LED and strobes have their pro and cons but there's one clear winner when it comes to serious studio shoots
Screen shot of lighting video
Strobes have long been the primary lighting choice for studio photographers but that’s changing with the advent of better and more powerful LED continuous lighting systems. Thanks to their improved color accuracy, the ability to easily adjust color temperature and brightness on the fly, and their overall ease of use, LED lighting has gotten more... Read more

Modern Lighting Solutions

New technology has opened up portrait lighting possibilities
Modern Lighting Solutions
For this portrait, I used an ELB 500 in TTL mode with a 53-inch Rotalux Octabox. The flash was set for high-speed sync for 1/800 shutter speed. Nikon Z 7, 35mm F1.8 lens. Exposure 1/800 sec., ƒ/1.8, ISO 100. The photography industry has been rapidly transforming in recent years, and the major focus has been on camera systems. Every year, there are... Read more