Having just finished watching the Strobist DVD's the one I think I took the most from was the 'conference room head shot' on location disk. No sooner had I finished watching it than I get asked at work if I would mind doing a couple of new head shots for the training team. They wanted updated pictures for there bio's and for the web site.
It just so happened that I had also been talking to Greg Cee about the 'tinker tube' background he had just built (a DIY version of the background DH uses in the video) and how effective it looked.
I rushed off to Bunnings and picked up a few dollars worth of PVC plumbing pipe and knocked together my own collapsible back drop using some old black cotton fabric. It ended up at 2.2m x 1.75m, but breaks down into a pile of tubes and a sheet of fabric in about 30 seconds (all of which fit easily in the car).
For the shoot, I set the background up and propped it against a wall (I am going to add legs to it I think, I just need some more connectors). I pointed a Sunpak 383 on half power at it and used a variety of coloured gels to alter the background colour.
For the front lights I used a home made softbox as my main light and a shoot through translucent umbrella as a fill. I also added a third SB-28 with a grid as a hair light.
I had Chris and Clio stand about 10 to 12 feet from the back ground and I was standing about the same distance in front of them. I used the full width of the board room to help throw the background out of focus and to try and prevent the gelled background light bouncing off the ceiling and contaminating the main lights.
I did want to try firing the background flash through a pile of glasses to make an interesting pattern, but I ran out of time so that will have to wait until next time! :)
Learn how to light: www.strobist.com