The ideal situation would be to bring the subject into a studio, where you have lots of room, appropriate backgrounds, nearby washroom/makeup mirrors, funky music and great lighting. That’s the way I would like it, but that rarely seems to be the way it works out.
With executive portraits, time is always an issue. In the crazy 9-5 business world, no executive worth his seniority could possibly break away from the daily issues to travel to a studio. And when shooting teams, or factory workers or families, inevitably the only way to get the photos done is to take the studio to them. The mountain to Mohammed.
Over the years we’ve tried lots of ways to make this happen. We have portable light stands, portable umbrellas and other light modifiers, and several external flash units. And backdrops large and small. Everything but a wind machine. It works, but it isn’t a studio.
Recently, after years of deliberation, we made the big move and bought a complete outfit of studio strobes. It’s all Bowens products and it fits beautifully into a custom case. It’s portable if you have a vehicle, but not if you’re going farther than you can drag the wheeled cases. However, despite the increase in size and complexity, we’re completely overcome by the quality of the light and the ease of use. If I’d realized how much easier/better this makes portraiture, I’d have done this years ago.
The quality of images we’ve been achieving is spectacular, and in my view, very professional. The light is infinitely easier to control. And with a flash light-meter and modelling lights, far easier to predict.
The lights are magnificent. We have enough power to light a car-shoot, or to do multiple lights on a large group. It’s so much easier! And with the camera tethered to a laptop, it’s easier for the clients to review the work in progress. That’s a real plus for everyone.
So portraits? Sure, bring ’em on. We can come to you. Or you can come to us.