9 Photography Lighting Hacks to Level Up Your Portraits

Feeling the need to get creative with your portraits? Try these quick lighting hacks to level up your portrait game!

Last time we shared some tips from JT of Run N Gun, he showed us how to get pro-looking dramatic portraits using one light source. In a recent video, he shares a bunch of quick and easy lighting hacks for shooting portraits, using everyday items you can find in your home or office, or in grocery stores and craft supply shops!

The video below is a perfect resource for those who want to get crafty with their portrait practice. Need some ‘out of the box’ approaches without breaking the bank? Play with your light source. If you only have one light and you want to spice it up, there are plenty of affordable and surprising ways to do it. Experimenting with light is one of the simple yet effective ways to get extra creative with photography, especially with portraiture. So, if you have 90 seconds to spare, watch the video below and take note of JT’s photography lighting hacks!

We bet it didn’t cross your mind to use most of the items mentioned above for your portrait shoots. Who would have thought that mouthwash and colored post-it notes can be used to produce diffused colored lights for neon effects? Likewise, a clear sandwich bag filled with water or a white plastic bag can easily diffuse a hard light source and transform it into flattering soft light. Paper towel cores can be used to direct light towards a specific part on your model’s face. Likewise, placemats with punched patterns, noodle strainers, and even fake fur also work great for creating textured shadows that enhance the mood of your portraits.

If you missed it last time, JT also shared a hack for creating colored light using your phone or tablet!

Don’t forget to visit and subscribe to the Run N Gun YouTube channel for more photography tips, tricks, and hacks from JT!