Two-Light Male Portrait

Master male portraiture as Karl Taylor switches from photographer to subject.

This portrait photography class sees Karl take the hot seat as he works with broncolor’s Urs Recher on a two-light setup demonstration.

Together, the pair demonstrate a number of creative yet simple two-light setups suitable for a variety of styles – from dramatic fashion images to flattering beauty shots.

Urs explains the simple modifications he’s made to the key light and why the resulting effect is effective for a variety of subjects. He and Karl then go on to demonstrate how this setup is ideal when you’re working in a small studio space.

In this class:

  • Studio Lighting: How to set up multiple studio lights
  • Two light setup for portrait photography
  • Simple & affordable modifications for softboxes
  • How to create contoured light for flattering portraits
  • How to photograph in a small studio

Questions? Please post them in the comments section below.


  1. Enjoyed session and great to see what can be done with minimal gear and space. Noticed in 2nd shoot Evie held a black board as well as white. Was this to block possible lens flare.? Thanks.

      1. I noted the black board as well. It is at 6.50 or thereabouts, in the second ‘session’. There is some extra flare caused by having the ‘ceiling’ white board brought in to make the ‘small studio’ space? Thank you

        1. Hi Simon, yes the board Evie is holding (the black one) is a flare blocker and the white one of course is a shadow fill.

  2. Excellent! Which Has camera/lens was he using? Also, I know you use Phocus, but do you then finish in Adobe or something else?

    1. Hi Doug, he is using a Canon 5dmk3 with an 85mm 1.2L portrait lens. We were using Lightroom for these as Canon cameras don’t work in Phocus.

  3. Good tips you use some boards and a reflector. I will do some self-portraits next 2 weeks. Have some problems with an over 10-year-old camera but will use backup if the focus does not work. Thank you for sharing your expertise.

  4. This was a very helpful video to show how one could shoot not just acceptable but excellent headshots with a minimum amount of space and lighting. Karl is a handsome man!

  5. I really like this setup, simple and repeatable. My own preference would be a bit punchier light for male portraits. I assume removing front diffusion panel from the softbox would add more contrast (assuming the inner walls of the softbox are silver. As always, great lesson, and enjoyable to watch. Thanks Karl.

  6. How good it is to be able to see the content with subtitles in Spanish. That being the case, I think I will be subscribed to the web for a lifetime. Excellent work!

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