Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Technique Tuesday: Dancing With The Light Fantastic - Getting The Best Light At Wedding Receptions With Multiple Strobes

Good Morning Everybody,
OK, this is the day - yep, the day where I answer the most requested question I've received to date - How do I light the impromptu candids at wedding receptions? Hey remember, if I'm doing it, it first of all has to be easy.

In this video tutorial, I'll walk you through my tried and true techniques for getting the best light on the wedding candids. For candids to look better than good, you need to light your subject with a highlight next to a shadow. It is only then do we get the detail, depth, dimension, and color saturation in our images that separates the men and women from the boys and girls.

It's light that makes them pop out of the background finally giving your images that 3-dimensional polish they deserve. Hit PLAY below to learn more. Enjoy the show! -David


  1. David,
    Just wonderful - thanks.

    What light are you using for the 'main light' at 10 o clock? Is it also a Quantum 5?


  2. Very nice work. It is always a pleasure to see your images and it is of great help to hear you explain how you get them.

    You've done a good job explaining the 10,2 and 6 placement of you lighting, but can you elaborate on the distance of those lights. Obviously the light at the 6 position is on camera, but within the limitations of your setting, what is your goal for placement of the stationary light at 10? Does your assistant always remain at the perimeter of the room, or does he/she move in and out relative to your subject while remaining at the 2 position? Is the power output adjusted relative to the distance to your subject, or do they typically remain at a constant power?

    Again, many thanks for your inspiring work and your helpful commentary.

  3. David, thanks for the great tutorial. I posted that question to Skribit when you first opened it up.

    To the first question, David says the room light is a White Lightning 1600, which is a 660 watt-second studio strobe, also fired by the FreeWire system. That room light was the missing piece of the puzzle for me.

  4. Hi David,

    Great tutorial! How are you managing exposure? I would imagine that trying to expose all those whites properly would be difficult with zooming in and out and constantly moving.


  5. nice...I must say that you always offer good insights ...may I inquire ...how are you setting the lights ...flash meter?..I thought that meters were a thing of the past because of the blinkies and histo ... I would really like to knoe your secret ...
    on another note ..I as well as (hopefully) others strugle with the procession images ... seems as though I resort to TTL way to much ...
    hey ...Perhaps...yes indeed ...that would make a great video tutorial ...how to achieve that great 3d look in the isle ...
    hmmm..let me guess ...

    Thanx again David Z

  6. yeah one more question??? what power do you set that room light... I have a studio strobe just like that and was wondering... is it at full power??? or do you test shot it and adjust to flavor??

  7. David great stuff, learned a lot. Have a question do you gell the stobes and what do you use.


  8. Still need to watch the video, but I had a quick question/suggestion: What do you think about turning your tutorials into a video podcast on iTunes?

  9. Are you saying you don't move around the scene?

  10. First, thank you for this and all your off-camera lighting tutorials. I'm strictly an armature trying to learn more. In you portrait mode pictures, are you using a bracket on the camera to position the on-camera flash so not to be on the side of the camera? Can you recommend one ?

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