Illumination ~ trailer

A short trailer for Illumination. The ultimate training video experience for lighting portraits on location. Presented by Damien Lovegrove.
The full production is just under 2 hours long and is split into 18 chapters of full HD video covering the use of speedlights, big flash and natural light.

More information including the kit used by Damien Lovegrove can be found here.

Please feel free to ask questions below.

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About Damien

Damien Lovegrove learned his trade as a cameraman and lighting director during 14 years at the BBC, working on programmes such as the Clothes Show, Top of the Pops and Casualty. Fifteen years on, Damien has become one of the foremost trainers of photography and entrepreneurial business strategies in our industry. A published writer and regular columnist, Damien has travelled the globe sharing his knowledge and expertise. “Photography fascinates me” declares Damien. "Much of my photography is inspired by a burning enthusiasm within me” explains Damien. “Picking up a camera gives me such a rush that I’m instantly driven to create pictures.”

8 thoughts on “Illumination ~ trailer

  1. I paid for the download and after a bit of a faff got it playing on my iPad
    Being an XT1 user full time it is a real bonus to see such a great instructional video.
    Excellent so far Damien !

  2. Hi Damien,

    I really like your tutorial videos and have watched a few on YouTube recently. Thanks very much for the tips regarding off-camera flash. I think your photography is very good and you explain techniques and work arounds very well.

    I’m really interested in buying the cactus v6 triggers and wondered if you’ve used them on a Fuji X Pro-1 yet? I’m trying to find out if they can give the 1/180s-1/250s usual flash synch a boost to the faster shutter speeds. Do you know if this is possible please?

    The trigger looks really well made and the price is fantastic so I’m definitely tempted.

    Keep up the good work!



  3. Hello Damien,

    I recently downloaded your Illumination video. I just watched it once and will several times more. I really like your style and explanation of your techniques.

    Anyway, I’m a bit confused about using soft box and umbrellas. When do you prefer silver umbrella over soft box and vice versa?

    Thank you!



  4. Hi Neal,

    Thanks for your kind words about my videos. I’ve used the Cactus V6 on my X100, X-Pro1, X-E2 and my X-T1. On the X-T1 I use 1/180th X setting on the speed dial and on the X-Pro1 I use 1/125th setting. I could nudge the shutter speed up to 1/180th but it resets after the camera is off then on again so I just stick with 1/125th. The speed restriction is not a factor of the Cactus It is the camera shutter. All the Cactus does is say ‘fire’ to the Speedlight. There is provision to dial in some delay but I’ve just used the units straight out of the box. There is provision for generic HSS when used with the Cactus RF60 but I just use ND filters if I want a wider aperture. The viewfinder or LCD image is still spot on :)

    I hope this helps.


  5. Hi Ondrej,

    First of all thank you for purchasing my video and for your kind words. I show both soft boxes and umbrellas in the video because photographers usually have a preference for one or the other. Here is my take on what they do and why I use them:

    Umbrella is tiny, fits in the Quadra box without any other bag to carry. It is easy to set up and delivers soft light almost everywhere. I use it with my Gemini bracket when I’m working with Speedlights. Umbrellas come in various guises, soft silver, hard silver, pearlescent white and 50/50 transluscent. Each have their uses: Soft silver for outside portraits in open spaces. Hard silver when a bit of dapple can land on a background to add to the look (also get about 1 more stop of light than soft silver). Pearlescent white when i’m reflecting light into it for group shots at weddings or interior portraits where the spill through the brolly adds to the look by reducing shadow contrast. 50/50 white when shooting through at functions where space it tight.

    Softbox can be controlled with a grid to allow the light to just fall where it is needed but is bulkier and more time consuming to set up than a brolly.

    I hope this helps.

    Kind regards,


  6. Hi Damien,

    Thank you for broad answer. It helped me a lot.

    I also downloaded your Speed light mastery and Hollywood portraits. Your videos are quite inspiring, I really like your revisualization. I never thought about hard light like this before.

    My goal is to understand the light so that I can thing more about photography than equipment. But I am still confused when to prefer soft/hard light. I understand that it depends on my taste, but it is hard to decide which one will be better for the shot.

    Do you have some tip, rule or something when to prefer one over the other?

    In Speedlight mastery you use mainly TTL, but in Illumination it is more about manual modes. Which one do you prefer? Manual seems to be more constant and TTL seems to be more reliable when shooting say on events…

    Thanks in advance


  7. Hi Ondrej,

    Hard light is more flattering as it narrows faces etc but soft light is kinder to complexion. Hard light is punchier and more exciting, soft light is safer. The choice is yours.

    When I shot Speedlight Mastery the photography world was TTL mad (because of the Strobist thing in the US partly driven by Pocket Wizard with their TT1 and TT5 to sell) but now thank goodness Manual flash working is where it’s at. I use manual flash on location and in the studio. TTL has a place at functions as you mention.

    I hope this helps.


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