1. White Light, White Wall

Brian has a big beard. But Brian has a small apartment—300 square feet small, and that’s empty. I conducted the shoot in his bedroom/living room accompanied by his bicycle, a gigantic console stereo, a twin bed, stacks of records, and mounds of clothing. I had about 20 square feet left to work with, so I needed to be extra creative.

I had brought along four 40x60-inch sheets of 1/2-inch-thick white foam core, which I bring to most of my home shoots, because I don’t know what I am walking into. If Brian turned out to be the founder of the Team Edward Fan Club, with every inch of wall space covered in Twilight movie posters, I’d need to use those panels as my blank backdrop.

As can see from the setup in Figure 1.1, Brian’s ...

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