Hannah Couzens shoots all things bright and colourful with the new Profoto B10

26 October, 2018

Written by: Ailish Cook

Finding yourself surrounded by fields of lavender and sunflowers is a welcome change to busy city life, and where better to test a new product? We went with Hannah Couzens to the Hertfordshire countryside, where all was needed was one bag, one model and the photographer herself to create some bright and colourful portraits with the new Profoto B10.

Introducing the Profoto B10

Our brand new Profoto B10 is a big light in a small package, inspired by space, portability, and getting the shot. The quality of light it delivers brings continuous creative possibilities, and ease-of-use means it can be taken anywhere at any time. With the power of 5 speedlights and compatibility with 120+ light shaping tools, it provides constant photographic flexibility and consistency.

Portability is key

The portability of the B10 is crucial to its design. At Hannah's location shoot, the distance from field to field meant that her equipment needed to be lightweight and easy to transport, which is why with the B10 to hand, she could tackle anything. She aimed to create three looks that were inspired by her surroundings. This included a lavender, barley, and sunflower field backdrop, aiming to capture nature's finest with model Georgia Dispenza.

 

Bringing out the purple

The first shot Hannah wanted to get was in the lavender fields, where a mix of sun and cloud provided her with some uncertainty but the opportunity to creatively problem solve.

"We were very lucky to have a sunny day with some great scattered clouds. I was actually waiting for the cloud cover before shooting in the lavender as the colour was so much more vivid in the shade.

One thing I did want to achieve was for the light not to spill everywhere and especially not to light up the lavender, so I chose a more focused light shaper, the 2ft OCF Octa. In general, I prefer to use circle light shapers when shooting outside to keep things looking a little more natural.

Using just one B10 and the OCF Octa I was able to use the cloud cover to bring out the colour of the lavender but add a little bit of fill flash on to Georgia's face and put a catchlight in her eye. I made sure to keep it subtle and as natural looking as possible."

A trip into the barley

The sun decided to make a prolonged appearance in the first shot of Hannah's second set up, so the OCF Magnum was brought out to balance the bright and overhead ambient light, whilst providing a balanced exposure on the model in the barley fields.

"I loved the scene over the barley field with the clouds and blue sky. The sun was intense but this enhanced the barley. The downside is that due to the time of day and the overhead sun, there were some hard shadows forming under Georgia's eyes and nose.

I wanted to lift the shadows but keep the light quality the same on Georgia so I chose the OCF magnum with the B10 placed in the same direction as the sun to lift the shadows but not to lose that hard sunlight feel."

The OCF Magnum paired with the Profoto B10 gave Hannah the opportunity and consistency required to experiment with different outfits and poses with the model, without having to worry about the conditions.

 

"In the second set-up the cloud cover created quite a cold looking image so I decided to add a little warmth back into the scene by adding a 1/2 CTO gel to one B10 to create a subtle warm hair light.

The other B10 with a 2ft OCF Octa was my key light to pop a catchlight and some fill on to Georgia's face so I could keep the blue sky behind without her becoming underexposed."

Shooting in a field with a thousand suns

The Core Backpack S made transporting the B10 easier than ever due to its design for the fast-moving photographer. Inside this, Hannah was able to fit 2 Profoto B10 lights, 3 lenses, her Sony camera body and triggers. There was also space for a 15" laptop and additional accessories. Utilising its portability, Hannah took the B10 to a sunflower field nearby to test its power and ease of use.

"I wanted to capture the sunflower shot from two angles. I thought sunflowers were always mean to face the sun, but these ones were being backlit and looked great. I also really liked the way the sun was acting as a hair light. I used one B10 with an OCF Octa to once again light Georgia's face but all the time keeping a natural, balanced look.

 

 

Finally, I liked the colour of the sunflowers against the blue sky so we switched angles and used the B10 and Octa to light Georgia as I shut down the ambient light a little to bring out the blue sky."

 

Minimised restrictions

The B10 minimised restrictions and enabled flexible work for Hannah.

"I never like to be restricted by anything when I shoot. I want to be able to shoot where I want and work with the scene to create the best image possible. The size of the B10 is so impressive and to not be restricted by cables or battery packs is just amazing.

To have that power in such a small, lightweight unit is just fantastic as it means I can fit two lights, plus my camera gear into one backpack that I can take anywhere. Having that freedom to move plus the power to shoot in any conditions means my creativity has no limits.

Being able to fit all of my equipment into one bag meant that I could put on the backpack and walk up the hills and climb over fences easily to get to where the scenery was best on the farm.

Whether I was using the B10 for some subtle fill or to lift the shadows from the bright midday sun, I was never restricted to create the shots that I wanted."

A big thank you to Hannah for telling us about her experience with the new Profoto B10. To discover the power of small, click here. Or to see more of Hannah's work, visit her website or Instagram.

 

Written by: Ailish Cook

Products used in this story

OCF Softbox Octa

Ideal for flattering portraits, used with off-camera flashes

OCF Color Gel Starter Kit

A kit with a Grid and Gel Holder and 10 popular gels

OCF Magnum Reflector

Adds maximum power to our flat fronted lights
New

Core BackPack S

A sleek backpack for the fast-moving photographer
New

Li-Ion Battery for B10

A spare battery for the B10