The Rim Light
Click to explore the rim light.
A rim light positioned behind the subject and facing toward the camera illuminates the edges of the subject from behind so they glow and are visually separated from the darker background. In portrait photography a rim light is often used to back light the hair.
The rim light is often set up behind the subject and slightly higher than the other lights. Because this light is facing the camera, it's important that it be completely blocked by the subject or out of the field of view. If not you may get lens flare and lowered contrast. One way to block the light is to position a piece of cardboard (called a gobo) between the light and subject.
The final image is beautifully lit and well separated from the background. It's a visually interesting image.