Sometimes the best portraits I have taken are the ones which had the least preparation, the least amount of thought and the least amount of expectations.
I am trying to find a niche in my photography. For me, its not a question of taking a nice picture. It’s taking a picture that nobody else would take. Something different. Something unique. I got a chance to exercise some creative license recently and I really pushed the boundaries in that one.
This is a new friend of mine Altin Tafilaj who plays the viola. I offered to take his portraits and we had a fantastic time trying out different poses and positions. He was most patient with me when I was figuring out the lighting strategy. This one is my favourite. He is part of a …
Canon EOS 1D Mark III
EF 24-70mm f/2.8 L at 46mm
1/300 f/4 ISO 100
Learning to utilise off camera flash has given my portrait work a new dimension. The easiest and quickest setup for me is to use 2 speedlites, 1 master mounted on camera as fill and the other as a slave acting as the main light. The master defaults to group A and set the slave as group B, set the speedlites on eTTL-II and control the ratio between the groups, make sure the main is placed to give a nice shadow effect relative to the fill on camera flash and there you have it.
Well. I don’t normally fall into the ‘trap’ of comparing camera systems especially between the Nikons and the Canons of this world. I have long ago passed the equipment obsession mode so many of us (in fact maybe all of us) seem to go through. I am happy with my Canon gear though I must admit I did go through a stage of contemplating the switch when the D3 was announced. The main reason for switching was the 200-400 f/4, the 200mm f/2 and the nicely priced full frame D3. I decided against it because I asked myself whether my photography would change as a result of the switch. I’m not one to go pixel peeping and comparing noise control especially between pro-level bodies. They all have their strengths and weaknesses and in the end, it just wasn’t compelling enough (especially because Nikon doesn’t have anything to complete with my EF 85mm f/1.2 L).
But making that decision to stick doesn’t stop me from being a bit envious of Nikon users and a bit peeved at Canon.
This one was a tough one to get right. It was in the middle of the day and the sun was high up and harsh. I set the shutter at 1/200 and aperture at f/10 so that the light from the sun was controlled. I then placed a speedlite 580 EXII directly to the boys …
This is the first portrait I’ve taken (which is not of myself) using all these wonderful lighting stuff I’ve been working on. This one is a simple setup using 2 lights. As usual, the tough part was managing the shadows. Stay tuned for more on how this image was taken.
Wow. I have spent the last 3 hours trying to get this one right. I wanted to balance the light on my face and reduce the contrast there. The problem is that I would spoil the shadow effect (which I wanted). Everything I tried would cast a spill onto the shadow. Anyway, this is going to be one of those images that’s gonna float around in my head until I get it right.
I’ll post the lighting diagram with the explanation later. The lighting diagram is below.
I took a series of self portraits as part of my experimentation in the last few days. This one is quite an interesting one.
See the lighting diagram to know how i did this shot.
Well. Not a bad shot though it was a pain to light myself properly. See how I managed to get this shot and the lighting diagram below.