c. Snoots. Snoots are cylinders, open at both ends, usually made of metal and painted black.
They are used at the front of a spotlight to limit and control the size of the circular light beam projected
by the unit. Short wide snoots give a large circle of light. Long narrow snoots give a narrow circle of
light. A cardboard tube or black rolled paper can be used for a snoot when you need to improvise.
d. Umbrellas. Umbrellas work much like the reflectors used on floodlights and provide an
excellent means of converting specular light into soft, diffused light. They are usually used with a
spotlight. The light unit is pointed away from the subject; the umbrella is attached in front of the light
and reflects or bounces the light back and onto the subject. The reflected light falling on the subject is of
a softer, more diffuse quality than the light originally emitted by the source.
The reflecting surface of the umbrella determines the quality of the light. Umbrellas are usually made
with a matte, white surface that provides a very soft, completely diffused light. Some umbrellas are
constructed with a shiny, metallic surface. Metallic umbrellas throw a somewhat specular light but the
light will be softer and spread over a larger area than the light emitted by the original light source.
This completes lesson 1 and your introduction to portraiture, portrait equipment, and lighting. Before
proceeding to lesson 2, complete the practice exercise on the following pages. Check your answers with
the practice exercise answer and feedback sheet. If any of your answers are incorrect, review the area
indicated until you understand the material. After successfully completing the practice exercise, proceed
to lesson 2.