Photography Help: Ring Light Recommendation

I often get asked how I get such lovely beauty lighting in my head shots. 

 

Photographers look at the catch lights in the eyes of the subject and can see the shape of the light modifier. In most cases for my head shots it is a ring of white light, like a polo mint :)

 


Photographers usually assume it is a beauty dish, its actually not though. If you are not familiar with them these are big, clunky, heavy things that need to be added to a light stand to use.

 

The reason I don't use one is because I couldn't shoot on location with it, at least not easily.

 

The next option would be the ring flash modifiers. These are portable but don't in my view have a nice quality of light, they are too small and the size of a light source directly affects the softness of the light.

 

 



 

The next thing to try would be a macro led light.

 

 



 

These are cool because you can use them for video, but again the quality of light is harsh. They are really, really awesome for macro lighting, I used this same light for this cool macro coin shot.

 

 

There are all useful for what they do, but not what I wanted. I needed the softness of a big modifier without all the problems associated with a large modifier, like weight.

So on to the point of this post!

I saw one of these in use at a workshop and new it would be perfect.  Its actually for macro work but I have been putting it to great use as a head shot light.

 

 



 

It is light in weight and big in size, and creates a nice diffuse light with your own flash jammed in the back.

 

For a straight up flash modifier its a little pricey, but worth every penny.  Look at the results:

But that is with a professional model.....

However pretty much anyone I take a photo of with this looks awesome straight from camera!

 This is just a normal Dad at a Judo event, no posing!

This is just a normal Dad at a Judo event, no posing!

 A Security Guard with cool mutton chops, at a dance event in Belfast

A Security Guard with cool mutton chops, at a dance event in Belfast

 Grace, from Starbucks, just a regular member of staff, looking awesome with the ring at more of a distance

Grace, from Starbucks, just a regular member of staff, looking awesome with the ring at more of a distance

 a two second shot with one of the dancers at the event.

a two second shot with one of the dancers at the event.

Its a lovely light modifier, but the main reason I love it is its light, I can use it anywhere and move about covering an event, but with professional lighting :)

 

Its rare for me to recommend kit on my blog but a few fellow photographers have asked me about this so I figured I should share my findings.  If you want to buy any of these click the links in this post, ill get a few pennies as reward for letting you into my secrets, or just visit your own favourite retailer, its no big deal.  I hope you found this useful either way.