Image Review for Teenage Portrait
We can flick back through some of these photos. So you can see taking that first test shot. And when you're using strobes like that, it's just a matter of putting those lights in a different position, moving them in and out, feathering them. You know, changing the aperture that you're shooting with to be able to control the brightness and how much light you're actually capturing there. So for me, this is something that's a little different and out of my comfort zone but I love doing it because it gets me really inspired. It gets me motivated to want to create. So that was the second shot we took. This is where we didn't have that strip coming in onto the background to separate. So if we go to the next one, I think that's where we introduce the strip. Yep. So you can see just that little bit of extra light now coming in to create that separation. And what it's done is created that beautiful sort of circular light around her as well. So that light's not just coming in from one place and ...
bursting her there. So fabric is very very difficult to get perfect in camera. Unless you're spending a really long time styling it and getting it absolutely perfect in place. But I know that I can really soften that and create some beautiful lines in post. And it's going to be absolutely gorgeous. So we go to the next exposure and that's just a little too bright there on that background. And then toning it down again. So we can start to have some fun. But what I like to do with these sort of exposures is put them all one by one, side by side, and start to sort of zoom in, have a look at the detail, the expression in the face, and then start to look at which one, which lighting setup or intensity is best for this particular photo. So we'll go to the next one. Yeah, and this is where we start to play with the crown. But obviously you don't want to have every photograph with the crown and that's why I did it with and without. So it's nice to change things up a little bit. And then changing the brightness there, increasing the intensity, which is perfect. So I'm loving these expressions. A little softer with the hand in the hair and that little smile. And then standing so, you can see here that very first capture with the shadow coming here across the eye so the next one is where we brought that hair back and took that shadow away and you can see the beautiful catch light in both eyes. So I love that little expression there because it's kind of like a deep in thought process. And increasing that exposure. Something a little different. And in black and white that's going to be absolutely gorgeous. And these are just going to be a little more moodier without that connection towards the camera as well. Yeah, these are lovely. And then that first one. You can see those two lights coming through here but we wanted the light to come from here so we had to remove the light, bring it forward and up, elevate that. And that was where we did that. So the screen is a little bit brighter in terms of what the capture actually looks like, which I'm completely happy with. In post I'm probably going to crop this. I'm going to soften that fabric and I'm going to control some of those highlights and shadows to really give this image some depth which is going to be beautiful. But I love the simplicity of this. Next. That's the last one? Oh cool. (laughs) Alright. We got some questions?
Yes, let's start with our studio audience. See if you have any. Grab a mic. One person online had asked whether those tones that were really beautiful and you mentioned they matched her eyes beautifully, did you do that on person or--
Were the tones selected based on the other things that were your inspiration?
Yeah, so I actually picked those primary colors because I find them really rich and when you're working with reds, greens, and blues and golds it adds that beautiful kind of richness to an image in terms of that color harmony. So for me, that's where I went with that and then when I found those green gems to go on the crown and then I got the green fabric and I looked at her eyes, I was like oh this is the perfect match. So no, it wasn't an intentional match in terms of the eye color because I only met Maya just before coming in to this shoot. So that's the beautiful thing about something like this, is that you could have a family come in for a portrait and there might be somebody there that just inspires you, catches your eye, takes your breath away, and you might sort of say to your clients, do you mind if I have a little bit of a play at the end of this? I would love to photograph your daughter and create something really unique and different for you. It's okay if you say no, no problem at all. But when it comes to a shoot, it's 80 percent them, what they want, and 20 percent me, which is a little bit of play and that's where I kind of like to have things on hand in the studio that I can play with and incorporate props, all that kind of stuff. So whenever I'm out and about, if I see something that's really unique, I'll buy it and it will just sit in the studio until I'm ready to use it. And it might be just that one person that comes along and sparks that little bit of inspiration in terms of using something.
Alright, one more from online. People are wondering about your white balance and your choice of white balance when you are using these fixed lights.
Yeah, when it comes to white balance, I'm in a studio space here where there's a heap of different lights going on, but at the moment I'm pretty much auto white balance all the time. I shoot camera raw. So that means that everything I'm capturing in that raw file is there. I open it up into camera raw on my computer and then if I need to make any adjustments to my white balance I do it all there. If I was to shoot with natural light like I do every day in my studio and I've got a sort of an overcast day where the sun's popping in and out behind the clouds I don't have time to do a custom white balance every time I go to take a photograph. So I tend to stick with auto white balance. My camera is unbelievable. I shoot with a Canon 5DS and those raw files like anywhere between 50 and 60 megabytes a file. And so when I open them up in a camera raw I can just make a quick temperature adjustment in terms of that color balance (laughs). In terms of that, but I'm usually going to set it around 5500 Kelvin. I prefer my images to be nice and warm and I believe that that gives them a certain richness as well.
Great. People were definitely commenting on how beautiful the color temperature and tones, the light tones of this image were.
Absolutely. And when you're shooting with beautiful pro photo lights, and I'm using auto white balance, here I don't really have any major color issues. There's no bright colors throwing in any bad colors into my set so it's going to be pretty standard. It's going to be pretty nice.
People are asking about the backdrop. Do you have any info on that or we can share in the chatroom?
I don't, it's actually not mine. This backdrop belongs to CreativeLive, but it is a hand-painted canvas and if you can get your hands on some blank canvas and paint your own you are just going to have so much fun and create beautiful, unique backdrops for you as well. I love doing that in my studio. But as you can see, it's lighter in the middle and darker on the outside which is perfect for framing your subjects and things like that. You can buy lots of canvas backdrops online but it depends on your budget. But if you feel creative and you like painting and getting your hands dirty, I suggest painting your own which is also an incredible experience. (laughs)