Gary Fong Lightsphere

I’ve known about Gary Fong’s light modifiers for years, I’ve seen them all over the place. In fact, I’m sure that most photographers must either have one, or like me at least know about them. However it wasn’t until a couple of weeks ago when I picked up the Gary Fong Pro Lightsphere Kit that I actually used one. Oh yes, and while my wallet was open getting the Lightsphere Kit, I dug a little deeper and also bought the Pocket Wizard Mini TT1 and Flex TT5 radio transmitters and receivers. I had heard about their capability of using higher shutter speeds that go far beyond the standard X-Sync speeds. Both of the these images were shot at 1/1000 second using a flash, which I think is pretty amazing, considering that the highest I could possibly go without the PW is 1/250. In fact, with the HyperSync feature I can actually go all the way up to 1/8000.

Now while the most common use of the Lightsphere is indoors where it is used to create soft diffused light, my intention was to use it as a fill light outdoors. The effect I wanted to achieve using my Canon 580 EXII flash and the Lightsphere was a softened effect rather than the harsh/contast light that I would get from just using the direct flash. I placed the dome (curved side outwards) on the top of the Lightsphere and directed it straight at Pascale. (PHOTO #1)

Lightsphere with Dome/Pocket Wizard Flex TT5 and Pascale


It worked perfectly,  filling in the shadows, creating a soft diffusion that evened out the contrasty light of mid afternoon. As we were shooting, the sky quickly changed from wall-to-wall clear to thick white puffy clouds. As the clouds passed in front of the sun they created a silhouette on the land below, basically putting the entire scene in shade. Using the same exposure settings in this “shade” now created a very dramatic image, one that almost looks like the actual scene is a backdrop (PHOTO #2)

Flash with Lightsphere is now the main light, as entire scene is in shade


While this is not a review of the Lightsphere or the Pocket Wizards, I have to say that after having used them on a couple of shoots these are going to be really useful tools to add to my camera bag.



3 Responses to “Gary Fong Lightsphere”

  1. Norman Campbell says:

    Trust you to think outside of the box. While everyone else uses the Lightshperes shooting weddings inside, here you are shooting models outside. Great idea and wonderful image….and a gorgeous model!!!!!! Please invite me to your next photo shoot :-)

  2. Joshua Lee says:

    Great post Garry! Your blog never disappoints and always fuels my desire to go out and work to improve my images. Thanks for the equipment advice, there’s always more room in my camera bag!

  3. Adam says:

    Thanks for the behind the scenes and equipment suggestions. It really gives me inspiration to use my flashes more than I do now.