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Suggestions Please...
Old 01-05-2009, 11:19 PM   #1 (permalink)
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I am debating the effectiveness of the softbox I currently own. I want to use it as part of a mobile set-up. I prefer to use one strobe, reflectors and natural light. It's been packed away for a couple of years and never really used. However I am wondering if I should replace it with something larger. It is 32" x 32" with silver interior walls. Having never really put it to use I was wondering if you all could judge it's effectiveness as compared to other brands. The logo has worn off of the darn thing so I don't even remember who made it. I know I didn't pay a ton of money for it. Anyway, I sat a box (a Christmas present for someone I haven't seen yet) on a couch as a "subject" to see how the light behaves with and without the softbox baffles. Could someone please offer me some advice as to whether "it'll do" or if I should ditch it. I really would like one in a 4' model with a white interior but I'm not sure how much better it would perform.

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Re: Suggestions Please...
Old 01-06-2009, 01:42 AM   #2 (permalink)
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All need a reflector to lighten shadows, and the next test would be to photograph an object like your subject.. In other words, if you are going to shoot skin, shoot skin. People, people, dogs, dogs, and so on.
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Re: Suggestions Please...
Old 01-06-2009, 05:27 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I have two 32" Broncolor softboxes that are each 25 years old ... black canvas material, silver interior reflector, and a slightly yellowed front cover ... and even though I own a 5' octobox and a 36x48 softbox, I still use them on about 75% of my shoots. If you're shooting a lot of full length images, you might want a larger softbox, but for headshots or images up to "waist up" the 32 boxes are great! Of course ... if you're like me, you still want a biger softbox!!!!
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Re: Suggestions Please...
Old 01-06-2009, 08:37 AM   #4 (permalink)
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looks like it's doing its job to me...
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Re: Suggestions Please...
Old 01-08-2009, 11:24 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I use a large 5x7 foot translucent diffusor and place a strobe behind it. I use small wireless 580ex strobes and they light the panel up beautifully. I drop the wide angle lens down and place a filter under it to balance the strobes to any halogens I might use. I place the screen very close to my subject. The second flash is near the camera mounted behind a smaller diffusion panel. My lighting is very soft. Another way you can do it is to use a halogen worklight to light up the diffusion panel and use one strobe near the camera. Depending on what I'm after I will either use a halogen or a strobe for the background and/or the hair light. This setup is very inexpensive, portable, and extremely soft. You might want to get a filter sample book for other diffusion ideas. Remember the key to soft lighting is the size of the light source and the distance you place it from the subject. Keep it close for a soft effect.
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