Lighting is key to my work as a wedding and portrait photographer
At the end of most weddings the couple, when looking at their pictures, almost always say "I didn't even know you were doing that picture." For me, as a 6'5" wedding photographer, these words of high praise make me really happy.
Because during the day I'm all over the place with my two cameras and a big giant light on a chrome three legged light stand doing pictures. Sometimes it's in a corner, sometimes it's outside a window, sometimes it's right in front of me. It gets used all day long. The Profoto lights I use are powered with a lithium ion battery and the bigger light, called a B1, has three batteries and a fast charger to put one on during the day.
The picture at the head of this post was from a wedding at the Shepherdsfield venue a ways outside of Terrebonne. A storm blew through and I grabbed the couple and walked them out to the cliff behind the house. We got there just in time for me to catch the last light on this cloud and make the picture.
The young lady holding the light is Hannah Mavis whose mom used to do triathlons with us, but then got more into bike riding only. She was a great assistant who helped with the light for numerous weddings. I'll blog more about her in the portraits section because we did some really nice senior portraits of her in the aspen grove near Tumalo Falls. She went to college at Montana State and the last picture I've seen of her was something like her riding a mountain bike on a trail.
Back to the picture. That white umbrella was a tool I was experimenting with for portraits. As you can see, most of the light bounced back at Hannah. I love using it, but in this case maybe a soft box to throw the light more at Melissa and JD would work better. But you know what? It still worked perfectly and put some nice light on the ground they were standing on so they didn't look like they were standing on a black blob.
Here's the final picture:
If you notice the trees behind them being a totally black silhouette. They would be the same, and this picture useless without the Profoto being held off to the side.
Knowing when, when not, and where to use a light like this is an important ability for a photographer. It takes a lot of practice and the need for continuous learning and experimentation to learn how to use it properly. You can see it when you look for it in my Bend Wedding Photography and Bend Portrait Photography websites.