“Chiaroscuro,” light and dark. The light usually comes at some expense (I used one Elinchrom strobe), the dark is very cheap.
For a simple portrait I wanted a simple lighting scheme: one black cloth backdrop, about 1m behind Vincenzo, and one light, at my right, quite close to him, but not too close
The most difficult part, the make-or-break aspect of the portrait, was the exact placement of the light: I wanted Vincenzo’s face lit better and more than his shoulder, so I moved the strobe until I was pleased. I made sure that the strobe was close (in order to enhance the chiaroscuro effect) to his face but not too much to his shoulder, where the light mostly arrived “feathered”, that is from the transtion light/dark.
I took two portraits because I wanted a soft one and a harder one. I used, respectively, a gridded softbox and a gridded beauty-dish.
On my left, there was a white wall, at about 2m, that provided a really minimal fill for the shadows.