One-Light LED Portraiture

LED lighting setupLEDs may represent the future of studio lighting but a number of the currently available options come with a caveat or two for the new professional or aspiring pro. Some LED solutions are affordable but may be too physically small for efficient use in a studio or they may be large enough but too expensive for the shooter who just wants to dip their toes into the LED waters. Measuring 14 x 7½ x 2 ¾-inches and costing less than two hundred bucks, Flashpoint’s 500C LED light appears to be a Goldilocks solution for the LED newbie who wants to see what all the fuss is about.

LED lighting setup

1/40 sec at f/5 and ISO 800

Like most LED light sources that I’ve tested previously, the Flashpoint 500C was originally designed for video applications but it can be a useful tool for still photographers too. Designed to run on AC power the 500C can be powered by an optional ($199.95) 162.8-Watt Flashpoint V Lock Battery for shoots located far from a convenient AC source. To ensure safe operation, the battery’s circuits monitor and protect cell balance, temperature, overcharge and over discharge. The V Lock Battery can also power an additional device and has four-LEDs that show remaining battery capacity.

The setup you see at top right used the white wall in my 11×15-foot home studio as a background to create a somewhat high key look. The Flashpoint 500C placed high and at camera left and a 32-inch Flashpoint reflector at camera right as shown. Looking retro 1960’s the always beautiful Pam Simpson wearing a blue leather dress was photographed with a Canon EOS 60D with EF-S15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM lens (at 55mm.)

Author: Joe Farace

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