Ambassador Justin Baluch Talks Topside Lighting with Sola Air Kits

We caught up with one of our photo ambassadors, Justin Baluch, to find out how he works with our new Sola Air Kits to turn his Sola Pro 9600 lights into a beautiful pair of topside lights!

Heidi Hall: You shoot predominately underwater - how has the Sola Air Kit helped enhance your work?

Justin Baluch: Where the Air Kits have really shined for me is in the seamless transition from UW shooting to topside shooting using simple off-the-shelf products.  My top-side configuration has been to mount the Sola 5000 Air Kits on a pair of JOBY DSLR tripods with Nauticam Marine Ball Posts screwed on to the 1/4”x 20 threaded post, with an ultralite clamp locking the ball-joint to the light.

Justin Balauch

This gives me unlimited placement options for hanging, wrapping, or simply placing on the ground.  I haven't invested in top-side lighting before because I didn't want to carry 2 sets of lights so I invested in UW lighting and tried to accomplish the topside work with ambient lighting. Now with the Sola Air Kit I just add the interchangeable LED heads and mounts and can fit everything into one bag with my camera!  The Air Kits give me the freedom to have powerful lights for my underwater work and beautiful lighting topside in one package.

HH: What feature of the Air Kits most meets your needs for topside shooting?

Justin balauch_Stella following ModelJB: When I am working underwater color temperature is not important but when I shoot in daylight everything has to be perfect. The Air Head LED is cinema grade so I don't have to color correct and can create beautiful images straight out of the camera. I also like that the light is powerful enough to use as a key, fill, or backlight. With the sun and two Sola Air's I have all the light I need.

Justin Balauch Model Topside

HH: How does the Sola Air Kit improve your workflow?

JB: I travel around the South Pacific on assignment and never know what I will find. I have to be prepared. The Sola 9600s are compact and powerful, add the Sola Air Kit and I have an interview lighting that I can set up anywhere!

Check out Justin David Baluch's beautiful work on Instagram.

Watch how to change the Sola Pro 9600 underwater lights into cinema-grade topside lighting here!

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