When renowned Canon Explorer of Light Joel Grimes photographed Detroit Piston’s basketball star Blake Griffin, he knew he wanted to create a grungy, dramatic set of images despite their pretty standard gym location. So Joel opted to photograph Blake on a simple white seamless backdrop, enabling him to composite in more interesting backgrounds in the edit room.
To create a more masculine, edgy lighting style, Joel utilized a three point lighting setup. As rim lights, Joel modifies two of the strobes with 2x3-foot rectangular softboxes and egg-crate grids behind his subject. This modification narrows the light spread, helps control potential lens flare, and pulls his subject off of the background.
Not only does this help highlight Blake’s physique, but it also makes it easier to pull him off the the backdrop for dramatic composites in post-production. For his key light, Joel modifies the third strobe with a 7-foot octabank. This large softbox gives Joel full, soft light coverage on his tall subject.