How to Use an Octodome in Portrait Photography

Octodome, Octobox, Octobank…Whatever you happen to call the eight-sided lighting modifier, one thing remains the same: the variety of lighting effects you can achieve by using one. If you’re familiar with using a standard softbox then you’ll probably be able to make the transition to the Octodome pretty easily. In the video below, Jay P. Morgan, breaks down the differences between the modifiers and how to use them to get any number of light patterns:

“Light is about control. This gives you more control. When you add a grid to the equation, now you can get your light source really narrow.”


In a nutshell, a small, medium, or large Octodome will have about the same coverage and light fall off—12ft with a one stop fall off in Morgan’s trials. The difference is, as Morgan explained, the quality of light. The smaller the light source, the more directional the light will be, producing more shadows. Whereas a larger Octodome will have a much more powerful wrapping effect, essentially muting any shadows in the background.

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