Low Key lighting is more than just taking a picture of something against a black background. In this excellent video tutorial for Adorama TV, photographer Gavin Hoey explains how to shoot a low-key portrait.

Step-by-step he takes you through the technique of correctly exposing an image that relies on darker tones to create moody, low-key portraiture.

If you shoot in a small home or portable studio, low key lighting is one of the best lighting styles to learn.

In this video Gavin Hoey starts you off with several techniques and ideas for shooting your first low-key portrait.

To shoot the images in this video, Gavin used:

  • Olympus OMD E-M5 Mark II
  • Olympus Zuiko Digital ED 12-40mm f/2.8 Pro
  • Black rapid RS-7 Strap
  • Sekonic L-308S Flashmate
  • MagMod MagGrip
  • MagMod Snoot
  • Westcott 32” Rapidbox Duo
  • Linco 8’ Light Stand
  • Flashpoint Zoom Li-on Manual On-Camera Flash

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