Under the faint light, tired eyes wander into the woods looking for the lost path. Damp and cold air blowing between trees, clenches the teeth. In the moment of darkness, light from the Magic Lantern holds the courage to guide the hope.
As always the picture has a story behind the single magic click when everything falls in the right place. By far this was the fastest session to get the picture as imagined but there was a lot of ground work had to be done before the session. The inspiration started about 3months back with a Bollywood song and we started to lookout for the appropriate things to get the picture right. First idea was to have a pottery with lantern in the frame, but as we searched for pottery in the Chicagoland with less luck, we had to abandon the pottery from the picture and improvise the setup to keep it complete. Then we started looking into the gray backdrops and gels to make the scene more dramatic. And to add even more drama, the creepers were perfect with subtle greenery.
Makeup, hairstyle and dressing took almost half the days effort to get set for the model. In the mean time we were experimenting with the setup in the studio. First thing to decide was the lens for the scene - 85mm F1.2 prime on 5DMKII. In the gray backdrop, the setup started with a beauty dish to adjust the light as a primary source. Then a reflector was used to fill the light in the shadows. Next the backdrop light was adjusted for angle and intensity with different gels - blue, red, yellow. The creepers needed to be positioned in such a way that the light had to be diffused slightly over them. Finally the blower was adjusted to the hair to push them behind the ears. To complement the whole studio setup, the model was impressive with her hair style, makeup adjusting the tone and complexion of the skin and choice of colors for the dressing. At the end it was easy, as it was a matter of positioning in the model and trying different poses with a blower to get the picture right.
In the past most of the time was spent struggling with the studio light during the session. But with the preparation ahead of time, it makes it a lot easier during the session.
One of best things about shooting in the studio is controlled light. You can move your strobes around and can change the lighting on your subject. The picture below was shot with a soft box on the right and a reflector on the left.
Gear: Canon 5D Mark ii, 85 mm 1.2
This next picture was shot with a fill light on the left instead of a reflector. The setup can be seen below.
It's a cloudy day. And most of the times the photos are going to look dull unless you use some kind of additional lighting or reflection. But when there is snow it's different. The snow on the ground and surroundings act as a reflector to enhance light on your subject. It gives a perfect glow on your subject. On the flip side it is really cold. We have a very limited time to take photos during this weather. The best part is it is relatively warmer when it is actually snowing.
That is how these photo was taken. We know it is going to snow based on the weather. Planned the photo ahead so we don't have to try different things after going in to the cold.
Gear: Canon 5D Mark ii, 85 1.2 @ f1.2