Figure 1-2. Focal length requirements
PART C - PORTRAIT LIGHTING
In this part of the lesson, you will learn about light sources for portrait photography, to identify the five
lights used in portrait work and their placement in relation to the desired lighting technique, and lighting
ratio to be employed. The function of each light in the setting will be discussed. In addition, the basic
portrait lightings will be covered. Also, you will learn to use reflectors, diffusers, and barndoors.
The success of a portrait is equally dependent on the lighting and the posing (which will be covered in
the next lesson) of the subject. The manner in which the subject is lighted can actually set the mood of a
portrait. The best portrait lighting will simulate natural sunlight. This is because we are accustomed to
seeing faces illuminated from above and to one side, with shadows cast downward and to one side or the
other. Light coming from below eye level casts shadows upward and produces an unnatural, ghostly
effect. Good portrait lighting shows off the subject to the best advantage, emphasizing the form and
expressiveness of the facial features. Lighting which appears most pleasing and natural in a portrait
produces prominent highlights on the forehead, nose, cheeks, and chin with sufficient shadows to round
out the facial features.