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Using a Fan for Windblown Effects

Shooting portraits of women? Buy a fan. Not just a fan, a powerful, hurricane-force commercial fan that would put most of your lighting equipment in jeopardy if you were to ever turn it on to its highest possible setting. Anyway, a fan with a nice kick to it (like the Lasko 3520 20" Cyclone Pivoting Floor Fan, for around $35) creates a windblown hair effect that can add energy and excitement to your portraits (besides making the subject’s hair look full and glamorous). The fan should be positioned on the ground, aiming upward at your subject, and once the fan is in place and turned on, there’s not much else to do but shoot. If you get a huge, paying, fashion cover shot gig and you want to really impress your new clients, buy the only fan I’ve found that is made for shooting fashion—the Bowens Jet Stream 350 Wind Machine. With its 2500-rpm blast and a wireless remote, it’ll be knocking your clients off their feet (and it should—it sells for around $1,465). B&H Photo has ‘em in stock. What the heck—buy two!.

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