When you start using artificial lighting, it’s as if a door to a whole new world opens up in front of you. There are so many different looks you can achieve just by playing around with the lights and their color, position and intensity.

If you want to add color to your portrait, gels are your “weapon of choice”. mexican photographer Edgar Salgado willingly uses them in his work, and he shared with us his montage for two-tone portraits that seem to come from a future… Or from a synthwave album.

Equipment and setup

To take these photos, Edgar used his trusty Canon EOS RP paired with a Sigma Sport 70-200mm f/2.8 lens and a EF to R adapter. For lighting, he used three Godox AD400 with different gels and modifiers. Two strobes on the sides of his models have been modified with Softbox 65cm and one Rosco Magenta Geland the one at a 45 degree angle had a Octabox 90cm with a Rosco Cyan Gel. Here is an illustration to give you a better idea of ​​how the lights have been positioned:

Once the photos were finished, Edgar used Capture One and Photoshop to do the beauty retouching and bring out the colors.

Cheaper equipment alternatives

Of course, if you’re on a budget or new to studio flash photography, there are less expensive pieces of equipment you can use. For instance, Yongnuo Flashes are quite inexpensive, priced at less than $85. Same goes for this company. light modifiers priced at around $30. Of course, you can even make them yourself, which we always encourage. Finally, the camera doesn’t have to be very expensive either.

I hope Edgar’s photos have served as inspiration and guidance for you in making colorful portraits like this. Take a look at more photos below and be sure to follow Edgar on instagram and Twitter.

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