Five Lighting Patterns That Every Photographer Should Know

How many of the primary lighting patterns can you execute well? Here is an explanation of five of the most common lighting techniques used in photography.

Your ability to use light is the most critical factor in capturing a quality photo. And even though this statement has always been true and probably always will be, I feel that lighting is a topic that photographers are increasingly overlooking. Whether you are using an off-camera flash or natural light, having a better understanding of lighting patterns will make a vast difference in your final product.

In this video, Jeff Rojas shares a simple explanation of five of the most basic lighting patterns. The five patterns covered in this video are flat, butterfly, Rembrandt, split, and loop lighting. The great thing about this video is that Rojas not only shares with you how to perform each technique, but he also includes several examples of each style and talks about the positive and negative of each one. For example, do you want to get more depth from your subject’s cheekbones or jawline? Rojas tells you how to adjust the light to capture these features better.

Considering how light affects your subject and learning to control it are the types of things that you need to think about as you grow in your craft and improve as a photographer. To see excellent demonstrations of these five lighting patterns, take a look at the video above.

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4 Comments

thomas Palmer's picture

I've seen this post 45 times this past year, just not the same video

Jeff McCollough's picture

Awesome. Jeff is awesome. Not me, the other Jeff hahaha.

Jonathon Rusnak's picture

The five lighting patterns photographers should forget.

Arun Hegden's picture

Thanks for the share. Simple and neat explanation.