As I have had the opportunity to work with children from a dance academy It has also enabled me to shoot images from behind the scenes, I was asked to photograph the preparation process of one of the dancers getting ready, she wanted make up shots and shots in her dress, these images were taken for the purpose of putting into an album for the dancer herself.
I took images from all angles whilst she was getting her hair done, although working inside I was able to use natural light that cascaded in through the large windows of their kitchen, I asked to position her in the direction of the light to enable me to be able to get the most flattering light onto the subject. this gave me real detail in the images meaning I used a small iso of just 100 using a aperture of f5.6 which my camera could go to I took the shots.
I made sure to capture both images of her looking directly into the camera as well as more candid images while she wasn’t looking directly into the camera.
Using a large white card I placed this just below my subject in some face shots to reflect some of the bright light onto her face, this gave her an all round glow lighting up her face from both the direction of the natural light and the reflection from the card, this eliminated any harsh shadows and gave a softer image.
I also took images of her mum and grandma helping her with make up and getting into her dress, again using the natural light available as well as bouncing the light with the use of the large white card, this give my image an all round light source so I didn’t create too many shadows in places that arm/legs were in the image.
After the getting ready images were taken we ventured outside using the trees and fallen leaves available as a back drop, giving the images a nice background of colours, I focused in to the eyes of my subject making sure she was correctly in focus, facing her face towards where the light was coming from I then took shots, fitting her in the full screen with just a hint of the background, making her the visual focus of the image, I got her to do some spins and got her giggling in the images and managed to capture shots from all angles, giving the client a variety of images, this way she was able to get a range of images rather than a set of the same pose, I feel this is important when providing a portfolio of images as it shows creativity, it also gives the client an opportunity to choose the image best suited to them, rather than having just the option of a standard face on image.
I found working outdoors gave me room to experiment, the light available at mid day was less harsh but still bright enough to create some nicely lit scenes, highlighting the subject correctly and providing no shadows which is what I was hoping for.
Finding the correct background wasn’t easy as we had to move away from parked cars and bins in the background but by choosing to place my subject in front of available space near the trees I was able to capture images that suited my clients needs, will little processing needed.
After the shoot I went onto editing my images ready for printing;
I first edited all the images to provide the best colour and exposure using the levels I made sure that the images were correctly balanced, One image I found had slight camera shake, to over come this I applied the sake reduction tool, this defined my image and reduced the visible camera shake in the image, from here I then chose to use the hus/saturation tool to enhance some colours in the image, choosing blues to brighten the dress, this lifted the colours in the image and really made them stand out.
Finally as the client had requested I then went on to create a ‘colour pop’ image, she wanted her daughter to be in colour with a black and white background, to get this effect I changed the image into black and white creating another layer and then using the eraser tool carefully went around both the subject and her dress bringing back the colour in just the requested areas.
Personally ‘colour popping’ Is not something I like in my images, but as it was requested it gave me an opportunity to try something new and experiment in creating a new style.
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