Do you want to add a touch of color on your portraits? You can create a really cool effect with the help of a simple trick using color gels. If you haven’t worked with them before, knowing what they can do will allow you to confidently play around with moods through colors. If you already have some strobe lights and flashes, you’re already halfway there. Color gels are simply these thin plastic sheets in different colors that you can attach to your light source and flashes to change their color. How exactly do you use them in your shoot? The free tutorial below by PHLEARN will show you how.
PHLEARN founder Aaron Nace gives us a preview of a neon-themed photo shoot he did to demonstrate the effect these color gels can create for your portraits. For his setup, he used teal and magenta color gels on two Einstein flashes with Softboxes to give a fun and conceptual feel to his portraits. In some of the photos he shared, we see the two colors at work to light different spots on the model. It’s a great way to play with color combinations without worrying about creating a drastic effect such as with duochromes (if that’s too much for your or not the look you’re going for). In some shots, we see how working with one color gel creates a slightly monochrome look.
One of the few things we can maybe add from this is to make sure that the colors you choose complement each other (like teal and magenta in this example). This also worked great because they styled their model with white clothing and a light pink wig. So remember to keep the styling light or pastel-hued to make sure the colors really stand out.
Want to see the full tutorial? Head to the PHLEARN website to sign-up and purchase their Photo Editing 201 lessons.
Screenshot taken from the video