The Basics of a One Light Setup: A Lighting Tutorial - Digital Photography School
Close
Close

The Basics of a One Light Setup: A Lighting Tutorial

Lately we’ve had a lot of readers asking for advice about simple lighting techniques for shooting portraits. Here’s a good video from TheSlantedLens that gives some good basic information on how to set up a one light setup.

Further Reading

Read more from our Tips & Tutorials category.

Darren Rowse is the editor and founder of Digital Photography School and SnapnDeals. He lives in Melbourne Australia and is also the editor of the ProBlogger Blog Tips. Follow him on Instagram, on Twitter at @digitalPS or on Google+.

  • Swampgeek

    Nice video and some interesting ideas. I have just recently gotten into the flash side of photography and got my speedlight, lighting stand, shoot through umbrella, and adapter. It really makes a difference in the end result. I also really like the stuff over at strobist.com as well. Great for the beginners to experts… Great video thanks for the extra info…

  • http://Judy-Deist.ArtistWebsites.com PhotosJHS

    A very simple and quick explanation of a complex subject made this presentation an enjoyable and a understandable lesson. A lot in a little time.

  • Wiltshire Paul

    I really appreciated the techniques discussed about the lighting arrangement – a simple set of rules that produces great results (the older I get the more I realise that the simple solutions to problems seem to produce the best results!)

    However …… what was the point of pulling frames from a video recording! even at full HD (1080p) the image resolution is, quite frankly, terrible. Never mind the problems associated with shutter speed/motion blur. Shooting with a camera and lens of this quality and then not taking advantage of the potential high quality results seems pointless to me.

  • http://bit.ly/oufr4c gnslngr45

    Being able to only afford one light, this is helpful.
    Most of my photos are outdoors. Still learning the indoor portrait shot – but it doesn’t help that my subjects are age 5 & under. Not easy to practice studio shots with energetic/restless kids.

    Flickr:
    http://bit.ly/oufr4c

  • http://Google.com Bobgood1

    Thanks for the Video on lighting. It was very informative. It gave me something to think about when taking portraits.

  • Don Simpson

    Not my idea of a basic tutorial. What amateur has that kind of a studio, crew, or equipment? How about changing the equipment to a single speedlight and handheld reflector. Change the crew to a single friend, forget the fancy makeup artistry and then it would be basic.

  • http://www.boobux.com Daniel

    You can also try http://www.BooBux.com to make money online. You never need to invest to earn or cashout and the service is entirely free.

  • HES

    Not really a true one-light tutorial. It included reflectors, extra stands, and other equipment that many people don’t have. How about a true one-light tutorial: And let’s make it really simplified–speedlite flash on a stand, shoot-thru or bounced unbrella, and a single shooter (no assistants or other modifiers) actually holding the camera? Ideas covered are good, but not feasible from my perspective.

  • hemanth

    if it work in nicon d90 or 300s camaras .. ..

  • alvin

    more of a buy more gear ad
    single light -and a whole lot of uuber expensive gear

Some older comments

  • HES

    September 21, 2013 05:03 am

    Not really a true one-light tutorial. It included reflectors, extra stands, and other equipment that many people don't have. How about a true one-light tutorial: And let's make it really simplified--speedlite flash on a stand, shoot-thru or bounced unbrella, and a single shooter (no assistants or other modifiers) actually holding the camera? Ideas covered are good, but not feasible from my perspective.

  • Daniel

    June 26, 2013 07:19 am

    You can also try http://www.BooBux.com to make money online. You never need to invest to earn or cashout and the service is entirely free.

  • Don Simpson

    March 23, 2013 10:26 am

    Not my idea of a basic tutorial. What amateur has that kind of a studio, crew, or equipment? How about changing the equipment to a single speedlight and handheld reflector. Change the crew to a single friend, forget the fancy makeup artistry and then it would be basic.

  • Bobgood1

    March 23, 2013 02:20 am

    Thanks for the Video on lighting. It was very informative. It gave me something to think about when taking portraits.

  • gnslngr45

    March 22, 2013 11:50 pm

    Being able to only afford one light, this is helpful.
    Most of my photos are outdoors. Still learning the indoor portrait shot - but it doesn't help that my subjects are age 5 & under. Not easy to practice studio shots with energetic/restless kids.

    Flickr:
    http://bit.ly/oufr4c

  • Wiltshire Paul

    March 22, 2013 08:26 am

    I really appreciated the techniques discussed about the lighting arrangement - a simple set of rules that produces great results (the older I get the more I realise that the simple solutions to problems seem to produce the best results!)

    However ...... what was the point of pulling frames from a video recording! even at full HD (1080p) the image resolution is, quite frankly, terrible. Never mind the problems associated with shutter speed/motion blur. Shooting with a camera and lens of this quality and then not taking advantage of the potential high quality results seems pointless to me.

  • PhotosJHS

    March 22, 2013 03:00 am

    A very simple and quick explanation of a complex subject made this presentation an enjoyable and a understandable lesson. A lot in a little time.

  • Swampgeek

    March 16, 2013 12:48 am

    Nice video and some interesting ideas. I have just recently gotten into the flash side of photography and got my speedlight, lighting stand, shoot through umbrella, and adapter. It really makes a difference in the end result. I also really like the stuff over at strobist.com as well. Great for the beginners to experts... Great video thanks for the extra info...

Receive a FREE SAMPLE of our Portrait Photography Ebook

  • Guaranteed for 2 full months
  • Pay by PayPal or CreditCard
  • Instant Digital Download

Receive a FREE SAMPLE of our Portrait Photography Ebook

  • Guaranteed for 2 full months
  • Pay by PayPal or CreditCard
  • Instant Digital Download

Receive a FREE SAMPLE of our Portrait Photography Ebook

  • Guaranteed for 2 full months
  • Pay by PayPal or CreditCard
  • Instant Digital Download

Sign up to the free DPS PHOTOGRAPHY COURSE

  • Guaranteed for 2 full months
  • Pay by PayPal or CreditCard
  • Instant Digital Download

GET DAILY free tips, news and reviews via our RSS Feed

Sign up to the free

DPS PHOTOGRAPHY COURSE

  • Guaranteed for 2 full months
  • Pay by PayPal or CreditCard
  • Instant Digital Download

GET DAILY free tips, news and reviews via our RSS Feed

Sign up to the free

DPS PHOTOGRAPHY COURSE

  • Guaranteed for 2 full months
  • Pay by PayPal or CreditCard
  • Instant Digital Download
DPS NEWSLETTER
DPS NEWSLETTER
DPS NEWSLETTER

DPS offers a free weekly newsletter with: 
1. new photography tutorials and tips
2. latest photography assignments
3. photo competitions and prizes

Enter your email below to subscribe.
Email:
 
 
Get DAILY free tips, news and reviews via our RSS feed