Without good lighting, you get lousy portraits. It's just that simple!! It's always about that direction of light. Hey, I've been talking about it most of the week for the Kelby Training videos we were working on, so when I found this link over at Tammy Cravit's NicePicsLady blog, I thought I'd point you to it. Tammy has a "ton" of good lighting links in her post. Some really good information here - way to go Tammy.
My favorite is the link to Maurice Mc Duff great article right here with 16 great illustrations and lots of images showing lighting results - two really good finds.