Photography Studio and Lighting Forum

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  1. #1
    Godot Enthusiast. dinosaur_hotel's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Monterey, California, U.S.

    Simple Lighting Setup.

    Hi all,

    I'm currently photographing a classic/vintage guitar collection for a client of mine and I need some advice on a simple, but effective lighting set up. They're photos for his website, basic studio shots.

    I shoot Nikon and have an SB-800 and SB-600. I'm considering getting 2 external lights and shades.Thing is my background is in photojournalism and I know virtually nothing about studio lighting.

    Recommended products for this sort of work?


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  2. #2
    Senior Member cyberlord's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    FWB, FL, USA

    Re: Simple Lighting Setup.


    You already have 2 strobes and unless you are shooting a large group of instruments from any distance they should work out fine.

    You'll need some way to mount the flashes (tripods or light stands) and some diffusers (umbrellas or ripstop nylon stretched over PVC pipe).

    Can't get any simpler than that. Even lighting at 45 degrees or so on each side should produce exceptable results with minimal shadows.

    You could try one light straight on front and back light with the other and gel (color) is for effect. You could also use halogen worklights as accent lights. They produce a nice warm glow that mixes well with strobes (IMHO).

    Take a look at and the flickr group for some ideas. Most of the stuff there is shot with hot shoe flash mounted off camera.

    Good luck,

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  3. #3
    MJS is offline
    Digital Video Moderator
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Miami, FL

    Re: Simple Lighting Setup.

    You've got the toys, look at something similar to the following link, it will be just what you need to get started playing around with your current strobes.
    Nikon Samurai #8
    Avid Editor
    Sony Shogun

  4. #4
    Sleep is optional Sebastian's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Chicago Suburbs

    Re: Simple Lighting Setup.

    Foam core or shoot-through panels. Guitars tend to be reflective, you'll want nice white highlights to define the form. Illuminated panels, whether foam core with the flash pointed at it or translucent material with the flash shooting through it, will get the job done.

    I would try one flash used for the main light and shoot the second flash at the background, creating a sort of silhouette to separate the items from the BG and define the form that might be hidden in shadow.

    Quick illustration of what I'm (poorly) trying to say:

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    (Please don't edit and repost my images without my permission. Thank you)

    How to tell the most experienced shooter in a group? They have the least amount of toys on them.

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