Keep scrolling to see the gear and settings used for this shot.

Get rim lighting using one light and one modifier

If you are a fan of dramatic black and whites like I am, then rim lighting might be something that you are after. In my early days of learning lighting I would tell you that you would need at least 3 lights in order to pull off rim lighting. However, thanks to a video by Jiggie Alejandrino I found out that you can achieve it with only one light and a rather large modifier. I absolutely recommend trying this out. It is so easy to get a beautiful dramatic look and shooting these in black and white just adds to the drama. On top of this cool look, a large octobox will always come in handy for soft lighting. You can achieve close to natural lighting with one so I always suggest to pick one up. So the trick is rather easy, all you do is poke a whole near the middle top of a 2'x3' black foam board and then stick that onto the softbox so it sits in the middle. The black foam board acts as a back drop and a gobo. Since the foam board is smaller than the softbox, light still escapes around it and this lights our subject. It is important to note that I didn't use any of the diffusion panels that came with the octobox. Jiggie does have diffusion in his set up but I opted it out to achieve more contrast. The end result are beautiful, dramatic portraits with rim lighting surrounding your subject completely. You can also add a foam board next to your subject and facing in so that it can better illuminate your subject's face. Obviously this style isn't for everybody but I happen to love the look and I think its a great way to get creative. I decided to add some constant lighting in the mix as well and got some pretty awesome results. I'll be posting that up later. As I mentioned above, a large octobox is paramount for a soft natural look so I highly suggest getting yourself one. Links are provided below. I also picked up black and white foam boards are the dollar store. I could have provided links to some on amazon but it is much cheaper to get them at the dollar store. They come in the perfect size and they are invaluable tools for studio work.

What you'll need:

How to use it:

Once you have your lights set up the way I explain in the diagram above, your first step is to pose your model. You are limited with tight shots using this set up, but the results are beautiful none-the-less.

After you're satisfied with the pose, your second step is to set your exposure so that your sensor doesn't pick up ANY ambient light. I typically achieve this with an aperture at around f/8-11 and a SS of 1/200-1/300. Of course, that isn't always true, though.

Your third step is to set the power of your strobe or speedlight to achieve the exposure that you want. This may take a couple of test fires to figure out, but worth your time.

Camera Settings:

Camera: Canon EOS R

SS: 1/250

Aperture: f/8

ISO: 100

Strobe: Godox AD200

@ 1/4 + .7 power

More Examples

Similar Posts

Light Painting II

One Light Studio

Light Painting I