Strobe Light In Photography: Uses & Benefits

Updated on November 9, 2022 in Photography by

Strobe Light In Photography: Uses & Benefits

Let us all agree that flash isn’t the most powerful source of light when it comes to photography light. We sometimes need more direct lights.

And the one that fits this need is the Strobe light in photography.

Strobe lights in photography are the type of photography lights that professionals use. A light that adds high-intensity of light in their photos.

In this article, you’ll learn about

What Is A Strobe Light?

What Is A Strobe Light?

A strobe light in photography is a type of photography lighting that syncs with your camera and emits a short burst of lighting when you press the shutter button. It works as an external, much more powerful flash than a regular flashgun.

The light is also known as the monolight and can have a full power output of anywhere between 100 watts to 1000 watts. The higher the power you choose, the longer the distance will the light be able to cover.

Why not use flash?

Because of the power and inaccessibility to control it. Normally, a lens only has 60 to 100 watts of power. As a photographer, this might not be enough for various scenarios.

For example, if you want to shoot against the light, your flash will not be able to emit light strong enough to capture it, and hence the subject will look dark. But if you are using a strobe light in photography, you’ll be able to use its high power to balance the light from the back and capture the subject well.

In scenes where the sun is in the background, and the subject is still looking bright and clear, a strong source of light is used during that time. Possibly a strobe light.

Benefits Of Strobe Light

Higher Light Power

Strobe lights in photography have very high light power. Even if you are using it against the sun, you can capture some amazing shots with its help. You can also vary the power or use diffusers to change your light as per the scene you want.

Flash Duration

The flash duration of the strobe light is shorter. That means light emits very quickly from the source and reaches the subject on time. This allows you to use strobe light in photography during high shutter speeds.

Modeling Light

Many strobe lights also have a feature to let you see where the flash will fall on your subject. This reduces the test and trial time as you can see the scene before you start shooting and complete your setup faster.

Faster Recycling

Faster recycling in photography means how quickly the light can recharge and emit the same power of light again. Any light needs to have faster recycling as it allows you to capture many shots quickly without wasting your productive time waiting for the lights to recharge.

Consistency Of Temperature

The shift in the temperature of the light means the change in the color of light that the source emits. Strobe lights are resistant to changes in temperature hence ensuring that the color of photos doesn’t get affected due to lights.

How To Use Strobe Light In Photography?

Now that we know the benefits of using strobe light in photography let us learn how to use it.

But before that, ensure your camera and your lights are in sync. To ensure that first. You can use a sync cable, built-in electronic slave, or radio slaves (triggers to sync your lights).

Test your camera and light to ensure they are synced, and get started.

1. Use Modeling Light

When getting started, I’ll recommend you use modeling light to get a good previous on how the flash will affect your photography. This will give you a decent idea of the lighting composition and allow you to create the best lighting setup for your photography.

2. Take some test shots

No lighting setup can be ready without taking some sample shots. After all, who wants to struggle with the lighting when you are in the creative mode to capture the poses. While modeling light would have given a good idea of how the light will affect you, taking a sample shot takes you one step closer to a perfect image.

3. Placement of light

Now there are many ways you can place strobe light in photography. The most common one is from the top in the front of the model. Other at the 40-45 degree angle from the model. Both are common lighting composition techniques and can help you capture flattering images.

But if you want something to make your photo stand out, you can use strobe light as background light. Place it slightly below the head, facing toward the back of the model, and this will help you capture good silhouette photos.

In our recent article, we shared one of the most popular and versatile three-point lighting setups for beginners that you use for model photography, product photography and more.

4. Setting up the intensity

The intensity of strobe light in photography is a huge factor that decides how our photos will turn out.

For example, when you are shooting indoors, the intensity of the light will be less as there are fewer lights. You must also be using light modifiers or reflectors to avoid direct lighting.

But when you are shooting outdoors, choosing the intensity and mode of the camera will be harder. You have to counter the lights from the sun, and hence the intensity of the lights will be high.

Also, the way to place your light against the sunlight, the position of the morning, and the model’s pose will all need experiments and shots to find the best fit.

Bonus Read

Getting started with strobe light in photography can take time to learn. But just like any other photography equipment, once you get the hang of it, there is no looking back.

Be it wedding photography, fashion photography, or even product photography. Your process and methods of using strobe light in photography will help you advance your career and skills.

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