Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

Modeling light only?

Prime Creator

Most of our traditional family portraits are created in the studio with strobes. Last year, though, I started experimenting with just using the modeling light. (I know, I know...there are constant lights out there now...but somehow this feels different to me.)

When I used the modeling light with the FE 85mm F1.4 GM (SEL85F14GM) and dragged the shutter - combined with the dancers' movement, I was able to create images like these:

Gonzalez-1475 BW Large.jpeg

Henry-1193 BW Large.jpeg

Gonzalez-1514 Large.jpeg

Dix-1250 r fx MED Large.jpeg

Of course, we all know the Sony files don’t come in with grain like this, so it was added in LR to get a more film-like feel. 😊

I also used the modeling light to create this, also with the 85mm GM:

Berckmuller-1823 fx Small.jpeg

What are your thoughts? Have you used the modeling light alone? Does it feel different to you than using constant lights?


Community Manager
Community Manager

Monica, these are beautifully done! I love the movement. This makes me want to try something new because I wouldn't have thought to use a modeling light in this way.

Thank you! It was definitely something new for me, but I love how they turned out. I added some camera shake on a few to exaggerate the feeling of motion. Also, the one with girl with the fabric around her neck - I used a fan to get movement in the fabric because she was standing still.

Prime Creator

It is a great look. Are you working on a tripod at very slow shutter speeds? I imagine it takes a bit of experience to know what shutter speed to shoot at to get a particular blur effect.

Hi Ira, for the black-and-white images I took the camera off the camera stand and deliberately added a bit of shake as I took the image. For the color images, I had the camera on the stand. The color portrait of the single girl I used a fan to get movement in the fabric.