Top Five Tricks and Tips for Shooting with an Umbrella
With a full week of April showers here in Chicago, we’ve got umbrellas on the brain. Try these great umbrella tips from Calumet’s own Walter Malabehar to see how you can get the most out of this versatile light modifier during your next photo session:
- The standard 36″ shoot-thru umbrella creates a beautiful soft light effect. But to take it a step further, and to produce a look similar to a beauty dish, try placing a Speedotron Lightsox Diffuser over the inside of your umbrella, and shoot through both the Lightsox and the umbrella. You will have to drill a little hole in the Lightsox to fit over your umbrella’s shaft, but the results are well worth it.
- Try using the umbrella as a bounce reflector without a light system on it by placing it on the opposite side of the main light. This will give you a wrap-around fill light, not the standard straight bounce. A handy umbrella adapter and light stand are required for this set up.
- Mounting two small umbrellas together on one stand can serve as a large strip bank light source for full-length portraits. The top umbrella mounts to your light source and the bottom umbrella can be attached using a studio clamp.
- Use one large 60” umbrella tilted straight down on your subject and a small 36” umbrella on the ground as your fill. It will give you one amazing soft, smooth portrait, great for head-shots.
- Here’s a trick to use to mimic a snoot, beauty dish, or a smooth soft light effect. First do not open the umbrella all the way, but keep it closed on your light system. Don’t worry, this will give you a more direct, but very soft light source. Have fun playing around with this trick, which can produce dramatic, Hollywood-style portraits.
Feeling inspired to start reworking your umbrella ? We’ve got them on sale with our April Showers Umbrella Sale now through 4/24/2013 for 25% off, or buy in bulk and save even more: when you buy two you’ll get the third one free!
Content Contributed By: Walter Malabehar | Portfolio