May 18, 2013
Ed Verosky’s popular series of e-books have just been expanded with another title – Basic Lighting for Portrait Photography
It is designed to quickly walk you through several lessons which will allow you to create sophisticated lighting from day one, and you’ll learn more each step of the way. You can start from anywhere in the book and use any of the setups right away, but I suggest going through each chapter in order, learning a fundamental technique and building upon it as you progress through the book.
May 17, 2013
video clip: photo session with Litepanels Sola 4 fresnel lights – w/ Ulorin Vex
A behind-the-scenes video clip of the photo session with Ulorin Vex.
We did three different setups with Ulorin Vex – three different outfits by Ulorin, and three different ways of using these lights. Even though I used very specific lights here – the Litepanels Sola 4 LED Fresnel Lights (B&H) - I hope that the commentary, and the way the photo shoot was directed, will be instructional and perhaps even entertaining. Enjoy!
May 16, 2013
photography workshops & seminars for 2013
New York workshop dates for 2013
The full-day workshops on on-location lighting in New York, will be held on the following dates:
May 21, 2013 (Tuesday) - NYC - 2 spots still open
July 16, 2013 (Tuesday) - NYC - 5 spots still open
Oct 22, 2013 (Tuesday) - NYC - 8 spots still open
These workshops will each be limited to 10 people, and there will be two models available. I do want to give everyone as much individual attention, hence the limit in class size.
individual workshops & tutoring sessions
If none of the dates (and places) suit your schedule, I do offer individual photography workshops, as well as tutoring sessions which can be in person at my studio in NJ, or via Skype.
available light photo session in the studio – Elle
During the same photo session with Elle where the aim was for Hollywood Glamor lighting style with video lights, I also wanted to change it up completely with an entirely different look and lighting – an available light photo series in the studio. With so much light flooding into the studio, it was just a matter of positioning Elle into the light. To get away from a blank wall, the background was a backdrop.
And yes, the studio needs more furniture. We’ll revisit this territory with future shoots. But even with such a minimalist setting, the photographs came out surprisingly well.
May 15, 2013
creating Hollywood Glamor lighting with video lights
The old Hollywood masters such as George Hurrell, CS Bull and Laszlo Willinger had a dramatic way of lighting their portraits, with specific use of light and shade.
For my review of the Litepanels Sola 4 LED Fresnel Lights, I had Ulorin Vex as model. Her style and clothing are quite unique, and dramatic enough that these lights enhanced her look. I loved what we came up with.
In using these Litepanels Sola 4 LED Fresnel Lights (B&H) to specifically emulate Hollywood Glamor lighting, I called in another model, Elle Olins. Elle has that smoldering look to her that turned out to be perfect for this style of lighting.
May 14, 2013
review: Litepanels Sola 4 LED Fresnel Light - (model: Ulorin Vex)
The dramatic look that video lights lend to photographs, is a regularly explored topic on Tangents. I also cover the use of video light in my book Direction and Quality of Light.
The video lights that I have been favoring, are the Lowel ID-Light (B&H), but like other halogen video lights, it tends to run hot. Of the LED lights, I have used the Litepanels MicroPro LED video light (review) and now the Litepanels Croma – variable color temperature LED video light (review). The LED lights tend to be under-powered for some uses. Also, video lights tend to be small light sources, and hence quite contrasty. So there are some limitations.
So when Litepanels contacted me to ask me if I’d like to try out the Litepanels Sola 4 LED Fresnel Lights (B&H), I was quite keen. Especially because the arrival of these lights coincided with one of my favorite models, Ulorin Vex, visiting the East Coast for a few weeks. Ulorin Vex’s dramatic style and clothing would be very well suited to this kind of lighting.
Also check out the behind the scenes (but hopefully quite instructional) video clip about this 3-part photo session.
May 10, 2013
photo session – Modern Gypsies – stilt-walking Showgirl
On the same day that we did the Silver Birds photo session with the Modern Gypsies, we did a few other setups, including this one where Irene was on stilts … as a showgirl. Since the photos are meant for their promotional material, we needed to make the images vibrant.
We scouted around a warehouse district of Brooklyn, looking for interesting backgrounds. I felt that this huge mural would make a colorful background compared to the bright white costume.
Still working with the Profoto Acute B2 600 W/s powerpack (B&H), and a Profoto beauty dish (B&H) for our lighting. Lots of juice in a very portable arrangement, and easy to set up.
May 9, 2013
wedding photography – make those moments happen!
Anticipation and timing on the photographer’s part is essential to getting those key moments on the wedding day. Certain moments will happen, so we have to be ready for them.
This relies on your keen observation and you ability to recognize important moments. You have to know your cameras and equipment, and you have to know the fundamentals of photography. You have to be ready. And you can only be ready if you know your equipment well, and know the techniques. No excuses.
But there is no need to passively wait for moments - it is also possible to make them happen. And even though the photographer is guiding the process here, what is captured is still very true to the day’s events.
Here is an example of how I nudge things along to make sure I get a wonderful moment.
May 7, 2013
photo session – Modern Gypsies – Silver Birds
Regular followers of Tangents, and everyone who has a copy of my book, off-camera flash, should be familiar with the Modern Gypsies. They are a performance group in Brooklyn and I count myself fortunate that I sometimes get to collaborate with them on promotional photos for them. It’s always exciting to work with inspiringly creative people. At the start of the month, we got together for another series of photo shoots, of which this is the first of the four. I’ll post the other sections in follow-up articles.
The theme here – Silver Birds. This silver-painted rooftop in Brooklyn, and the expansive blue sky seemed to work work well as complementary colors.
The sun is brutally bright, so I knew I’d need take along powerful off-camera flash. For ease of use, and for portability, I went with the usual Profoto Acute B2 600 W/s powerpack (B&H), and a Profoto beauty dish (B&H) with a sock.
With that setup, I was able to easily pump out Sunny 16 kind of flash – 1/250 @ f11 @ 100 ISO. Those are the settings for all the images here. I varied the power of the AcuteB powerpack between full-power and half a stop down from full power for these images. The way the Profoto beauty dish clamps on, is super-easy. Fast.
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May 6, 2013
bounce flash comparison: with & without the black foamie thing
One of the presentations that I gave at the After Dark event in St Louis, was (perhaps inevitably by now), about bounce flash photography. Part of this was a sequence explaining how the direction that you bounce your flash into, will define the light pattern on your subject. The black foamie thing helps in directing the light from your flash, especially if you want short lighting on your subject.
And here is the comparison – with the black foamie thing, and without. Without flagging the flash, there is direct flash. Then the light is flat and specular and there is a distinct hard shadow that isn’t flattering.
(To see this comparison duo larger, right-click and open the image in a new tab. )