A 22″ 5-in-1 Reflector Disc … Will it warm up the Midwest?!

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(Click here to go to this blog’s home page.)

The 5-in-1 reflector disc is folded up inside this 9"-diameter zip bag. (Click photo to enlarge.)

It’s sort of ridiculous that I’m writing about this photography accessory because, although it was on my Christmas wish-list, I have never used one. Since my sister Peggy gave me this accessory for Christmas, and since it is blizzarding outside, I figured why not take this snow-day opportunity to procrastinate on other things by writing this post! (Really, the reason I am most excited about posting is because on Saturday or Sunday I plan to include a link to a hilarious…maybe?…depending upon how you look at it?… video demonstrating how to use this accessory.)

First things first.  The accessory that Peggy gave to me is one I learned about from Sam Wormley in my OLLI Photography Field Trip Class. It is a 22″ Impact [brand] 5-in-1 collapsible circular reflector disc.

The 22" translucent disc with collapsible outer rim. This may be used by itself, or in combination with the gold, silver, silver-gold, or white slipcover reflectors. The disc and slipcovers are packaged together in a zip bag as one item/purchase for about $25. (See the zip bag in the first photo. See the slipcovers below.)

These slipcover reflectors may be used in combination with the translucent disc shown in the previous photo. (Click photo to enlarge.)

According to the “Features” section in the description of this accessory at www.bhphotovideo.com, this disc:

  • “…is versatile in … providing shadow-lightening detail in your subject, using available, or studio lighting. It starts out as a translucent white disc — perfect for softening direct sun, or lights without diffusion. Use the removable, reversible zippered slipcover to reflect light into shadow areas of your subject. Your choice of color — silver, gold, white, gold/silver mix — will be determined by the lighting conditions, and your personal preference.”
  • “This 22″ disc is suitable for head-shots, and small still-life setups. It folds down to 1/3 its open size, and comes with a storage sleeve. We suggest the purchase of a pivoting arm and stand, to hold the disc where needed — especially if you are working without an assistant.”

The http://www.bhphotovideo.com description continues with this when-to-use-which-slipcover information:

  1. Soft Gold combines gold and silver, creating a warm, summery feel that works great with skin tones.
  2. Silver increases the specular highlights and yields a high-contrast image. It’s perfect for video, product shots and B&W photography.
  3. Gold produces a natural, golden fill that is great for sunsets, jewelry, and indoor portraits.
  4. White produces an even, neutral-colored bounce light that works beautifully as a fill light source for both product shots and indoor/outdoor portraits.
  5. Translucent fabric is used to diffuse light, producing a broad light source and a soft, wraparound effect that’s perfect for outdoor portraits or whenever a softer light is needed.

Until I actually use the 5-in-1 reflector disc, I think I’ll still be a little confused. If you feel that way, never fear!  The video that I will link to will explain everything! If you care nothing about the reflector, but are game to be entertained, please stay tuned for this weekend’s video link.

(Click here to go to Louise Shimon’s blog’s home page.)

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3 Responses to “A 22″ 5-in-1 Reflector Disc … Will it warm up the Midwest?!”

  1. Clara Says:

    Is this the white umbrella type of thing that someone holds up near a photographer and the subject to provide better lighting of the subject? Does this mean you have to have someone else hold the disc while you take the picture?

  2. Peg Says:

    How fun to have my name mentioned! 🙂

    AND I second the motion that the video is worth the wait!!! (I viewed it when trying to figure out what the heck this was that was on Louise’s Christmas list. I happily had her name for Christmas! :-))

  3. Louise Gunderson Shimon Says:

    Peggy: Thank you for your testimonial! Since we are celebrating Bill’s birthday tomorrow (Saturday), I probably won’t get it posted until Sunday. Even I’m going to need to watch it again!

    Clara: To my knowledge, the 22″ translucent disc and a translucent umbrella work similarly. For a 25″ translucent umbrella, the B & H site says: “Probably the most basic light modifier in the photography world–the umbrella. Light reflecting off the umbrella’s interior spreads out to cover a wide area. … The … umbrella’s translucent material means you can shine the light through the umbrella, rather than reflecting off of it, giving you a soft but directional light.”

    When I put the 5-in-1 disc on my wish-list, I figured that sometime I would likely want a bigger one, but thought I’d start small. (First priority being “small” in expense, but also the portability due to being small was/is important to me.) Also, with the 5-in-1 I knew that I’d be getting the slipcovers of different colors, so considered that a bonus.

    With starting out small, I thought that I’d use the 22″ disc to experiment with taking head-shots. So, I’d probably just have the person hold it relatively close to his/her (your!) face…unless it is Jackson! (I hope you will be one of my models!)

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