Getting ugly catchlights when using Octabox

2 years 1 month ago #576827 by Randall McNabb
I've seen some photographers get great looking catchlights in the eyes of their subject by using a Octabox.  Well I picked up one, however my catchlights just look like small dots.  I have moved my light around, positioned it higher and lower and always just get a pin dots in my models eyes.  

What am I doing wrong?


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2 years 1 month ago #576843 by J Photo Man
How far is your light from your model?  If you have a small dot showing up, you have your light positioned to far away.  Move it much closer and try again.


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2 years 1 month ago #576868 by effron
Yes, lights "too" far from subject.

Why so serious?
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2 years 1 month ago #576917 by garyrhook
And.... how big is the Octabox? 60"? Bigger is better.


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2 years 1 month ago #576932 by albinpix
Getting close is going to be the quickest and most effective way of fixing this issue. If you have access to a bigger octabox, use it, but I think you'll see a huge difference with positioning your subject close to the light.


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2 years 1 month ago #576939 by Tony Imaging
Well all is correct and on the money here.   Get your light closer and go big.


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2 years 1 month ago #577033 by MM Images
I had the same experience first time experimenting with catch lights.  Just move your lights closer and you'll be good.  


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2 years 1 month ago #577099 by Carry
Which Octabox are you using?


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2 years 1 month ago #577125 by G Vernon
The larger the source, the softer it is. It all depends on what you will be shooting that dictates how large you want your source to be. As a general rule the distance from subject shouldn´t be any greater than the diameter of the Octa or Beauty dish for example on a head and shoulder shot it´ll usually just be fractionally outside of the frame. A good size would be 60 inches + for a 3/4 / full length shot. Another way to achieve large catch lights is to stand directly in front of a larger diameter Octabank, the light will still wrap around the subject, but at close range for head and shoulders it´ll produce nicely sculptured almost translucent catch-lights.


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2 years 1 month ago #577571 by Vahrenkamp

GJ-Vernon wrote: The larger the source, the softer it is. It all depends on what you will be shooting that dictates how large you want your source to be. As a general rule the distance from subject shouldn´t be any greater than the diameter of the Octa or Beauty dish for example on a head and shoulder shot it´ll usually just be fractionally outside of the frame. A good size would be 60 inches + for a 3/4 / full length shot. Another way to achieve large catch lights is to stand directly in front of a larger diameter Octabank, the light will still wrap around the subject, but at close range for head and shoulders it´ll produce nicely sculptured almost translucent catch-lights.



I've seen some of your portraits, very catchy work.  Good post.  +1


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2 years 1 month ago #577938 by Stacy Kaufman
I had the same problem and then read that you need to bring your light about 4'-5' from your subject and it worked very well for me.  I have a 32" box.  


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2 years 1 month ago #578753 by Gord-O
Agree with rest - get it closer.  I use a 36" inch collapsible beauty dish with deflectors remove or an Ocotbox as well,  and both work as long as I'm within that 4-5 ft. range like the rest have mentioned..  


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