Raph Nogal creates dramatic and contrasty lighting with the Profoto A1 | Profoto (CA)

Raph Nogal creates dramatic and contrasty lighting with the Profoto A1

26 March, 2018

Written by: Raph Nogal

Toronto wedding photographer Raph Nogal is known for his dramatic, contrasty and edgy lighting. He brings his Profoto A1 to every wedding and finds that it's the perfect companion to bigger Profoto lights, like the B1X, but also finds that this little light can shine bright just on its' own.

During a recent wedding, Raph and his associate Oliver, used the Profoto A1 during the getting ready portions of the day with both the bride and groom and later the B1X for outdoor portraits.

Besides being extremely reliable and with super fast recycling on-camera, one of Raph's favourite ways of using the A1 is off-camera, just like the B1X.

The wedding day started off with the groom and his groomsmen getting ready at the beautiful Adelaide Hotel in downtown Toronto. As a wedding photographer, Raph needs to be prepared for every lighting situation - dark hotel room, really bright overhead spotlights, extreme backlight and so on. He relies on Profoto to deliver the power, reliability and quality of light that he's looking for.

As the boys were getting ready for the big day, Raph noticed a large TV in one of the rooms. As the groomsman was working on his tie, Raph quickly got Oliver to hand hold the A1 and point it at the groomsman. Raph turned on the modelling light and was able to instantly see where the light was falling on the subject.

By getting close to the TV the reflection appeared more vivid and a tighter crop created a cool composition. As the groomsmen continued to work on this suspenders, the A1 was fired off-camera in manual mode.

Raph usually works in manual mode due to the very fast changing scenes, especially during getting ready. Going from a dark room to a back lit situation can be challenging, but keeping the A1 off-camera with a similar distance and power, while adjusting the shutter speed to compensate for the background gets him faster to his final image.

Here the boys were all helping each other with cufflinks, ties and jackets. Again, Oliver held the A1 off-camera and by using the modelling light, he was able to follow the groom as him moved around.

This allowed Raph to have the light in the right position for every shot, highlighting the groom amongst the chaos.

After the bride and groom had their "First Look" or "Reveal", Raph spent some time in the beautiful hotel doing portraits of the two of them. By utilizing the modelling light, Oliver was able to aim the light just in the right place and by using the zoom function, the beam was narrowed down to help contain most of it just on the bride's and groom's face. The A1 was also gelled to match the warm lights from the chandeliers in the background. Raph used a 1/2 CTO gel from the Profoto A1 Gel Kit.

To get the final image, Raph laid on the stairs creating an interesting perspective and grabbing onto the end of the veil to create some movement.

The Profoto A1 is an essential part of Raph's lighting kit and the fact that smaller and bigger lights are part of one system makes life a lot easier, especially on a chaotic, fast paced photoshoot, like a wedding day. Raph is excited to work with equipment that can keep up!

Products Used:

Profoto A1

A1 - CTO Gel Kit


See more of Raph's work:

Raph Nogal's website: https://raphnogal.com
Raph's Instagram: http://instagram.com/raphnogal
Raph's Facebook: https://facebook.com/raphnogalphotography

BTS photos by Andres Prieto

Written by: Raph Nogal