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Author Topic: A first portrait attempt  (Read 1029 times)
BernardLanguillier
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« on: November 07, 2012, 08:22:06 AM »
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Hello my friends,

I need help from experienced portrait shooters!  Wink I started recently to a bit of portrait photography in my small home studio.



Still very much a beginner but I somehow like this photograph of some of our friend's little girls.

This was shot with a D800 + 85mm f1.4 AF-S and 3 Profoto 500 Air mono lights.

Advise most welcome!

Thanks.

Cheers,
Bernard
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Wim van Velzen
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« Reply #1 on: November 07, 2012, 08:47:36 AM »
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Don't use stitching fot better detail. Those kids are always moving...  Sad

Kudos on getting into new territory! Having no studio myself, I cannot offer you advice apart from the fact that is as much or even more about connecting to people than about lightning etc. The ,ore energy you put into it, yhe better the pictures.

Looking at your first attrmpt, you will do well!
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BernardLanguillier
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« Reply #2 on: November 07, 2012, 03:44:17 PM »
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Don't use stitching fot better detail. Those kids are always moving...  Sad

Kudos on getting into new territory! Having no studio myself, I cannot offer you advice apart from the fact that is as much or even more about connecting to people than about lightning etc. The ,ore energy you put into it, yhe better the pictures.

Looking at your first attrmpt, you will do well!

Thanks for your encouraging words Wim.

Cheers,
Bernard
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marvpelkey
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« Reply #3 on: November 08, 2012, 09:22:20 PM »
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Bernard,

I am neither a portrait photographer nor a user of flash, so I can't offer much technical advice in those areas. However, I would like to say that I quite like this image, in particular - the negative space around the girls (and the use of black especially). The space above the tallest girl's head is sufficient enough so her bent head appears to be an act of affection towards her sister rather than an attempt to cram herself into the frame, I even think the mild cutting off of the young one's behind works well. The affection between the two is also captured perfectly.

Not sure if this first attempt is by chance or thoroughly thought out effort, but for a first attempt, it is quite good in my opinion.

Marv
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Richard Man
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« Reply #4 on: November 09, 2012, 02:09:17 AM »
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Really nothing to complain about the image per se. Anything would be nitpick.

Technical details aside, there are 3 "connections" with portraits:

- between the viewer and the image
- between the subject and the photographer
- and if there are multi-subjects, between themselves

You nailed all 3. What's not to like?
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opgr
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« Reply #5 on: November 09, 2012, 02:47:28 AM »
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LOL @ Wim and the stitching remark. Funny.

- Girl nr 1 has too harsh and too many shadows in her face. Like with halloween holding a torch-light under your chin kind of photo. She also has a somewhat cramped expression.

- Clothes are distracting and far too light. This was probably a spontaneous test shot, but next time ask them to wear darker and possibly matching clothes so the faces will stand out more. Otherwise tone the clothing down in post by applying excessive gradients.

- I presume one of your lights was on the top-right somewhere, moving that light further away to your back or lowering its position may help the face shadows and hair color. Clothing would still be a problem here.

As a rough rule of thumb I would like to see the center of the light cone shine on the center of attention in the image. As it is currently, the light cone seems to light the clothing + arm of girl nr 2, which is a very uninteresting and distracting part of the image. Also, knowing you own some of those creamy nikkors, may I suggest some shallower depth trials. It's not like you need to extract every bit of excruciatingly sharp detail in this type of "landscape" subject...



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Regards,
Oscar Rysdyk
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BernardLanguillier
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« Reply #6 on: November 09, 2012, 03:41:34 AM »
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Great, thanks, this is exactly the kind of comments I was looking for.

It was indeed an improvised shoot (had less than 30s to re-adjust the lights) and these 2 were moving a lot... Outside the sweet spot of the beauty dish. Smiley

So the other images have a better light focus, but this is my favorite from a "content" standpoint.

Thanks again for taking the time to provide feedback.

Cheers,
Bernard
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RSL
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« Reply #7 on: November 10, 2012, 02:29:11 PM »
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Really nothing to complain about the image per se. Anything would be nitpick.

Technical details aside, there are 3 "connections" with portraits:

- between the viewer and the image
- between the subject and the photographer
- and if there are multi-subjects, between themselves

You nailed all 3. What's not to like?

+1
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BernardLanguillier
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« Reply #8 on: November 16, 2012, 07:05:46 AM »
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+1

Thanks.

Cheers,
Bernard
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