Light reflectors are great for outdoor portraits. The gold light reflector works best for early morning and late evening portrait photo shoots.

It reflects a warm golden tone on your subject and does wonders for skin tones to make them stand out against any background.

A gold light reflector can even take your daylight balanced flash and convert it to a warm color tone on your subject


Reflectors are mainly used to fill in the shadows depending on your lighting situations.

No matter how you take photographs on location you will always have one main source of light, the sun. Depending on the direction of the sun light you will have shadows on the other side of your subject.

The reflector is used to lighten or soften the dark shadows on the opposite side of your subject.

Gold reflectors like all other reflectors, come in different sizes and shapes.  The shapes can concentrate light on a specific area or flood your subject with light. 

During evening shoots, you can use a larger gold reflector to enhance the color of your subject skin. 

The gold light makes your subject look healthier because of the warm tone of light that is reflected.

When photographing a subject with pale skin it is very advisable to use a gold reflector over a white or silver reflector as the silver will just wash out their skin tone and possibly make them look ill.

The use of a small round reflector or triangular reflector is mostly used for specific areas usually small areas such as the face when it comes to head shots.

A larger triangular reflector can be used for full to half body shots as the smaller part will cover the head of your subject while the wider portion will cover the lower portions.

A large rectangular reflector can be used for groups or to flood your subject with a warm even tone by using the reflector horizontally.

A large rectangular reflector about 3ft by 5ft will work wonders to cover a larger group of persons.


There are many types of shapes for reflectors.

Circular, Rectangular, Triangle, Oval and even Octagonal. The shape of a reflector really has nothing to do with the overall outcome of the photograph. The shape is just a personal preference on the behalf of the photographer.

Some photographers prefer a circular reflector because it easy to carry, but so are the triangular and rectangular reflectors, they all fold in to a small carrying bag, small relative to its size when opened.

What is important to remember about a reflector is the size.  The size determines how much light is reflected on you subject. 

For a warm tone on a bikini model it is best to have a larger reflector.  Most photographers may prefer a large rectangular reflector to ensure the entire body is bathed in the warm light, this can help with skin tones but often may screw with the color balance of clothing, be careful of this. 

For more direct lighting a smaller reflector should be used to concentrate the light on the face and parts of the arms if they are showing

Main reflector light

Since we already know that the gold reflector warms the skin tone, we can now find ways to use multiple reflectors as light sources.

A simple set up which occurs more often than many others, where your subject’s back is toward the sun and you are facing the sun. 

In this set up you may run the risk of lens flare, not all of your clients may understand nor accept this creative technique, so you have to avoid it at all cost.

To complete your lighting set up use a fairly large reflector directly opposite the light of the sun.  This reflector will be your main light and it now makes the sun a back or hair light. 

This set up alone will add much more light on your subject, otherwise you would have to over expose your background to get a workable photo of your client. While this set up alone is acceptable as is, you can take it one step further. 

The one reflector will no doubt cast some interesting shadows on the other side of your client’s body or face, thus the use of another reflector to soften these shadows may be needed depending on what you’re going for. 

For your fill reflector simply place it further away from your subject than the main reflector. 

You now have a three light set up, the sun as a back light that supplies your main reflector with light and a fill reflector to soften the shadows.

Set your exposure for your client and the background should be well with in normal exposure.  Enjoy your new gold reflector technique.