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Setting Up the Shot: Commercial Studio Headshot

Here is a basic set up to achieve a commercial studio headshot. If you’ve never played with lights, it can be intimidating but once you just do it, you will find you have much more control and it’s not as scary as you imagine. This is a very basic set up with two lights. 1 Key light, 1 hair light and a white board for reflection.

The Gear:

  • 1 Photogenic Powerlight 1250 w/beauty dish
  • 1 Elinchrom D-lite 4 with a grid
  • 1 old piece of broken white piece of board

The Setup:

As you can see we have the beauty dish right in front on one side. Underneath her face, we have the white cardboard. In the back, notice we have a small hair light with a grid. This adds a nice touch to separate her from the back ground and I love how it adds a slight touch to her hair.

Here’s a picture of the setup.


Here’s me standing in for the model as we get the settings tweaked.


Camera Settings

Here are the settings I used and keep in mind these settings can be easily tweaked to match your camera body and needs.

ISO 100
Focal Length 85mm (85mm in 35mm)
Aperture f/4
Exposure Time 0.005s (1/200)

Heres the Final Image


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