In the last post I mentioned that my first photo shoot was with Dollybeck, I was able to work with her again a few times over the next couple of years. When you are starting out as a photographer one of the advantages of working with an experienced model is that you get the opportunity to experiment and concentrate on what you are learning, while letting them pose in the best way for the shoot.
Of course sometimes that experimentation works out better than others. These photos are from a number of shoots over time, In each of them I was trying something different, the most spectacular one being the last one in January 2010 one evening at Orroral Valley Homestead in the Namadgi National Park.
In this shoot I was experimenting with some strobist techniques using off camera flash in various positions. If I remember correctly I was using an umbrella and a small softbox.
Inspired by the Canberra Nara Candle festival, I wanted to attempt to light a model using just candles. Unfortunately the camera I was using at the time wasn't quite up to what I was trying to achieve. The gear I use now is more than capable of doing it, I really need to revisit the idea.
It was a rather cold and slightly windy night, which is a testament to what models go through to get a photo.
I built a rather large light box that models can stand, sit or lie on. Sometimes I use fluoro light tubes in the box, in this case I used a few flashes in the box, and another one overhead.
I then switched the top flash off and tried a bit of lighting from below. Lighting from below can be a bit tricky as you can end up with a very ghoulish look.
For the Orroral valley photo shoot, we started a bit before sunset and balanced a gelled flash against the ambient light. The longest exposure we used was about a minute. Most of the time I would open the shutter, walk to one side, aim and trigger the flash, walk back to the camera and close the shutter.
For the last few photos of the night, I was using a small LED key ring torch to paint the building and Dollybeck.
Even though it was early January it was still fairly coolish during the shoot. Dollybeck's husband was standing by with a very warm coat. Her mother was visiting from England and was also helping out.
I wasn't sure how the photos were going to work as it was my first attempt at something like this, and we were all very pleased with how well they turned out.