One of my last shoots in NYC was done right in my neighborhood, West Harlem, with life fitness coach and prolific blogger Jolita Brilliant. I wanted to shoot some running as a followup to the work I did while out in Wyoming, which included these sweeping natural landscapes with a tiny runner in them.

A grittier, city-centric shoot came to be, planned around a highway overpass that had minimal traffic underneath, and was well away from areas that are more guarded by overzealous mall cop types.

I went easy on the modifiers, since we were walking to the shoot location. In fact, we ended up walking around 4 or 5 miles back and forth, playing with some different backdrops and lighting that the area had. Our warm up shots against this building were done with a fair amount of natural light creeping in from the river, less than 20 yards away. The metal siding on the building was fun to bounce light around on, and let me sneak a strobe in there while still looking surprisingly natural.

The final list of modifiers was the magnum reflector shown above and...nothing. The bare bulb continues to be a versatile light, especially in mimicking, adding to, or balancing sunlight. And shooting around 5 in the afternoon, we had a lot of sunlight from the west side of the city, right on the river.

We even squeezed in some no-light shots as the sun went down, with some cool shadows coming through the arches of this ironwork overpass. I've finally come to terms with natural light, and while I'll still go to Profoto right off the bat, sometimes you can do a lot with a little, or nothing at all. 

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