Smash Photo, Long Beach


If you are like me, you may have wondered at some point in your daily photography work, ow can I produce more in less time with less effort??Well friends I think I may have come across an answer.
No big secret here, but I am going to tell you the simplest way to cut your lighting setup time in half?or more, and it is easy.

Are you ready? The answer is below, read on.

Lets backup for a moment and I will give you a quick bit of background on how I decided constant lights are needed in my photography workflow. Yep, that is also the secret to getting more work done and cut your production time all without sacrificing quality or flexibility in your lighting setups. Constant lighting is not a revolution in lighting, this is something that has been used for a very long time in photography and in the movie industry. The reasons I choose not to use constant lights are two simple reasons; heat and cost and for some brands of lights, a very prohibitive costs. Also my work is primarily photographing people both in studio and on location, strobe lights made the most sense for most of my work.


New equipment usually means time to test and get to know the characteristics of the equipment. With my first shoot happening the next day, I had no time for such testing. So the first opportunity I had was also going to have to be the first time testing the lights, not an ideal situation.

Luckily I was going to be shooting some cabinets for a local custom cabinet maker, who also happen to be a friend so if I ran a little long on the shoot or had to go back for another shot I was covered. I figured it might take me a bit longer to get familiar with the setup, make adjustments, etc?
I can honestly tell you from opening the shipping box to turning on the power switch on the first light went by quick. If you have ever assembled anything from Ikea your good to go, if you can do it without reading the instructions you go straight to the front of the line. Everything needed was in the Britek Kit and I was ready for my shoot. From box to first photo went by in half the time I would have expected, so already we are saving production time.

As I already mentioned, we knew the client pretty well, in fact his shop is next door to our studio so I figured I could take my time with the lights and did not have to worry about any time constraints while I take the time to learn and adjusting to the lights. I knew right away that I wanted to simulate a large day light window to give the kitchen cabinets the look most people would see in their homes.

I don really know how to explain just how easy this shoot was with the Britek Lights. Simple is not what I would call it, but once I positioned the lights and switched them on I was happy. It just makes sense when you get immediate feedback. Even with instant previews on the back LCD of your camera, having the exact light where you want it is a great time saver for production. I may have even been able to shoot this setup with just one of the Britek Cool Lights, but since I had both already in place it just made the photography assignment easier using both cool lights.
Setup and adjustments were easy, if I saw an area that wasn getting enough light I just moved the lights, if I saw a reflection I didn like I adjusted the light, if I needed more or less light I flipped a switch. Sure this isn any different than any other shoot, but the difference is I could do this without ever taking a single photo. What you see is what you get, the color temperature was right around 5000k, even when changing power output by switching one or more of the four lights on or off, light temperature never changed. Much better and easier than other options I have read about.

I should also mention that we are shooting this in the back room of the cabinet makers shop, any area that is not air-conditioned and a confined space, with low ceilings. Add to that this was a very warm day in Southern California and any additional heat was just going to make things even more uncomfortable. Luckily as the Britek product name implies, the Cool Lights added no noticeable heat to the environment even after being on for an hour constantly in the confined and did mention UN-air-conditioned space. Switching on the overhead spot lights I could feel the extra warmth almost immediately. It felt like the cabinet guy may have been using hot lamps you find in the fast food restraints instead of normal bulbs!

Just two Britek constant Cool Lights were all I needed. For additional softness to the lights I choose to use a 1-stop scrim in front of the lights.

Strobes are great, will I stop using them, not likely. Will I find ways to incorporate the Britek constant lights in my regular work? You bet, as often as I can!

Link to the Britek FK5000 lighting kit page

1 2 3 4 5

Share & Connect...

Share |