Joe on the old sofa: childrens photography in Tokyo
© 2012 Alfie Goodrich. All rights reserved.

A bit of strobist fun with my son, Joe

Joe finished his basketball practice this evening and came around the corner from our house for 30mins, to help daddy try out some new grids and a snoot.

This old sofa has been sitting in the street for two weeks now and hasn't moved, so it was time to get a cool shot of the boy on it.

It was cold out but I tried to be as quick as I could. Tried a few setups. One like this but with strobes behind the sofa looked good but this one totally worked. I like the depth of the shadows without the sofa being backlit.


Nikon D700
Pentax Super Takumar 35mm f/3.5 lens adapted to the Nikon F mount
Yongnuo 560 strobe at camera right, mounted on a speedlight bracket and pushed through a Bowens S-Mount reflector dish with 50 degree grid.


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  1. Oh, right ON!!  So freaking cool, +Alfie Goodrich !  I love how your images always make me weak in the knees.

  2. Cleanest way I can think of how to do that +Kelli Seeger Kim 🙂

  3. Fantastic. Splash of yellow gives a feeling of hope in the midst of gray.

  4. Asked Joe specifically to wear this yellow hoodie, +Darla Hueske. Seemed like the perfect accent. Thanks. Glad you like it.

  5. My youngest, Charlie, is getting his shot taken on this sofa tomorrow… in his Santa costume 🙂

  6. Nice with the light from the right . Like the yellow to the otherwise muted colourscheme.

  7. Think I'm gonna shoot a whole bunch of my friends on this sofa…

  8. Liked the idea with the yellow hoodie. – but as well: without the backlit reminds me of the shadows in these ooold silent expressionists films…(from urban alienation…to… the cabinet of dr. caligary 😉

  9. I like the way you managed to light up his face perfectly complete with a triangle on his cheek!  Before long I am worried you will be carrying bath tubs into the middle of large fields and shooting for Cialis!

  10. Don't give me ideas +Shane Smith 🙂 the gridded light is great for this sort of thing. The 'Rembrandt' type thing going on, with the triangle of light, is pretty easy: 45degees out from the subject, pointing down at 45degrees, is a basic rule of thumb.

  11. And yes, +Ihab Nagy, it's great to have a son. Weather here is horrible today but ASAP going to get my other son on the sofa as well. 🙂

  12. That is beautifully lit. If you can get your other son out it this weather today, you have some amazing talents in other areas as well.

  13. Probably no chance on that front now +David Hufford but if it clears up later, I'll drag him out 🙂

  14. And thanks about the lighting, +David Hufford. One light. You can do a lot with one light, modified the right way. The grid really makes a lot of difference here. It's not getting light on stuff that's hard, it's keeping it off stuff 🙂 always encourage the people I teach to set up one light at a time. Only way to go: build, don't set up loads of lights just cos you have them.

  15. That's interesting to know +Alfie Goodrich  'cause one light is about all I'd want to carry for most things I shoot nowadays..

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