Want to set up a studio a studio or you want to improve your lighting setup, well you are in th right place, this post is for you, it is meant to give you an introduction to basic lighting equipment for a studio.
Also, to make your search for these lighting gears easy, i will attach links where you can easily shop for this items at the comfort of your homes.
Ok, here we go!!!
Lighting equipment basically falls into one of these three major categories: the light sources themselves, modifiers, and grips or stands .
Professional studio light generally fall into one of two categories: a kit with a flash head and a power pack, or a monolight kit.
A head and power pack kit made up of the flash head and a power pack that acts as the generator that supplies power to the flash head. The flash head contains flash tubes that emit light.
Two types of power pack exist: symmetric power packs and assymetric power packs.
Symmetric power packs split power equally between multiple flash heads. Assymetric power packs allow the user to decide and adjust the power supply to different flash heads.
Monolights, on the other hand, is a self-contained photographic flash lighting unit usually found in a studio. Each monolight has its own independent power source. It does not depend on a centralized power supply as a “pack and head” system does
Having all the controls on the power pack makes it easier to change the settings of multiple flash heads in one place quickly one the other hand monolights come with the controls built directly into the light itself. So if you have multiple monolights, you’ll need to control and adjust the settings of each one separately. Head/power pack kits also offer faster flash durations than monolights, which can really come in handy when you want to freeze action during fast motion. They also have faster recycle times.
If you are shooting outdoors or with complicated modifier setups, you are going to need a lot of power to overcome the sun or the light loss caused by the modifiers. Head/pack systems have a big advantage in the power department. Whereas, if you’re shooting indoors or inside your studio, monolights will probably be more than enough for regular work.
Most lights, regardless of the brand or model, provide heads that come in the form of a strobe surrounded by a reflector. This allows you to control the spread of light. Their zoom reflector, like many others, provides the ability to attach a honeycomb grid for an even more focused spread, or other kinds of light modifiers used for different effects.
If your flash head does not come with a zoom reflector, you can find many types of wide or narrow reflectors sold as accessories. Wide reflectors produce a larger pool of light and a softer light quality, narrow reflectors produce smaller pools of light and a harsher light quality.
Most strobe lights allow you to completely remove the reflector and attach different kinds of light modifiers.
If you thin strobes are expensive are expensive, you can go for a speedlight, but in order to use you speedlight off camera, you will need a trigger. Also to use your speedlight with light modifiers, you will need an S-Type Speedlite Bracket
Check the list below to buy some lights
- Godox MS300 Studio Strobe
- Godox V1-C V1 Li-on TTL On-Camera Round Flash Speedlight
- Neewer TT560 Flash Speedlite
- Godox S-type Bracket
- Neewer 16 Channel Wireless Trigger
The two major types of light modifers are umbrellas and softboxes.
Reflecting umbrellas produce a diffused and soft light due to the larger size of the reflecting surface. They are mounted in such a way that the strobe light is actually facing away from the subject. Light from the strobe hits the inside of the umbrella and then bounces back towards the subject.
There are silver-lined, white, and gold tinted umbrellas. Silver-lined umbrellas are the most efficient and can focus light more narrowly than the other types. White umbrellas offer a wider spread of reflected light, and gold umbrellas produce a warm tone.
Also, there is a shoot through umbrella, using this type of umbrella, light pass through is to hit the subject with a soft light.
Softboxes on the other hand are usually square, rectangular or octagonal. They are lightweight boxes that come with a reflective inside and a translucent front. Softboxes come in different shapes and sizes and are attached to the front the strobe over the light source. Light emitted from the strobe head gets reflected inside the walls of the softbox and diffused through the box’s translucent front creating a soft, but more focused light source illuminating the model or scene.
A major difference between umbrella and a softbox is the fact that a softbox contains and control the spread of light. With an umbrella light spills beyond the boundaries of the reflective surface affecting the amount of light getting back to the subject. Also spilled light can hit walls and ceilings indoors causing it to reflect and bounce all over the place.
Some other tools that control and modify the quality of light are barn doors, snoots, and honeycomb grids. These are attached directly to your strobe head.
Snoots are conical shaped tools that narrow the distribution of light. These can be used to produce a very focused, harsh light. They are often used like a spot light or to light the background. They are also very handy as a rim or hair light to illuminate the model from the back.
Barn doors are flaps surrounding a strobe that can be opened or closed to control the light and prevent it from spilling. They don’t produce a concentrated and direct light like snoots, but they can also be useful depending on your needs.
Honeycomb grids are basically honeycomb shaped metallic grids that direct the light for a more focused spread. These come in different degrees. The smaller the grid cells the tighter the holes through which the light travels, and in turn the more focused the light becomes.
Flags are another type of light modifiers. A flag is any kind of opaque object placed in the way of light to better direct it, to prevent lens flare or to prevent it from spilling. A semi-translucent flag is called a scrim and is used to cut down on light spill.
Shop for some light modifiers
- Neewer 32 inches /80 centimeters Octagon Softbox
- Godox 80x80cm Softbox
- Neewer 24 x24 inches/60 x 60 Centimeters Wired Studio Softbox
- Andoer Metal Conical Snoot with Honeycomb Grid 5pcs Color Filter Kit
- Godox BD-04 Barn Door & Honeycomb Grid &4 Color Gel Filters
- Godox AK-R15 Honey Comb Grid
Grips and stands
Stands and grips are used to support your light sources, strobes, and also light modifiers or backdrops.
There are two main types of light stands: lightweight stands and C-stands. C-stands are more heavy duty. Both types come in varying sizes, lengths, and prices. Heights can usually be adjusted. Sandbags can be attached to weight the stand and better stabilize your lights.
When going for lightweight stand, always go for the one with shock absorber.
C-stands are very good, but are more expensive. They are heavy duty and very stable. C-stands typically don’t have air-shocks, so you need to pay attention while loosening your knobs so you don’t harm your gear.
C-stands are frequently used in the video industry due to their durability and stability. They can come with a number of attachments like boom arms that can be mounted onto the stand. These arms allow you to add reflectors, scrims, flags and other modifier and rotate them to any angle you wish.
The c-stand is strong enough to hold backgrounds and seemless white paper in addition to lights. They are also very useful when you’re shooting outdoors in windy conditions because their weight adds to their stability.
Buy a light stand
What ever form of lighting kit you are going for, always ensure to go for the best, you can also follow the links i have provided to buy what ever you want to buy.