Light it at All Costs
The Flash Addicts are driven to introduce their own light to everything – whether it needs it or not.
Their enjoyment is in adding that rim lighting, colouring backgrounds, and playing with the latest flash modifiers.
Stacks of Kit…
Armed with “poverty wizard” style radio triggers, light stands and a few Youngnuo speed-lite flashes, they head out literally “anywhere” and light stuff – usually people; anyone can model, usually unwilling mates will do… it’s the lighting which matters, that’s the enjoyment.
They use different coloured Gels in an attempt to atmosphere – reds, greens, blues are popular. They also have all the colour correction gels like CTO (orange) and CTB (blue) – or had – most of them have blown away in the wind on their last shoot.
They have a cupboard filled with light spheres, beauty dishes, flash benders, reflectors, flags, brollies and all kinds of sofboxes – most of which turned out to be useless, or they can’t use outside due to wind… and there’s the pile of broken flashes because of the wind blowing them over to their demise.
They have loads of locations in mind – though anywhere with Graffiti appeals most. Graffiti and dereliction are king.
Graffiti walls in dodgy areas – this adds to the fear of being mugged by a gang of youths… or chases from security guards in derelict buildings adds to the vibe.
Creating “drama” is what motivates them – on camera flash isn’t interesting, it’s not creative or hard enough. Off camera is sufficiently hard to be interesting – a technical self flagellation. It totally transforms the look, dark brooding backgrounds and near-black skies with Film Noir rim lighting. Bright warm days are turned into dark cold nights.
They have no need for light meters, preferring to walk on the wild side of using their histogram. Chimping is their main reference – usually looking at the camera back more than the model.
They probably use a 70-200 lens – it’s part of the uniform. It’s mainly for “appearance”, as even if clueless on how to set up the shots, the big lens makes everyone think they know what they are doing. It also helps when they want blurry backgrounds, their work is all about how cool their subject’s lit – not the background. Plus lighting a background is hard work, isn’t it?
The strobist type will worship David Hobby – by definition as he is the founder of Strobism. They have watched his videos and spend hours failing to recreate his images.