Archive for October 2010

Violinist II

October 5th, 2010 — 9:17pm

Tonight I had a chance to photograph my girl again during her practice and I used a different lighting setup. Wanted to do two things differently - move from low key to mid key, and give more emphasis to the background.

Lighting setup: 3 portable flashes - no ambient light was used.

Key light - to camera left, SB800 with 20 degree grid.

Fill light - SB800 pointing to the wall to camera left (not visible) - barebulb, used the wall as a bounce reflector.

Accent light - there is an SB-24 flash hidden behind the lamp on the top right corner. The lamp was actually turned off, and the light you see coming from it is the flash.

I am not too happy about her frontal position and the shadows of the bow and her right hand, but this is just an exercise for me to try different lighting setups at home. The way to eliminate this shadow problem would be to have her wear dark, which would change the mood. I coould also reduce the shadow contrast using a larger source of illumination, but that would change the light structure in the background. So I would need to think about it more.

The original color image had a color shift, with the fill being 5600K and the key and accent being 3200K color, but I wasn’t pleased with the color trickery and decided to process to black and white with Photoshop. Simple is good.

Violinist II

Violinist II

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Tired violinist practicing on a Sunday evening

October 3rd, 2010 — 9:34pm

We had a full weekend enjoying the nice weather. My daughter didn’t do her violin practice until Sunday evening, and she was really tired by the time she started. She patiently practiced and waited for me to set up lights, and finally she posed for me. Then she lied down and went to sleep. You can see her sleeping in the “behind the scenes” image below.

Tired violinist

Tired violinist

And the behind the scenes setup:

Sleeping musician and lighting set up

Sleeping musician and lighting set up

I had a couple of technical issues with this simple portrait:

(1) The shoot-thru umbrella was sending light up and to the wall, producing a shadow of the umbrella, I solved this by standing a piece of black foam core board on the umbrella, behind the flash, blocking light from going to the background wall.

(2) Her sweater was red - I did the B&W conversion of the sweater separately to achieve a darker tone that wouldn’t compete with her face.

(3) The flash on the keyboard was spreading light too much - I solved this my wrapping a piece of cinema foil around the head and making a snoot out of it to focus the light on the keyboard.

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