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Steve Bedell Posted: Oct 25, 2011 Published: Sep 01, 2011 44 comments

Several of my fellow portrait photographers have been using cool lights for years. Interestingly, they have not abandoned their flash units but continue to use both, depending on the situation. Having been a strobe/available light photographer for the most part, I was eager to both find out how well they worked and for what subjects they’d be most suited. Interfit was kind enough to send me their very economical ($340 street price) set of two lights, each with an eight-sided softbox, so I could find out for myself. Could they do everything my studio flash units could? Were they a better choice for some subjects than others? After a few weeks of testing, I had my answers.

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Steve Bedell Posted: Feb 01, 2003 0 comments

Jack Holowitz

Jack Holowitz is the male half of the incredibly talented team of Jack and Nancy Holowitz from Springfield, Massachusetts. Nancy is known for her sensitive portraiture, and Jack has gained a great reputation for his eye-popping black and white work that includes nudes and...

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Steve Bedell Posted: Nov 01, 2000 0 comments

When portrait photographers get together, they talk about light, lighting, and lighting equipment. Right after money and cameras, it's a major topic. Especially the "big four," because most photographers use a four light setup in their studio. Let...

Steve Bedell Posted: Jul 01, 2004 0 comments

Regular readers will note that my articles are usually about techniques, not test reports. But when there's a new film out there for portrait photographers, that's right up my alley. The majority of my work is portraiture and I've long...

Steve Bedell Posted: Jan 14, 2013 Published: Dec 01, 2012 0 comments

We all know what softboxes look like. They’re big, small, square, rectangular, sometimes round or shaped like octagons—we’ve seen them all. But there is nothing quite like the 16x60 Light Bender from Larson. It is long (48”), narrow (12”), and looks like a strip light that someone grabbed by the ends and yanked toward the middle. In this test I’ll take a look at just what this oddly-shaped light can do and why a photographer may consider adding it to his or her arsenal of light modifiers.

 

The Light Bender was designed by well-known photographer Larry Peters from Ohio and is produced and sold by Larson Enterprises.

After unpacking, I mounted the box to the backplate, a really snug fit, and then added the speed ring that allows me to mount and swivel the box on my light. After assembly, I mounted it on my Paul C. Buff Einstein unit. The light mounts dead center and the “wings” fly out to the side. There is no interior baffle in the design so the light is much stronger in the center and drops off rather dramatically as you move toward the edges.

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Steve Bedell Posted: Feb 01, 2008 0 comments

Being a photographer for 30 years has helped me to become more acutely aware of my surroundings. I find myself at all times watching how light pours over faces, how compositions just jump out at me, and how micro landscapes abound everywhere in daily life. So, it was with great surprise one day that I noticed just how blissfully unaware I was of my surroundings, and that maybe my...

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Steve Bedell Posted: Feb 01, 2001 0 comments

I get a whole new way of seeing things when I put black and white film in the camera. It seems like I have a little Photoshop Desaturate command that goes off in the back of my head and suddenly I see everything in shades of gray. Anyone who's...

Steve Bedell Posted: Oct 24, 2014 0 comments

Profoto B1 lights are the first studio lights to feature built-in TTL. They also have their own battery and controller so you can go on location and just pop up a light and start shooting. As of this writing they are available only for Canon, but by the time you read this the Nikon version should be available as well. To me, this is tailor-made for location shooting, so that’s where I did my tests.

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Steve Bedell Posted: Sep 09, 2014 0 comments

The first time I saw the Ice Light was at a trade show a couple of years ago. Models were walking around the trade show carrying what looked to be lightsabers from Star Wars. It sure was a great way to get attention, but I dismissed it as a gimmick, especially when I saw the price—$500 for a stick of light! But later I got to see Jerry Ghionis, who came up with the idea, use the Ice Light at one of his workshops. Hmm, maybe there is some merit to this thing after all.

Steve Bedell Posted: Jul 10, 2012 Published: Jun 01, 2012 0 comments

The Litepanels MicroPro Hybrid does double duty as both a constant light source and a flash. The light itself is made of black plastic and is fairly small, at 5.5x3.75x1.5”, and weighs only about a pound when you include the mounting bracket and six AA batteries (standard or rechargeable, and there is an optional AC adapter available). The top has a knurled knob to turn things on and acts as a dimmer so you can control output in stepless fashion. Vents are located around all sides. The battery door, flash ready light, flash sync, and input for the optional power adapter are all located on the back. The bottom is threaded so you can attach it to a light stand or to the (included) nicely made aluminum ball joint with a bottom end that slides into your camera’s shoe mount. Also included is a very short PC cord to be used when using the flash mode, plus there are warming, diffusion, and tungsten conversion filters that snap in easily over the front panel. All this fits into a nicely padded zippered bag.

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