One of the stands I purposefully made my way to at Focus on Imaging in Birmingham last week, was the Lastolite stand. I have several of their products and their original collapsible reflectors have to be one of the best accessories ever invented.
I was particularly interested to see the HiLite Background system, which bears a passing resemblance to a huge softbox, but used as a background (the clue is in the name) instead of as a primary light source. There were several reasons why I wanted to see it:
- I’m in the market for a new background “system” and high-key is a real challenge for me as I only have two lights
- My TDM buddy, Charlie, said I should take a look and he’s often been right about the kind of gear that works for me
- I didn’t see how it could possibly be any good (sorry Lastolite – pre-judging like this is unfair) and this was my opportunity to check it out
Well, I liked what I saw. Clearly, it does work (although I have not yet got my hands on one to test it fully). However, one possible stumbling block preventing me from investing is that I don’t always want a white background; I regularly shoot low-key against a dark grey background.
Anyway, today I learned that Lastolite has brought out a set of new “Bottletop” covers to provide a little more versatility. These include black and grey versions (I’m assuming you switch the back light off, at least for the black version!) and Chromakey versions in both blue and green. Simply slip the elasticated bottletop cover over the HiLite background to produce an instant change of colour. They also come complete with a train (although I’m struggling to find out exactly how long the train actually is). Now I’m excited!
Here’s the new range:
HiLite Bottletop Cover with Train 5â?? x 7â??
Black â?? LAS 8702 SRP Â£54.99 Inc vat
Grey – LAS 8770 SRP Â£54.99 Inc vat
Chromakey Blue â?? LAS 8788 SRP Â£54.99 Inc vat
Chromakey Green â?? LAS 8781 SRP Â£54.99 Inc vat
HiLite Bottletop Cover with Train 6â?? x 7â??
Black â?? LAS 8802 SRP Â£64.99 Inc vat
Grey – LAS 8870 SRP Â£64.99 Inc vat
Chromakey Blue â?? LAS 8888 SRP Â£64.99 Inc vat
Chromakey Green â?? LAS 8881 SRP Â£64.99 Inc vat
You can find out more about Lastolite products by visiting www.lastolite.com or by phoning 01782 753304.
I need to get hold of one of these for a proper test – I’m not sure whether I will still need to get a third light to illuminate the HiLite, or whether using one of my lights for the HiLite and one for the primary light source would be enough. Still, I was anticipating an additional two lights for the background so this could still be a good solution.