[ all images: Nikon D3; Nikon 70-200mm f2.8 AF-S VR; Profoto beauty dish ]
During these icy winter months it’s just too much to go outside for portrait photography, so it’s a good time to play around indoors with some lighting gear – in this case, a recently acquired Profoto AcuteB 600R lighting kit (B&H) and the Profoto beauty dish (B&H).
I wanted a lighting setup that could deliver more power than the Q-flashes that I mainly use, and the Profoto AcuteB 600R setup appears to be a great choice – reliable high-quality equipment. This specific battery-powered flash pack delivers a very respectable 600 W/s which would be enough juice to overpower sunlight, even when using a large softbox. And that’s the reason I bought this – to use for on-location photography where I need a good amount of flash power in a very portable setup.
I was also curious about using a beauty dish- a much praised piece of lighting gear, which provides a distinctive light. So here is a first foray into using the beauty dish for some simple headshots of my model, Kathy. (The third image here had a 25′ honeycomb grid in front of the beauty dish for more directional light.)
My initial impression is that the beauty dish is less flexible than say a softbox, requiring fairly specific positioning of the light in relation to the model. Or conversely, specific positioning of the model in relation to the light. The light from the beauty dish has a certain quality – fairly soft but with a dramatic drop-off to the shadow side. This, for my first attempt felt like I had less ‘play’ in positioning the light than if I had used a larger softbox. But these are early days still, and there’s much more to learn with these new toys.
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