Fashion Pics and How I Shot Them

Shot at the George V Hotel for Simply You Copyright Carla Coulson

I am a natural light photography girl wherever I can squeeze it. Sometimes due to the season or the day, the light isn’t doing what I would like it to do. One always needs a plan B especially in Paris. The above photo was taken on one of those days. It was mid November and the winter had truly set in.

The George V Hotel were kind of enough to allow us to shoot in their beautiful foyer but I only had 15mins. My asssistant put a pro foto flash outside the window to the left of the model with the aim to create the effect of window light on a sunny day. We didn’t open the doors as we wanted the effect of the shadows of the door frame to give it a real feel. The light was positioned almost parallel to the girl and you can see the drop off on the right side of her face. We left the flash head bare. And in 15 mins with a simple light set up we had our shot.

Shot at the George V Hotel for Simply You Copyright Carla Coulson

I posted this pic Monday and had a lot of enquiries as to how I shot it. So here goes with the details.

I set up a large softbox on a profoto flash almost parallel to the bar which created the light that is falling on the back and left hand side of the girl. You can see where her shadow is and that will give you a good idea of where the lightbox was. The right hand side of her face was obscured from the light so to light this side of her face we added a second light with a snoot on it. A snoot fits onto the end of the light head and allows you to control the light to a defined spot. We pointed the light with the snoot on it at the side of her face in the dark and voila the photo.

If you have a couple of simple light set-ups that you know backwards to can work quickly and be guaranteed to get your shot.

Light and Love

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Heather in Arles
10 years ago

Yay Carla! Thank you so much for stopping by chez moi, it made me realize that although I could have sworn that I had signed up to subscribe to your stunning new site, I hadn’t somehow–bah, oops. This post is exactly all that I have missed out on–such precise beauty and the goods on how to make it happen. 🙂 My honey is diving into the world of studio lighting and I have assisted him a few times–it is so fascinating! Carving with light…

June Tan
10 years ago

Great info and great photos…I’ve been playing around on a virtual lighting studio
lately just to see what effects would look like.

Peggy Braswell
10 years ago

Adore your blog-you are so generous!

Paris Rendez-vous
10 years ago

Carla…these shots are gorgeous….and your wonderful way of lighting them is amazing. Truly talented and creative people never fear sharing their techniques….bravo to you!

Jessica Flett
10 years ago

Carla, I am loving your new website. Your blogs are gorgeous and informative. Thank you so much for being so generous with tips and advice. I look forward to reading your posts and looking at your gorgeous photography. I love your books.