Shooting from inside an airplane hangar to capture the Arizona desert behind our subjects with the blazing sun we used a 2 stop ND filter to bring down the sunlight. Without this you see only silhouettes of the subjects. The pristine hangar floor yielded a lovely reflection! Great family portraits, both the couple and family (below).
This stunningly beautiful 90 year old was a vision for the camera lens. Using existing lighting created an intimate quiet portrait.
With all the gadgets and photo editing techniques available it is important to know what to use for your subject. If using lighting keep it diffused for a soft look. Unless using a light modifier a flash will give a harshness emphasizing age lines to the point of distraction. The lovely softness in our lady’s face is due in part to those very fine line which are welcome. Part of her beauty is how comfortable she is with herself.
Another choice is converting to black and white, partially because the older generation grew up with non-color photos. Consider delivering both color and black and white to your client.
Such a fun wedding engagement session. This couple arrived in character and costume, which set a wonderful tone for the entire evening. From inside an old warehouse to the streets of Redlands, we had a wealth of of backdrops to utilize.
Sunlight was spilling into this second floor warehouse as we were shooting the engagement ring. We chose to work the sunlight and later desaturate for the quiet moment we had in mind.
This converted warehouse features a dance floor, ideal for our engagement couple with a passion for ballroom dancing. The shadows were created by Canon Speedlite flashes.
Looking into the window of an antique shop selling mirrors was ideal for the period costumes! The trick was not to be seen taking the photo. Again we used a single Speedlite handheld off to one side. What a perfect mood.
We had more fun including this feather clip-on/hat! This sunset shot looks like a happy ending. We look forward to the wedding!
This family was fun to work with. They were up for a multitude of poses. We shot until…no one had an idea left! The laughter and happiness made this session bubble over! Talk about a great afternoon in the park. We used one handheld flash for precision lighting, plus a general flash for fill. A simple set-up with bountiful results.
A white background gives a contemporary setting for this young family. Once again, the Paul Buff PLM umbrellas let us flood the set with brilliant light, focused where the photographer wanted. And the expression of the front row girl? Did someone mention: ice-cream? You have to speak their language! It was fun!
Three generations of a loving, happy family. They wanted a formal look, as well as casual later in the session). The grey background was the standout color for the session. Using Paul C Buff PLM umbrellas and Einstein Studio Flashes for a full light spread.
Paul Buff 22 inch Beauty Dish with Diffusion
Set to one side, camera right
Einstein 640 Studio Flash
Canon 6D, 35mm 1.4
Portraits for men begin with getting the subject relaxed in front of the camera. A natural relaxed position is the goal so the subject looks comfortable. You only have a few minutes to determine the best pose for any given shot. There are no hard fast rules. You’re looking for individuality.
Think you need a full studio to take a terrific dramatic portrait?
This is a simple one light portrait, referred to as “Paramount Lighting” (AKA “Butterfly Lighting”). Paramount Lighting was developed by a photographer at Paramount Studios in the 1930s. It was a dramatic and easy way to take publicity photos of their stars. It was an easy setup and proved to be very dramatic. Read more.
I used a 300 watt daylight fluorescent bulb and a small 16″ square soft-box with one diffuser panel. (No flash, continuous light) Placed above the camera, pointed at the subject. Used a tripod.
Shutter Speed 1/160
50mm 1.4 lens
In Photoshop I posterized the background, and saturated the orange decals.