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Nikon® Creative Lighting System: Digital Field Guide, Second Edition by J. Dennis Thomas

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Chapter 5. Setting up a Portable Studio

One of the great things about Nikon Speedlights is that they are small and portable. This allows you to easily transport your lighting equipment to any location and photograph your subjects in their environment without having to worry about the quality of the available light. With some careful planning you should be able put together what I like to call a portable studio. A portable studio should be just that — portable. You should be able to fit everything you need into a minimum amount of space and be able to transport it quickly with minimal effort.

Setting up a Portable Studio

Having a portable studio allows you to get professional looking images anywhere.

Introduction to the Portable Studio

A portable studio should include at a minimum, but should not be limited to, at least one Speedlight, a reflector of some sort to fill in the harsh shadows created by strobes, an umbrella or softbox to soften the light for a more pleasing effect, and one or more light stands.

One of the hardest things to do when putting together a portable studio is knowing when to say when. Sometimes the tendency is to push the envelope. You end up acquiring a lot of gear and it can be too much to lug around all at once.

Ideally, your portable studio should have three Speedlights (key, fill, and background), three light stands, and at least two light modifiers (umbrellas or softboxes). A reflector is ...

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