Monday, March 10, 2008

Just Add A Little Garlic, Garlic Light That Is

That’s what my good buddy, Don Blair, used to call it - garlic light -just a little bit of light to spice up the image. Every time I give a seminar or workshop, I’m always asked about the little strobe I place behind the bride’s gown during the presentation. It’s fired optically with my off camera Quantum flash which is creating the “key” light or direction of light on the subject. That little light accents the back of the veil just the right amount to add a little spice to the final photograph.

OK, this is important. I’m giving you the “low-down” on this little strobe. I get it from B&H. That little light is pretty cheap – about $25, and works pretty darn well. The one I use even has an adjustable hinge on it so I can angle it up pointing it directly on the back of the bride’s gown or lower if I have her in a seated position.

Here is how I do it. Position it about 12 feet behind the bride (or bride and groom) and make a test image. On the rare occasion, that it is too bright – say because of the bride's thin veil – I simply throw on a layer diffusion such as a clean handkerchief over it. I guess I could use a dirty handkerchief, but that might “gross” out the bride so opt for the first suggestion. Give it about 6 seconds to recharge and shoot away again. It’s a nice look, and I think adds just that little extra garlic to the shot.

Here are three links to 3 models available at B&H.
Smith Victor PG250S Wireless Mini Slave – my favorite right here – about $23.50.
Smith Victor PG160S Wireless Mini Slave – a little less powerful right here, and only $16.50.
SP Systems Mini Slave Strobe – another version the first one right here – only $24.50

Check them out as specs may tend to change – it’s a handy dandy little gadget to add to your camera bag.


  1. Thanks for the recommendation. I'm going to pick up one of these little guys and play with it.

  2. Hi David. I saw you using this unit at the PSW2007 precon workshop. Can you use this slave flash with a 550EX, which fires a pre-flash? Thanks!