Shooting Dramatic Portraits

with Simple Studio Setup




  • Learn the basics of studio lighting and build your a portable studio anywhere.

  • Lighting equipment provided. You just need to bring your cameras and lenses (50mm, 85mm or 24-70mm).

  • Creating soft vs hard light.

  • Build the Three-point Light System step by step:

    • The key light​

    • The fill light

    • Separating the subject from the background with a background or hair light

  • Create major light patterns and make subjects with different face features look good:

    • Butterfly or Paramount​ Lighting

    • Loop Lighting

    • Rembrandt Lighting

    • Split Lighting

    • Rim Lighting

    • Short or Broad Lighting

  • Learn to create both high-key & low-key portraitures.

  • Create dramatic portraits with simple studio setup.

  • Understand the effect of size of softboxes on the quality of light

  • Learn to edit your work in Lightroom (the basics) and Photoshop (the details). You can sign up for the Photoshop Bootcamp I & II to learn the editing basics before this workshop. Please bring your laptop computers that have Lightroom Classic and Photoshop installed.

  • The model's outfits will be provided by Photosprouts.

  • Please note that there will be no classroom session in this workshop, all the knowledge that we share is through practical demonstrations.

  • Easy-to-follow Lighting Workbook provided.

  • For understanding the science of light, please sign up for Portrait Lighting & Posing I Workshop(prerequisite).

  • Small class size (maximum 6 attendees).

Attendees are expected to bring their own cameras and lenses.

Strobes, triggers, modifiers and color gel provided


1. BEGINNER 101 & 102 & 103 OR ability to use the manual mode of your camera proficiently.

2. Portrait Lighting & Posing Workshop I

Workshop Date

March 8th, 2020 (Sunday)



Quick Facts

Tuition fee: $450

Workshop time:


Venue: 535 Mission Street, San Francisco

What will you learn?

An ordinary picture

Creating your own Magic Hour

1a. Studio Lighting Essentials

  • Mounting a strobe or a flash to the softbox

  • Accessories that you need to buy for building a home studio, and their costs

  • Building the three-point light system step by step

  • Positioning the modifiers

  • Seeing light by studying the catchlights

  • "Feathering" the light to make it even softer

  • Creating artistic, low-key portraitures

1b. Creating different light patterns

  • Butterfly (Paramount) and Clamshell

  • Loop

  • Split

  • Rambrant 

  • Split

  • Rim

(can you identify which photo corresponds to which light pattern?)

2. Understanding the effects of adding a "grid" to the softbox

  • Dramatic portrait with one-light setup

  • With and without a grid

With grid

Without grid


The sharp contrast in light makes the photo look good in black & white 

3. High Key Photos

  • Creating your own window light 

  • Understanding the difference between small, medium and large softboxes in terms of light quality

  • Using any resources available in your house as a modifier if you don't own a large softbox. What is the softbox that has been used in the below photo? The answer is the discount code to this class (big hunt: check out your bathroom)

4. "Gelling" your light

  • Adding colors to your light

  • Out-of-the-box thinking

5. Editing your work in Lightroom and Photoshop

  • Lightroom: Basic retouching

  • Photoshop: Refining the details, including smoothening the skin

What do attendees say about us?

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535 Mission Street, 14 Fl, San Francisco CA 94105 USA  | hello@photosprouts.com | T: 510 410 4121