Usually, I create theater publicity photos with fairly flat lighting so they will reproduce well in any newspaper. But I couldn’t bear to light Antigone that way. This production, by the Senga Classic Stage Company, is too dramatic for flat lighting, so I applied some techniques from last week’s FlashBus Tour to create images with a bit more tension.
I tried a new technique for this shoot. Instead of using my pop-up flash as a commander to control three off-camera flashes in manual mode, I used the SB-800 with a Gary Fong Lightsphere as an on-camera commander and fill light. I set up two off-camera, umbrella-bounced SB-600s in manual mode, but I set the on-camera flash to TTL (-2) so I could move closer or farther from the subject without having to manually reset the exposure. It wasn’t perfect, but it worked pretty well. I got a nice, soft fill light from the Lightsphere and some harder, directional light from the umbrellas off to the side.
Once again, thanks to David Hobby and Joe McNally for offering the FlashBus Tour I attended last week. The techniques they demonstrated will help me produce publicity photos more worthy of the dramatic works presented in my community.