Education

A Night Out With The Photojojo Pocket Spotlight

By Severin - 7 min read

Last night we took out this tiny, yet super powerful device to the Movember gala parté to see how it performs with a horde of moustache wearing men.

The Photojojo Pocket Spotlight is a tiny, yet super powerful device that brightens up even the darkest and dullest scenes. Last night we took it out to the Movember gala parté to see how it performs with a horde of moustache wearing men.

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What is the Photojojo Pocket Spotlight?

The Photojojo Pocket Spotlight is a tiny, battery-powered 32 LED light for your phone. As opposed to your built-in flash, it gives you a constant light source that you can use for all kinds of things: photos, videos, or finding your keys in the dark. The Pocket Spotlight is charged via USB and comes with one mount for the earphone slider of your phone, and one for the hotshoe of your old Canon, Nikon or any other camera.

Our setup: A Sony Xperia Z1, EyeEm and the Photojojo Pocket Spotlight

What do you need it for?

If you actually see how small and lightweight this device is, you’ll be surprised by how bright it shines. It’s intense. While you won’t be able to lighten up entire landscapes, it’s best for scenes that are 1 to 2 meters away.We especially recommend using the Pocket Spotlight for portraits – it produces a light that’s softer than those of many flashes and still lights up the entire scene.

Another reason why it’s great to have as a companion is its ability as a second light source. You can fire away with your phone, your phone’s built-in flash AND position the Pocket Spotlight anywhere behind, upfront, above or on the sides of your subject. When it’s mounted to your phone you can also turn it upside and use the ceiling as a reflector. This avoids your subject being completely blinded by the light and produces a more ambient light setting.

The complete Photojojo Pocket Spotlight package. We also got a little dinosaur with it.

Now let’s get to the practical part. Yesterday’s Movember Gala Parté in Berlin, the annual gathering ofmen growing moustaches to raise awareness for men’s health issues, was the perfect setting to put the Pocket Spotlight into action.

Here’s what we learned:

1. You can use it to light an entire scene

The Pocket Spotlight lights up an entire scene for up to 2 meters. Beyond that your image slowly fades into black, as you can see on the left corner of the photo below. The light also makes white skin and t-shirts look really white.

sitting

By Severin

2. It works great with other light sources

While your camera absorbs all the ambient light from surrounding light sources, the 32 LED bulbs of the Pocket Spotlight lighten up your subject in the front. This also works great with natural light, like photographing people in front of a glowing sunset.

night

By Severin

3. We can shoot portraits like Terry Richardson now

Before going to the party, we took the Spotlight into a pitch black room in our office and shot a few portraits. With a white wall as a background the photos turned out pretty neat and reminded us of the fashion shoots of Terry Richardson – although we admittedly might look a little different than his models.We used our Gee09 filter for the shot below.

4. It won’t freeze a moment, but captures motion blurs

As the Spotlight is a constant light sourceand not synched tothe camera’s shutter and exposure times like a flash, fast movement turn into motion blurs.But that’s not necessarily bad. Work with the effect and you can achieve very dynamic and lively shots.

real people

By Severin

5. It’s great to play with as a second light source

Detach the Spotlight from your phone and hold it in one hand and the phone in the other. It requires a little practice, but once you figure out how to shoot with just one hand, you can achieve a lot of great effects.

For this photo, we held the Spotlight on the top left and the camera with the right hand, while getting light from other light sources across the stage as well. The results are much more dynamic than with a single, frontal light source.

celebration

By Severin

Our verdict

In summary, the Photojojo Pocket Spotlight is a great little device to play around with. You might not plan a professional studio shoot with it, but for party shots and occasional portraits it’s awesome. We love that you can charge it via USB and after shooting for 3 hours at yesterday’s party, the battery still runs.

The Photojojo Pocket Spotlight is available at the Photojojo Store.

Here are some more images we took with the Pocket Spotlight that night. We processed them with our Steph, Capa, Kross and Boost filters:

Do you have a Pocket Spotlight or other detachable light source? How do you like it? Tweet us!

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