Studio Portrait Lighting (a course of four classes)

Fredau - clamshell lighting / © Copyright 2012 Barrie Spence. All rights reserved.Join us in a four class course to learn the fundamentals of lighting for studio portraiture in a professional studio with an experienced tutor and models.

This is a group course (4 – 6 students) of four 2 hour classes. We also occasionally run the course as a single day class.

The first class is a tutorial session covering the core principles of studio photography. The remaining three classes are tutored shooting practising the various topics and techniques with an experienced model.

We’ll cover all the usual stuff like loop, butterfly and Rembrandt lighting, high key and low key, etc. using experienced models (both male and female).

Kris - from the studio portraiture lighting class in June / © Copyright 2012 Barrie Spence. All rights reserved.

No studio experience is necessary, but you will need a SLR camera and preferably a lens with a focal length greater than 80mm (or 50mm on a crop sensor).

The course won’t make you a master of lighting (that takes time and practice), but it will teach you that it is all relatively simple and give you the confidence to practice and grow your own experience.


  • Experience: This is not an introductory photography class, so you should be familiar with your camera.
  • Gear: Your camera should be capable of operating studio flash equipment via either a hotshoe trigger or a sync cable connected to a PC socket. A lens covering approximately 24-70mm on a full frame dSLR (or 18-55mm on a crop body) is the minimum requirement.

One-to-one tuition is also available.

Course price: £160 (for each participant & payable in advance). Price includes 20% VAT.

Upcoming dates: no courses are currently scheduled

Get in touch to book now or sign up to the newsletter to be notified about future events.

What’s been said about the course:

I attended the fundamentals of studio portrait lighting course run by Barrie Spence and his wife Fiona and I must say I thoroughly enjoyed every minute.

Barrie teaches you every thing you need to know about studio lighting in an easy and relaxed manner which makes learning fun. The models are great to work with as they strike pose after pose, or you can direct them as to the pose or look that you want. Either way you will come back with some amazing images.

Highly recommended.

Stuart Wilson

Big thanks to Barrie Spence for the portrait lighting seminar yesterday.. Learn’t a ton of stuff, very interactive, great models and an all round relaxed atmosphere. Highly recommended..

Chris Scott - studio portrait lighting workshop

A great course in a fabulous new studio. Barrie builds up your lighting knowledge each week with the added bonus of a professional model for 3 of the 4 weeks. All that plus as much coffee you can drink! Thoroughly enjoyed it.

Stuart McKenzie

Barrie Spence’s studio lighting course held at Pavilion Photographic studio was one of the best courses I have ever attended, Barrie’s knowledge and enthusiasm of his subject made the course most enjoyable.

Don Lees

Hey guys, for anyone considering getting into studio or portrait work this is the best way to get started.

Barrie knows his stuff inside out and his studio is amazing. He teaches simple to understand lighting techniques that really work.

If you look at my portraits from a year ago to now it’s due to hard work from me and guidance and tuition from Barrie Spence.

Highly recommended.

Philip Cormack - studio portrait lighting course

After seeing Pavilion Studios ad for a course on studio lighting I phoned up to see if the course was for me as I’m fairly new to photography and have no experience of studio work – Barrie assured me it was for all levels of experience and I signed up. The course was fantastic I learned so much from Barrie’s approach to teaching and it was easily the best experience I’ve had so far as a photographer. If you get the chance to go on the course you’ll not be disappointed and will learn so much. It’s given me more confidence and I’ll definately be signing up for more.

Alan McCormack

i found the portrait lighting class informative, easy going and fun. Barrie, with back up from his wife Fiona, and using a professional male or female model, covered so many styles of lighting and setups but also the poses. i can’t recommend this class highly enough not only if you want to learn about studio portraiture, but also photgraphy in general as the course covers a lot of camera control and theory etc. and Barrie is a wealth of information and experience. Highly, highly recommended!

Mark Field

New to portraiture, I found the course both stimulating and enjoyable. We were guided through the basics in and interesting and non threatening way. Working with professional models, in a real studio setting, was a great experience. I would certainly recommend this course. Lots of information and ideas to follow through…… thank you Barrie and Fiona.

Anne Robertson