Product Spotlight: OctoDome White Soft Box

4 N6 A1072

Equipment:

This lesson focuses on several ways to use the new line of Photoflex OctoDome White soft boxes. The 8-sided shape of these boxes creates broad, wrap-around light that's perfect for portraiture as well as commercial photography, weddings, fashion, and more.

Headshots

The new OctoDome White soft boxes are great for shooting in-studio as well as on-location and are excellent lighting for headshots. The soft and diffused light is flattering for all ages and skin tones and the broad spread of light allows your subject freedom of movement when posing.

In the set-up shot below, you can see that the OctoDome White: Extra Small is a small and lightweight modifier that is easy to transport and use in small spaces. In this case, the box was placed directly in front of the subject at a 45-degree angle to create the classic "butterfly lighting" effect. The white side of a 32" 9-in-1 MultiDisc Reflector was placed directly in front of the subject using a LiteDisc Holder to bounce more light into the eyes and soften the shadows beneath the chin.


As you can see from the result shots below, the light is soft and flattering with definition beneath the nose, chin and brows. The broad light of the OctoDome White also lit the white backdrop toa soft grey so no second light was needed.

One of the best qualities of the OctoDome White is the wide spread of the light. In these examples, the subject was able to turn from side to side without the key light needing to be moved. Shadows are ultra flattering with soft and feathering edges.



To create an even softer lighting look, the OctoDome White: Extra Small was switched out with the larger 3-foot OctoDome White: Small. The larger box creates a broader light spread resulting in softer shadows with much more feathering. There is still definition under the nose, chin and brow but the overall look is softer in general.



Group Portraits

Another great use for the OctoDome White soft boxes is to capture group portraits. The 8-sided shape with large light spread is perfect for lighting families, corporate portraits, wedding parties, etc. Using a broad modifier like the Photoflex OctoDome ensures that all subjects in the group are lit evenly.

For a large family, both the OctoDome White: Medium (5') and OctoDome White: Large (7') are great choices. In the setup shot below, you can see the OctoDome White: Medium set up to capture a family portrait in open shade. With the sun behind the subjects, the OctoDome became the main light source with the ambient light used as fill (and to light the background).


As you can see in the behind-the-scenes image, open shade light can be flat and on the cold end of the Kelvin scale. Adding the OctoDome White: Medium as a key light warmed up skin tones and added enough light to balance with the natural ambient light, resulting in more detail and a better over all exposure.

The OctoDome was placed slightly to camera left, creating subtle shadows on the side of each's subject's face for a more dynamic portrait. Placing the light directly in front would have been a flatter look. The result images below were captured at f5.0 with a shutter speed of 1/125 at ISO 400. The light output was set to 5.6 which resulted in a slight overexposure to pop the subject's out from the background and brighten skin tones. The OctoDome White: Medium used as a key light in this case ensures that each subject is evenly lit with a sparkling catch light in the eyes.





For portraits of smaller groups, such as children, the smaller OctoDome White: Small is an excellent choice. In the case of this family, the children were posed together in a gazebo on the property. The gazebo was mostly in shade with a few patches of sunlight coming through.


The OctoDome White: Small output was balanced with the natural ambient light to give the look of a portrait lit only with available light. Because the OctoDome White: Small has such broad and soft light, the only giveaway that additional light was used are the catch lights in each subject's eyes. The result images were captured at f4.5 with a shutter speed of 1/125 at ISO 400.



Indoor Portraits

In winter months it can be challenging to shoot outside and in this case the OctoDome White line of soft boxes can really save the day.

The wide design of the OctoDome is perfect to use indoors as a sole key light. In the setup image below, the subjects were posed in front of a fireplace with bright windows to camera right. The OctoDome White: Medium was placed to camera right with the window light acting as fill.


The result images below were captured at f5.6 with a shutter speed of 1/125 at ISO 400.



The new OctoDome White soft boxes are an excellent choice for portrait photographers and can also be used to photograph products, food, weddings, fashion, glamour and much more. Stay tuned to the Photoflex Lighting School for more lessons using these versatile modifiers.