Tag Archives: Studio Lighting

Profoto B1 500 Air TTL Experience

A photographer’s journey is full of learning, playing and enjoying the art and beauty of photography. As the photographer goes on in their photography exploration and experimentation, they will enter into the world of flash photography. When I started learning flash photography a few years ago, it was quite a challenge and a bit of a steep learning experience. One of my mentors, Daniel from The Camera Workshop taught me very basics of flash photography, it had been a fun learning hands on journey with speedlight photography.

DSC01295

 As I take the next step into advanced flash photography, it started with using 3 Canon Speedlite 580ex2 to light up my alumni mater Gan Eng Seng Dragon Scout Group Anniversary Dinner Group Photograph in the school hall. It got me started to learn more about using off camera flash and multiple flashes. I slowly read up and researched by reading photography sites, youtube videos and e-guides. One of the key sites was strobist where I started learning basics and built up my basic lighting photography setup kit. During that time, I chanced upon 2 e-guides by Profoto, titled “The Profoto Advantage: For Wedding and Portrait Photographers”. The 2 e-guides introduced Profoto products such as the Profoto D1, modifiers and accessories. There is an article inside titled “Profoto D1 vs Speedlights” and it gets me thinking ahead.

DSC01339

My strobist flash photography journey gets more interesting and exciting after working with Weili, photographer and owner of Poisonous Online Boutique Store. Weili is very knowledgeable and experienced with strobist/studio lighting photography using Profoto lights. I learned a lot from him by asking him questions and learning from him over coffee sessions. Recently, I was given the opportunity to be his photographer assistant for his Dance Photography Shoot and this was my miaden entry into strobist lighting photography. The experience was great, nothing beats being hands on learning from the expert!

The highlight and euphoria for me came when I was invited by Weili, the golden opportunity to loan and review Profoto latest technology, the Profoto B1 Off-Camera Flash for 2 days over the weekend. This was an excellent and golden opportunity that I grabbed with both hands eagerly! I brought the Profoto B1 out for 2 days and I had a very fun self learning, testing and sharing with fellow social media friends and photographers on the Profoto B1.

What are my thoughts and views of the Profoto B1 during the 2 days review period? Here they are below –

 Pros

–       Not too heavy and easily portable

–       Versatile for different photography needs, indoors and outdoors, portraits, products, pets, fast action photography

–       Powerful ~ 500Ws

–       Energy Range ~ 9 f-stops

–       Compact and cordless

–       Good battery life

–       Consistent lighting output

–       Good recycling time for quick burst shoot

–       High speed sync

–       Profoto Air Remote is versatile and can be used on different cameras

–       If equipped with the Air Remote TTL-C for Canon, makes it easier for photographers to carry out their assignment faster.

–       No electrical cords

Cons

–       Price is on the high side for the Profoto B1 light (standalone)

–       Addition of accessories will add up the cost further e.g. remote, modifiers, accessories

–       Too good and smart with the Air-Remote TTL-C feature, that might make photographers lazy

2T2J7925

During the 2 days with the Profoto B1, I went to test and get hands on feel of the Profoto B1 personally, starting with my family dog at home and at the office furniture showroom before meeting my friends later. I had a fun photography testing and sharing session with fellow social media friends/photographers DK and Ridz on a Saturday night at the Esplanade area. The Saturday night shoot and sharing with DK and Ridz was fun and we were able to see for ourselves how 1 off camera flash such as the Profoto B1 can have the impacts to portrait photography!

IMG_6330

Model: Ridz

Photographer: DK

Photographer Assistant: Myself (holding the Profoto B1)

On the Sunday afternoon, I met fellow photographer friend David Tay from David Tay Photography for outdoor portrait photography. We took turns being the photographer and model, exchanging tips, posing, camera settings adjustments while experimenting with the Profoto B1. During this shoot, I had a better understanding and control of the Profoto B1 that gave me two nice portraits that I really like, check them out here on 500px!

