Vintage Theater Portrait Photography Challenge

Photography challenges are quite an interesting way to keep yourself inspired. They also keep your creative juices flowing and break the monotony. In this video, photographer Gavin Hoey takes us on a secret portrait challenge. He has no idea about the model, the styling, or the location:

Hoey ends up shooting at Roundhill Picture Palace which has very limited space for a photoshoot. Keeping in mind the space limitations, he just uses a softbox with a grid to start with.

Hoey’s idea is to include some of the ambient light in the shot and build it up from there.

To ensure that he’s not stuck taking photos from the same spot in the confined space, he makes sure to move around to shoot from different angles.

portrait with side lighting

Next, to separate the model from her surroundings, Hoey adds in a rim light at an angle behind the model. The purpose of this light is to brighten up the model’s shoulder and separate her from the background. He also makes sure that its power is set at the minimum value.

To make things more dramatic, Hoey brings in his smoke machine. And because there’s smoke, he also hands a fake cigarette to the model. With the key light and the rim light working together, here are some of the results:

side light portrait with smoke

It’s amazing to see how Hoey understood the challenges of the confined space and worked around it. The results speak volumes about his creativity.

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