Monday, September 14, 2009

Kimberly Fattorini: Something Different

The more I shoot and retouch the more I look for something different. After shooting consecutively for several weeks straight I have finally had a little time to step back and reevaluate my style and finished products. I find that I am more and more lured by the simple enigma of raw emotion captured on flim/digital than the complicated setups and prop-intensive shoots that I could be doing. Of course even in simplicity, there is a lot going on in my setup and final product that may elude the untrained eye. Which is why I make sure to go over in detail all the thoughts/processes that I go through to create the final product, here.

Here are the beginning thoughts when I see this picture. First off the focus is off. It's focused on her shoulder. At f/7.1 it's not THAT noticeable but at 1:1 you can see it's not tack sharp on the face. Secondly, I blew the highlights on the center of the highlight on the cheek. It's not that big of a deal since it's a highlight anyway, but you're not supposed to blow your highlights. I simply overexposed and/or Kim stepped a tad closer to the light. Anyway it's still my fault.

Now onto the good stuff. Blonde hair, green eyes, incredible physical proportions, what's not to like about Kimberly Fattorini? In this shot, I've only given you a taste of what's to come as far as her physical assets are concerned. This is only the second shoot that I've done with a blonde and Kim's light but flawless complexion makes for easy retouching with such a soft skin texture that is like butter.

This is the first time with the beige background. Yeah. Beige. I guess my idea of beige has been wrong all this time. Whatever this color background is, I like it! Such perfect match with Kim's hair and skin.

With the setup of this shot, I was really going for something commercial that you'd see in a magazine, I spent a lot of time putting the kicker/rim lights in the right place to make sure they were symmetrical and would create the right highlights when Kim looked directly into the lens. That said, I never limit the models to pose in a certain way because freedom of expression is what my shots are all about. I try and give the models as many degrees of freedom of movement as possible. But the hairlights are finicky and sometimes the models have to stay within a certain area of confinement. Fortunately blonde lights well and the hairlight was spot on.

Retouching was pretty simple. No blur. No real touching of highlights and shadows. Left most of it as is. I cropped for 4:5 ratio instead of the original 4:6 ratio. I find the 4:5 is better for headshots and what not.

Here's the setup:

Camera info: D3, 24-70mm f/2.8, 1/160th, f/7.1, ISO200.

Strobist info: 1 AB800 in barndoors camera left for rim/kicker. 1 SB-800 camera right for kicker/rim (gelled with 1/8 CTO to match color temp of AB800). 1 AB800 in 20 degree gridspot camera high (above Kim's head shooting back into camera) as hair light. One SB-800 on stand between Kim and the background. Lastly, the tried and true AB800 in beauty dish (can't remember if gridded or not, probably was gridded) as main light just above the camera.

Model/wardrobe: Kim Fattorini

Makeup: Alyssa Fong

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