A striking portrait of a Wrestler

Last week I photographed a great entertainer, a professional Wrestler, Sam Udell. I was thinking of adding my edgy mood, dark image light to his performance, but I did not know how much fun it would be.

Not only did I laugh with him, I was challenged by my own lighting to create him a portrait that would be striking and make it work in the way I had it in my mind.

Four lights were used in his portrait. Four speed lights. 2 lights with blue gels were used from the back, 5 feet away from each side, pointing to him. Both backlights were used in 1/4 of the power with the zoom heads at 24mm, trying to get the blue light to reach the body as well as the head and shoulders.

The feet were too dark, so another speed light was used on the ground to illuminate the shoes and part of his legs. This front light on the ground was set to 1/8 power. This is the Neewer 560 flash, where I have no control of the zoom head. A CTO gel was used to warm this flash. 

The main light was the Yongnuo 568 ex ii with a CTO gel as well, and a grid, being handheld by my assistant to raise the light just above him to create the main light the way I want it. Main light was set to 1/4 power, zoom head at 24mm.

We were together for almost one hour, until I had the picture I wanted. A lot of light gets lost in a big room and technically it is much easier to make this kind of picture with more powerful lights, but I wanted the power to be more mobile and have no cords on my way. It was a very fun photo shoot, the dramatic kind, my kind. 

If you have not seen the other images, you can check them in the portfolio. My favorite was this one: