Lighting #6 Film noir style lighting

The film noir lighting style is defined by high contrast highly directional lighting and the look is completed by rendering the images in B&W. Its a style that I love using and if done well can help you achieve really dramatic striking images.

It can be quite a tricky look to get right simply because the lighting is so directional and focused - you'll typically have a relatively small hotspot which will quickly fall off into shadow. Of course you can move the key light away from the model to gain a wider hotspot, but you'll also find as you move the light further away you'll also loose drama in the shot. I tend to simply ask the model to stay in one small area and keep an eye on where that hotspot is landing - Adjusting the light as needed.

I decided to use this lighting style for an erotic 'secretary' themed shoot I had recently and I think it worked pretty well. I  used an Elinchrom D-lite 2it with a grid spot attached as the key light. This was placed on a boom stand directly above the model and facing pretty much strait down. I also used an SB28 flash gun with a home made grid spot on in a few of the shots to pick out any details that where missed by the D-lite.

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