Stella Lights Easy to Rig for Portrait Photography – Anywhere

Xinxin Li


I am always looking for equipment that will make my work more efficient and give me the results I want. I recently got my hands on the new Stella lights and was very pleased on how I could use them in tight quarters and not have to worry about my assistants tripping over cables. These LED lights worked out well because the lights are daylight balanced. In my set up I had the skylight that threw a little light on the model’s hair but alone it was not AlanWeissman_Portraitenough light.

I combined the skylight with the small stella for a really nice shine on her hair. Behind me was a window also letting in a small amount of light onto my model.  I overpowered the window light with the Stella Pro 5000. The set up was exactly the way I would set up my strobes but it was so much faster to set up and move around. No power packs to deal with, just a few stand with very small lights but throwing a lot of light. I was very surprised that I was able to get the f stop and depth of field I needed.

These lights are perfect for a location portrait. In the photo above you can see I added the small Stella 2000 to separate the model from the background and light her hair. I decided to put some diffusion on the hair light to spread and soften the light. I personally always use 3 lights minimum 2 for the back. I use 2 lights on the hair or 1 light hair, one light on the background. I added a Profoto OCF Softbox to the bigger Stella Pro 5000 light (a nice advantage) and this a nice quality key light.

The Stella equipment was so small and light it made it easy to work around and try different set ups. My makeup artist and assistant were not tripping over cables for a change. I am also guilty of that.

The best part was I was scouting a place in the house to shoot and it was easy to leave the light on a small stand and do a few tests to see where I wanted to shoot without being lazy to tear down and move my strobes from room to room. This saved me a lot of time.  I can’t wait to try the Fresnel lens – I see myself doing lots of dramatic shots with this narrow Fresnel – It has a very defined hard edge which will be perfect for Film Noir photography.

About Alan Weissman:
Alan Weissman has a talent for bringing out the best in his subjects.  Whether working with Charlize Theron, Morgan Freeman or a budding young actor, Weissman strives for the same level of excellence. Widely recognized by casting directors, managers and agents for capturing an subjects essence and range, Weissman has the personality to playfully disarm his clients and make them feel they are not in front of a camera. This, together with his technical gifts, makes for an honest, open and authentic photo. Alan has also worked shooting celebrity portraits for The Bravo Channel, American Movie Classics, HBO, FOX and National Geographic Channel.

Alan’s work has exhibited at the Bergamot Station, Cal State Northridge, Brooklyn Museum, Fowler Art Museum at UCLA and the Polaroid Museum in Boston, MA

For more information about his work:, and Happy Clients