Black (& White) Friday: Split Lighting

My second post in three weeks featuring a dramatically lit portrait. Perhaps I’m on to something here? Probably not. If you missed it, you can see my low-key self portrait from two weeks agoย here.

Here is an image I took during a photo shoot featuring the split lighting technique. It’s often most effective when your subject is a man with well defined features, and not often recommended to do with ladies… unless of course your model has wonderful skin and huge beautiful eyes like Sara has here.

This post is also serving double duty this week as my submission for the Weekly Photo Challenge because of its extreme contrast.




  1. That was a good photo and interesting narrative. I might learn something here. lol Nice work as usual!!

    1. That’s a total lie. If you didn’t know anything about lighting, your images wouldn’t be anywhere near as amazing as they are.

      It’s actually pretty simple, if you keep it simple and experiment. You just take your flash off the camera and point it at your subject in different positions. Set the flash on manual mode and half power. Set your camera shutter speed to 1/125th, ISO at it’s lowest settling, and aperture at f/5.6 as a starting point and adjust from there. The only things to note are that shutter speed controls your ambient light, and aperture controls your flash power… unless you want to change the power directly on the flash.

      The hardest part is asking someone to model for you ๐Ÿ™‚

      1. I can’t take my flash off the camera, lol. I don’t own a separate flash. I notice natural light but i can’t create light…unless with lamps. lol

      1. Good tip. I start my Photography class next week so I’m excited about learning all the different techniques. Do you mind me asking what kind of camera you use or could you recommend a good camera?

      2. I’m really excited for you and can’t wait to hear about what you learn.

        As far as cameras go, they’re somewhat irrelevant unless you have specific requirements such as needing really good low light capabilities because you shoot concerts, or really high megapixels because you need lots and lots of detail for a special type of portrait photography.

        I would first decide on how much you’d like to spend, and then work from there. The camera body itself doesn’t matter as much as the lenses. I use a Nikon D5100 at the moment, but began my blog with a Sony NEX f3… which was Sony’s most basic mirrorless camera a couple years ago.

        If you’d like to have the option of changing lenses, then go.with a mirrorless or DSLR body. If you don’t want to think about lenses, then get a point and shoot, or something like the Fuji X100. It has a fixed length lens (I think 35mm) and is one of the best little cameras out there. A LOT of pro photographers sing its praise. Google Valery Jardin and Zack Arias and see what they have to say about the Fuji.

        If you like, email me and I can give you some more info that’s too much for the comment space

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