VW Beetle in the studio





Have been looking into what other lighting fixtures are useable for in studio photography. This is a commercially available fluorescent fixture available from a local distributor. The goal was to find the most color correct bulbs. These are daylight balanced and create a very nice light when it is place through a 1/2 grid silent from the Rag Place in California. What I have suspended above the “Bug” is a 8×8 frame on two rolling stands. This particular frame is from Matthews in California. Depending on the subject, I like adding/using a large diffusion for lighting a shiny curved object. In many cases the diffusion needs to be larger than you think. Our magical brain has a way of filtering out all those little reflections before we see a proof up on the computer screen.  We are using a D800 tethered to a Mac running Capture One Pro.

What I have really found handy are the adjustable tables that are available at Sam’s and Costco. That is the table that the car is sitting on. It adjusts to varying heights and can be useful as a prop table, makeup table or a shoot table as I am showing here. I think they are only around 50 to 60 dollars and well worth the investment. We have several. They also have one that folds in half that is around 40 dollars. Happy shooting


Pour Shot




Friday with Dr. Dan resulted in this pour shot.

FourSquare 20×20 Box with Grid, Set Left = 1/32 each 2x SB 900

Top Right = 1/16 SB 900 with red gel Not Shown

Lower Left  = 1/64 SB 800 with red gel Not Shown

Background Blue Through Plastic Sheet= SB900 @ 1/128 and ZootSnoot with Blue gel

Nikon D800, Nikon 100 mm Macro, F-11, 1/160 sec, ISO 800


What was neat in planning this shot for the blog was research at one of our local plastic supply houses. They had all kinds of textured plastic which is what we used for the background. I only bought one to see how it worked. So now when I need something unique I will definitely go back for more research. The product was available on a roll and you purchased by the foot. I spent around eight dollars for this piece.

We tried water, vodka, Karo Syrup thinned with water but eventually through trial and error used glycerin diluted with water and cough syrup to get the color. Now I warn you … be prepared if you choose to try this the mixture is very sticky and makes a beautiful mess. We did not think that it would splash as far as it did but we got it all over the table, floor, background, stands, the box and the camera stand.

The other nifty piece of this puzzle are the two pieces of clear plexi that were cut to match the martini glasses base so that we could suspend them. We used hot glue to adhere the glasses to the plexi but in hindsight I probably would use clear museum putty or gel. Just look it up on Google or Yahoo to find a source. The hot glue worked well but the surface tension wasn’t quite strong enough for the glass to hold it for a long period of time. The total time we spent on this exercise was just around four hours. I spent an additional two hours getting the plexi cut, purchasing the background and the glycerin.

FourSquare and the Quadra

FourSquare FSK30 30" softbox with the elinchrom quadra head with reflector, diffuser. and bare head


We have had several photographers ask if they could use their Elinchrom Quadra in a FourSquare Box. The answer is yes. It is a very easy mount to solve with just a mini mount and a stud that comes with a 026 Manfrotto Stand adapter. You use a mini mount and screw it into the stud and you are ready to go. Like the image on the bottom left.

The top three images and bottom right use the  same adapter but mounts a single head into a center mount on the FourSquare Block. Either way works. The most even light comes from mounting the head on the center mount and removing the reflector.

FourSquare Speedring Plate


This is something new for FourSquare that I have been tinkering with. While we have our spindles for retrofitting to other boxes, we have one customer who wanted a “Make it Eight” to fit into a Chimera Octa box using there speed ring. Well I took this as a challenge and came up with this solution.  I am only showing one half of a “Make it Eight”, just a standard FourSquare mounted to the ring.  As of today (3-6-2013) we have a few that fit the Wafer/iConcepts speed ring (shown) and a few that fit the larger Chimera 7.3/185mm speed ring. If there is enough interest we will put it up in the LightwareDirect store.

If this is something that interests you lets us know. We don’t even have a price yet! Oh You gotta have your own ring! Better known as, we don’t sell the speed rings!