Good solution for indoor lighting?
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Old 12-03-2007   #1
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Cool Good solution for indoor lighting?

Hi everyone. I just purchased two Promaster 300W lights for 90 each and stands for 45 each. With tax I was at @ $285.00. They have variable power, which I like. Here is my dilema. Would I be better off going with the 1000W jobbies, or is 2x300 (along with umbrellas, reflectors, etc. acceptable?) I am also open to keeping these and getting an additional 1000W in the future.

For now I am going to try to minimize flash work and want to use these studio lights.....here is the link for the lights.

Promaster

Thanks in advance for your help.

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Old 12-04-2007   #2
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Default Re: Good solution for indoor lighting?

More is better.
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Old 12-04-2007   #3
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Default Re: Good solution for indoor lighting?

Quarts lights are great if you don't mind agonizingly slow shutter speeds (if you want good DOF) or wide open apertures for little DOF with faster shutter speeds, all the while using your fast (expensive) lenses, not too mention you will be able to heat your entire home even if you live in Alaska by simply switching these suckers on for 10 minutes.

Oh and if you are photographing children which always seem to have the knack to move at the exact same instant that the shutter is open, you will really get some interesting blurred images which might win some artistic photo contests, but Mom will be mad! Another neat thing about quarts lights is that your subject's will have lots of sweat running off of their faces and dripping off the end of their noses. If you can capture that droplet at just the right moment just at the tip of their nose it will really look neat.

Flash all the way baby. No heat, decent DOF, no blurrred images, you can use regular lenses and a low ISO.

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Old 12-04-2007   #4
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Default Re: Good solution for indoor lighting?

Hi Benji: I am terrible at using flash, I get very poor results. Is there a compromise in using the compact fluorescent lights? They produce some pretty bright light with little heat.

I am not totally against using a flash, but I wanted the above mentioned Promaster lights to be a good "starting point" and the 580EX flash I have to be more of a fill, use a reflector, etc. I also didn't want to use the 1000w lights for the reasons you sighted, lots of heat!
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Old 12-04-2007   #5
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Default Re: Good solution for indoor lighting?

I agree with Benji all the way. Alllllll the way.

Maybe the term flash is throwing you off?
Flashes are usually the little guys with no modeling lights.

Strobes are the big guns, and good ones have built in modeling lights so you can see your results before capture and would solve all of the issues Benji has pointed out with your hot lights.

And really, you'll most likely be risking a fire hazard using your lights with light modifiers. Certainly with the 1000w.
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Old 12-05-2007   #6
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Default Re: Good solution for indoor lighting?

Cigarnut,

Jacque is right. You are perhaps confusing the two terms. While both are flash, studio flash units or strobe) doesn't attach to the camera and can put out some really beautiful light when used correctly. There is a learning curve however. Another thing mixing an on camera flash unit like the 580 EX and tungsten lights is not a good idea. Each have entirely different color temperatures

I don't own nor have I used the new flourescent Spiderlights so I can't comment on them but I did read on Monte's website a while back that at least one person wasn't all that satisfied with the power of them.

Ben
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Old 12-05-2007   #7
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Default Re: Good solution for indoor lighting?

Cigarnut,
I believe the most overlooked part of picture making is what Benji mentions as "there is a learning curve". Like life itself there are few if any "free lunches" Some believe that when they find the right tool that everything
they point their camera at will be wonderful and flawless. It just "Aint so"
because with most things worthwhile there is an attached "learning curve".
It is not one bit easier to work with "hot lights" than it is studio strobes! Both require testing, practice, more testing and a lot more practice to absorb a portion of that learning curve. Some folks never do, but those who are dedicated and stick with it, learn from their mistakes. (we All make them) Will improve and learn to see what the light is doing, is a highlight burning out a shoulder or forhead? The shadows create the modeling on the face, so you must learn where exactly to place the highlights and shadows. I don't believe anyone ever learned the things to look for when illuminating a portrait or object over night. It takes a lot of hard work and effort to learn to see just a few of the things that folks like Benji and others have Forgotten.

If I had just gone out and purchased "Hot lights" I would put them to work
and wring them out, use them untill I was certain if I loved em or hated them. Some folks can sit still for a long exposure, however a lot can't.
Perhaps many failures as well as successes will occur before you reach your plateau. Just keep looking at the work of "Old Master Painters" see where they placed their highlights and shadows. Compare them to your heros in todays photography and you will generally find the O.M. P.'s were pretty close in the ways they rendered the portrait. Will be looking forward to seeing your progress with your new lights! Still life is an excellent way to study light and shadow with "hot lights" or any other kind of light for that matter.

C Webb


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