Lighting Expert: Simon Ellingworth

Last year Simon Ellingworth was a finalist in the International iPhone Photography Awards, Mobile Photography Awards & Professional Photographer of the Year, last year he was runner up in Professional Photographer of the Year and Sony World Photography Awards. [selected from 121,000 images from 171 countries]

Simon is founder of photography education blog based upon the premise ‘buying a better camera won’t make you a better photographer’ aimed at smart phone, tablet, GoPro and traditional photographers called Lightism. His easy to follow tutorials have been published by some of the biggest blogs in the world.

The Hideout - iPhone Photography Awards 2007 Develop Your Photography the Easy Way Develop Your Photography the Easy Way Develop Your Photography the Easy Way Lightism is gaining a huge global following and contacts 10 free lessons and loads of super simplified photography articles even your Dad would understand.



I LOVE ringlights, but I’m more of a ringlight subversive. Sure I like their clean shadowless studio look, but it’s just not me

Once you take the ring flash off camera and start to think of it as a softbox or fill light, a new world opens up to you. You can light just part of the picture, give the main element that little kick of white fizzy light that shows you’ve taken control of your picture and used light to punctuate it.


Righlight Tutorial - Get Edgy Street Shots


Most rightlights never make it into the outside world, which is a shame because if you blend them with ambient daylight you can give your pictures a real punchy look.

The shot above was taken in Soho, London at a street party during a the Royal Wedding.  Marta and her fellow London based band members where having a beer and larking around in the street…yes, dressed exactly like that!

I looked around and saw a black roller shutter over a shop down the street and thought there’s my background. So I approached them camera out ringflash in hand (quite a talking point which set me apart from other photographers wandering about) and asked if I could photograph them.

This is shot in aperture priority with the camera dealing with the ambient light, ringlight handheld high as I could reach pointing down at the model. I wanted a sort of dark eyed mermaid look if that makes any sense?

Again, the flash is been triggered by a cheap eBay Yongnuo wireless trigger and the flash is in manual mode and set at 1/3 of full power. I took a test shot and the adjusted the flashes power to get the effect I was after.

Here’s another good example of using your ringlight outside.

Take Your Ring light Outside for interesting Portraits by Simon

This was shot on a very bright sunny day, but in the shadows a little way in front of a dark background.
I actually shot though the ringflash for a change, but the setup remained the same.


Simon All Images Copyright Simon Ellingworth

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