Humanitarian photographer Jeremy Snell recently packed his bag and went to Nairobi to shoot some portraits on location. The trip required a lighting solution that was light enough to carry around, but powerful enough to overpower the African sun. Plus, Jeremy knew that the gear had to be able to take a beating. Keep reading to learn what solution he found.
Hawaii-based photographer Jeremy Snell was asked to shoot a series of promotional images for the charity organization Serving Orphans Worldwide. The assignment required Jeremy to travel to Nairobi to photograph the children living at one of the organizations many orphanages. “I grew up traveling, so photographing people from all over the world is a natural thing for me,” says Jeremy. “I’ve always known I wanted to be a humanitarian photographer ever since.”
Traveling all the way from Hawaii to a faraway town in Nairobi, Jeremy needed his lighting equipment to be portable and lightweight. It was also important that the gear was easy to work with. “It has to be fast and allow me to focus on what’s in front of me,” says Jeremy. It was also important that the equipment was powerful enough to overpower the harsh African sun. Another requirement was that the flash was battery-powered.
Jeremy used two lights to create this image. His main light was a B1 off-camera flash standing camera left, quite high up on a stand, looking down at the girl. The main light was equipped with the small yet deep and parabolic Umbrella Deep S White plus a diffuser. There was a second B1 inside the building, standing in the girl’s bedroom, flashing though the window and hitting the wall to the right. “I use umbrellas more than any other Light Shaping Tool when travelling,” says Jeremy. They’re the most compact and the easiest to use. You just pull them out, stick them on your flash, and immediately you have beautiful, soft light.”
- 1 x Profoto Umbrella Deep S White + Diffuser
- 2 x Profoto B1 off-camera flashes
- 1 x Profoto Air Remote 5
A few more of the portraits Jeremy shot during the trip can be seen below. Equipment used: Profoto B1, Umbrella Deep, Octa Softbox, Softlight Reflector White (Beauty Dish) and other light shaping tools.
To see ever more of his work, head over to his website.