One-Light Challenge Product Photoshoot

In this live show, Karl demonstrates how it’s possible to achieve a high-end product shoot using only one light!

Proving it’s not about how much equipment you have but rather how you use the equipment you do have, Karl shows the step-by-step process of photographing lipsticks, making a one-light setup look like a three-light setup.

Throughout the show Karl covers useful techniques for photographing cosmetic products, such as creating gradient lighting, using reflectors and flags, controlling your background light and how to use long exposures for product photography.

This is a fascinating live show that will teach any photographer, whether you have one light or five, valuable skills you can apply in your photography.

In this class you will learn:

  • Product photography tips
  • Product photography with one light
  • Creating gradient lighting
  • How to use reflectors and flags for product photography
  • Controlling background lights using the inverse square law and direction of light
  • Long exposures for product photography

For more product photography classes, make sure to take a look at our product photography section.

If you have any questions about this show, please use the comments section below.


  1. GregK

    Hi Karl. Been watching the Black on Black photo shoot and the One Light Cosmetic shot. My question is instead of using Lee 216 Diffusion Material or a acrylic sheet would a Silk work? As of now my biggest soft box is 31X47. As always your classes are very informative and are making me think outside of the box.

    1. Hi Greg, unfortunately it depends on the silk. Generally speaking if it’s a silk designed for diffusion then yes but if the material is not good then it creates a starburst pattern to the light which is then visible in the gloss reflection on products.

  2. Yup, best teacher ever. Whenever I shoot with my flashes I think what would Karl say about the position of the lighting 🤣🙏

  3. Hi Karl. Great stuff. Thanks for all the tips and tricks 🙂
    I have a question for you.
    Is it possible to do a double exposure shoot instead of a long exposure when we are changing the light source from one position to the other?


    1. Hi Teresa, yes absolutely if your camera has that function. Mine doesn’t. Back in the days of film we used to just put the lens cap back on the lens and then take it off again when we were ready to take the next shot!

  4. hi, I would like to know why by hiding or covering the lens while the shutter was processing and your assistant was changing the light position on the background didn’t effect the picture by turning it blackout since you covered the lens? thanks

  5. hi, please I would like to know the idea about hiding or covering the lens while the shutter was processing and till your assistant was changing the light position on the background? that’s was a lovely trick ..thanks

Leave a Comment