Free Trial

Safari Books Online is a digital library providing on-demand subscription access to thousands of learning resources.

Share this Page URL

Chapter Two. Using Your Studio Like a Pr... > Using Grid Spots - Pg. 39

Using Your Studio Like a Pro Using Grid Spots If you took your softbox off your strobe, the light from the flash bulb would pretty much just go everywhere. That's one of the reasons we use softboxes in the first place-- to help us put the light where we want it and greatly soften it, of course, but softboxes are, by nature, soft. That's where grid spots come in. These attach right over your strobe's reflector (the kind I use actually snap right into the reflector), and they have a metal honeycomb pattern that gives you a narrow, focused beam for very dramatic effects (the light will be hard-edged, because there's no softbox--it's a bare bulb with a metal reflector and a grid spot). Right now, you see these grid spots used big time as back- edge lights in portraits (in fact, I'm not sure you can find a magazine editorial-style cover shot in the past year that doesn't use at least one, if not two, rear grid spots, putting a white highlight on either side of the subject). These come in different degrees (like a 10° grid, a 20°, and so on), and the lower the number, the tighter the beam (I usually use a 20° or 30° grid). There's not much to using them. You just snap them into place and that's it--your beam is greatly narrowed. Put one on either side of your subject, aim them at the sides of their face, then use a strobe up front to put some fill light into their face, and--voilá--you've got the look. Well, there is a little more to it--make sure you see the last chapter of the book for more on this look--but it all starts with a grid spot. [ 39 ]