Last week I shared with you my saga in finding a suitable model and asked you pick your favorite image (color or BW) of Jodi. If you missed last week's post, check it out. Now, I happen to know which one Jodi prefers, but I'll save that for the end. Today I thought I would share with you my simple set up using one main light and an external flash. Like I said, I don't shoot a ton of studio work, but when I do I really enjoy it. I shot Jodi's session using a Canon 5D Mark II tethered to my computer with a 16foot USB cable. This was the first time I had shot tethered using Lightroom 3.0, and I'll tell ya it was impressive. The ease of set up was nice and being able to get instant feedback on the shots was incredibly helpful. If you're not familiar with tethered shooting then stay tuned because in the coming weeks I plan on giving you a little demo.
Here's a quick and dirty diagram of the studio set-up. We shot the entire session using one light with a medium sized softbox attached and an external flash placed behind the couch with a pocket wizard attached. I decided early on that I wanted a warmer white balance so we took several test shots and created a custom white balance using an Expodisc.
Now some of you had mentioned that things were slightly blown out, and I don't deny it. The feedback was incredibly interesting and I enjoyed reading everyone's thoughts, but wanted to hold off on commenting until I got this post up. My initial pick was color but while I was screwing around with a few Lightroom presets I clicked on “green filter” which really brought her eyes but at the same time lightened the image quite a bit. I looked at them side by side in Lightroom's compare mode and then covered up one side (as was suggested by someone on the blog) and I was really drawn to the BW (even though it was hot…well, hot meaning slightly blown out because the other kind of hot with a distant cousin is not so hot). So instead of fixing the image or scrapping it, I decided to let it be and posted it as is. The feedback was great and while I don't feel that there is any one winner over the other, it would appear the color was everyone's favorite (based on comments). BUT, and this is what I love about photography because it's so subjective, Jodi's favorite image ended up being the black and white. “Just a little darker” is all she added, so I guess I'll be working the image a little more, but it was fun exercise and I appreciate all the input.
Here's the complete list of equipment I used and yes, some of these are affiliate links. Let me know if you have any questions.
3. Tethering Cable (super cheap alternative to Canon's cable)
4. ExpoDisc (great for setting custom white balance)
5. 24-70mm (my favorite all around lens)
6. 85mm (my favorite portrait lens)