Saturday, September 25, 2010

No I did not liquify... and about the box...

Margaux Elite Model Management. H3DII-31/HC-80. 1/500th f/9.5 ISO100 @80mm.

Yes, those legs are real. No, I did not liquify. Look at the other ones of her. That's just how her legs are.

Yes, she's really thin. No, she's not anorexic. I watched her scarf down 2 slices of pizza... although she did disappear into the bathroom for a long time afterwards. By the way, that's a joke. The girl eats just fine.

I originally made this pic in monochrome. Interestingly, it looks better in color. I don't know why. But it does. Fortunately I didn't lock myself into black and white. Sometimes I do. This time I didn't.

I actually think that we'll see some return to color. I've been at "the drawing board" really looking at black and white tonality, traditional film's tonal responses to light, and taking a hard look at my own B&W conversions. Needless to say, I'm in need of a little change. The last 4 out of 5 pictures uploaded to flickr have been in color. The previous 10 before that were B&W. But this isn't the end of the learning process, it's just the beginning of the plateau during which I exercise what I've learned and see if I can apply these techniques to acquire consistent results. We'll see how that goes :)

I will take this opportunity to talk a little about the box. I think the initial results were acceptable. LOL. Who uses words like "acceptable" outside of white-collared-shirt-and-tie situations to describe results? Most of you have probably already seen this but I'll use this image as an example:

Margaux Elite Model Management. H3DII-31/HC-80. 1/500th f/8.0 ISO100 @80mm.

So let's talk challenges. I'm used to moving around. But you can't move around with a geometric object without distorting the perspectives on said geometric object. Lines get bent, distortion happens. It *will* ruin the symmetry of the object. It *can* ruin the purpose of the object.

I made the box because I like lines, symmetry, structure, and geometry. I also like white. That's why it's a white box. I'm guessing I'll have to tripod the H3D. The only problem is the H3D has 1 focus point... and it's in the middle. How will I focus-recompose? I can't. I'll have to set the focus to where I think the model should be and set a long depth of field. We'll see.

Oh and it was supposed to be a cube. But
I failed at that. Which brings to mind the second challenge. It's not 1:1 aspect ratio (6x6 if you're a MF film shooter). Which means when I crop, I can't crop square. What I've found is that it crops better 6x7 HOWEVER this will either shorten the sides (which means the model can't stretch width-wise all the way like touch both sides of the box at the same time), or leave too much head room. The box is permanently "non-square". The stripped screws and lack of carpentry skills ensure that no future modifications to this box will be possible. So I'll have to figure an alternative solution to cropping the box pics. At this point, I'm thinking a custom crop might be the only solution... dunno yet though.

But do I ever know anything for certain. Rarely :)


  1. Both of these images are rad! I'm glad I got to see you use the box after all that hard work you put into it!

    I noticed you synced at 1/500th on your Hassy. What is the max sync on it anyways?

  2. 1/800th max sync.

    But the flash duration on the White Lighting at full power is something like 1/300th of a second.

    I compromised ;) I don't use full power in the studio on the White Lightning x3200 anyway.


  3. I've always admired your lighting style as seen in the image at the top among many others. I'd love to know your lighting setup on the shot above. By the way, the model is fantastic as is your work.



  4. Hi Wil,

    I don't think I did anything spectacular. The first shot was a single softbox and the second shot was a single gridded beauty dish.

  5. Thanks Charles. I can certainly see the large softbox for the first shot in effect from the camera left and the way the shadow falls. However, it would also seem that there may be a second light on the camera right creating a rim light along the model's arms and abdomen.

    Good job.

  6. Oh yeah. I forgot about that light! LOL! I think it's a barn doored b800?