Have you ever wanted to create a warm, summer portrait in unfavorable weather conditions? Photographers, especially those living in northern climates, often can not go outdoors in all seasons to capture images with beautiful backdrops or sunny lighting. Master Craftsman portrait photographer Jim Schmelzer set out to create a summer-themed portrait in the dead of winter in his studio earlier this year.

To create this summer portrait setting, Jim utilizes a 3-light set up and a green Bokeh backdrop. The background light is a gelled Skylux LED modified by a stripbank. The gel that Jim adds changes the daylight-balanced continuous light source to a warm, tungsten color temperature.

Jim’s hair light is a second Skylux LED modified by another Westcott Pro Stripbank. This light serves to fill in the shadows on his model created by the large overhead light. The hair light is also positioned above his model, creating a natural sunlight effect.

Jim’s main light is a third Skylux LED modified by a 59″ Zeppelin Deep Parabolic softbox. This larger modifier produces a broad output and creates a round sun-like catchlight in his model’s eyes.

Jim mounts a 42″ white Illuminator Reflector below his main light, reflecting more light onto his subject. This reflector helps to fill in shadows on the models face, creating a clamshell lighting effect. Jim’s final images are stunning, successfully portraying a summer portrait in the midst of a Detroit winter.

Jim Schmelzer and the Zeppelin Visit Jim Schmelzer’s workshop website to check out more lighting tutorials from this photography expert.

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