This week, my friend Tia and I decided to try a different approach to a portrait. When you take a portrait in photography, there is typicallya set of guidelines you as a photographer should follow. These guidelines include framing, location, lighting, and making sure your subjects eyes are the focus point etc. We both knew the guidelines, but Tia and I wanted to try something a little bit different. Our idea would require her to stand in front of a curtain in a sort of mid-dance pose with a flower would be draped and in focus over her skirt. We thought this would be easy but quickly learned otherwise. The first issue that we encounter was the flower being too short. The flower would be clamped and draped to a light stand, so we already were working with little stem to begin with. During the process of cutting the leaves off, I accidentally cut the stem in half making the stem even shorter. The final result was us having to tape the stem together and edit out the tape later. The next issue we encountered was problems with the focus point. I wanted the flower to be sharply in focus and then have Tia in the background slightly out of focus. The focus point was so close to the lens that everything beyond it got completely blurred out, making it hard to tell tia was even there. My solution for this was to have move my aperture from f/4 to f/11, bringing foreground and background objects more into focus. However, by my aperture smaller, I was now allowing less light in through the lens which made the image too dark. I was already pushing my ISO at about 2000 and didn’t want to go higher, so I used an external flash. I wanted to set up a diffuser, but our time was very limited, so I knew I had to use what I had. Diffusion surfaces are typically white, just like ceilings. I pointed the flash up towards the ceiling and fired a shot. The shadows were too hard so I changed the angle of the flash backward and away from the subject so that less concentrated beams of light would illuminate the scene. We ran into a few issues during this shoot and though we weren’t too happy with the end result, it was still fun to work thought the kinks and challenges that we faced, and we both had a really fun time doing it.
Until next week! - Evan