DSC02143

Photographer: David Tay

Model: Myself

If you are looking to buy a studio light or planning to upgrade your studio light, the Profoto B1 Off-Camera flash definitely should be part of your choices for selection. The Profoto B1 can be purchased via Poisonous Online Boutique Store; check out the single unit Profoto B1 or the dual travel kit Profoto B1 package! 

You get what you pay for and for the amount of money invested in the Profoto B1, it’s definitely worth it. Their marketing slogan from Profoto website “Once You Try It, It Changes Everything”, definitely lives up to their branding, marketing and publicity. From a photographer who just entered into advanced strobist lighting and having the Profoto B1 for 2 days, the Profoto B1 lives up to its reputation and quality. I am pretty confident that I am able to tap on the full maximum potential of the Profoto B1, shooting with multiple B1 lights in the future with the TTL capability. The Profoto B1 sounds like an excellent investment for me in the future when I do sports photography shoot/portraits!

I would like to thank Weili from Poisonous Online Boutique Store for the Profoto B1 loan review opportunity.


Created with Admarket’s flickrSLiDR.

Learning Studio Lighting Photography Part One

The fastest and ideal method of learning photography is to go hands on and go out shooting, whether it is a leisure photography or paid photography assignment, on-the-job training and learning allows photographers to learn as much within a short time frame. The art and field of photography is diverse and exciting when we keep on learning a new field of photography or improving on a specialised field of photography. I started reading, researching, learning and planning my lighting photography setup in the past few months, I finally got my basic lighting photography setup up and running!

2T2J5873

Recently, there was an opportunity to learn more advanced lighting photography, an area that I totally don’t have any experience in! The studio photography session was Weili’s Dance Photography Shoot and I was given the opportunity by the master photographer himself (who also owns this Poisonous online photography boutique store) to help out in his Dance  Photography Shoot. It was a golden opportunity to go hands on and learn studio lighting photography setup from an experienced photographer! I am looking forward to more of Weili’s studio lighting photography workshops in the future!

2T2J5855

2T2J5860

The studio location was at The Studio Outfitters and we went there early to prepare and setup the lightings. Personally, this was a very good learning experience, to be a photography assistant to the photographer, although it’s not my first time being an assistant to a photographer, it was definitely my first photography assistant role in a studio photography shoot. During the first hour of setup, I listened to instructions from Weili on where and how he wanted to setup his lightings. He took the time to explain how his studio lighting setup would work, where the lights will hit/shine and affect the Dance Shoot. This was also the first time I had a hands on experience with the giant parabolic umbrella and the lighting device known as the beauty dish and why photographers swear by it. Along with 6 other strobe lights along the side to the end of the studio, this was a pretty ideal setup to get the studio lighted up evenly. To capture the desired lighting effect, all the lights might be used or a few of the lights will not be used/switched on, therefore, I was moving around during certain times of the shoot to switch on/off the strobe lights placed at the side/end of the studio, with instructions from photographer Weili directing the shoot. That is something that I will need to go hands on by being the photographer and directing my own studio shoot and I can learn it more from my own photography shoots in the future!

2T2J5858

Since my role was a photography assistant, I only took photographs of the studio lighting for my own learning and notes taking and some snap shots of the photographer in action. This Dance Photography Shoot was an invaluable learning experience for me and I am grateful to Weili for giving me the chance to assist in his Dance Photography Shoot! Moving ahead in the future, I am planning and making arrangements for indoor studio shoots and outdoor shoots as well! There is still a lot more to learn on different lighting setups to capture certain desired effects and outcomes, this indoor and outdoor lighting photography journey ahead for me is going to be a fun and interesting adventure!

2T2J5867

This is just Part One of my Learning Studio Lighting Photography journey, hopefully in Part Two, I will be able to learn from being in the role of the photographer calling/directing the shoot. Now is the time to start planning and making my arrangements with friends whom I asked and  are willing to be my volunteer models!