How I took it.... Kimberly Kester - Redding CA Photographer
Sorry for the long blog silence, the Image Upload button went away from my blog screen for a while, so I couldn't upload any photos. Apparently it's fixed now (duh, lol) so I thought I'd share one of my favorite shots from a recent session. There wasn't a lot of light in the house at all & since I absolutely hate flash for portraits, I decided to take more of a Sue Bryce (An amazing New Zealand Glamour Photographer) approach to solve my problem. I didn't have any of her white boards to bounce back onto her face, so I used a silver reflector to get the light in her eyes & face. The photo above was taken in the living room on a love seat, you can see the light on her hair from the small window that was behind her. I think it turned out beautifully & so did this first full attempt of "Chin forward & down" along with "Connection". Not sure if the hand below is considered "The Claw" & the one below that is "The Club", they're borderline to me, lol, so I'm going to do that better as well. I did see the difference with her eyes being slightly larger when her chin went forward & down but I discovered what I didn't do in this shot, so it's not perfect to me, so I will be going back to do it again, to do it right. This time I will have a second set of hands (hopefully a light stand adapter) to hold a white board exactly where I want it, or I'm going to make the big white boards Sue uses (to me, there's no sense going back unless I have something better to help me with the light, then I can concentrate on the hand pose. All I know is, I love what I'm doing right now & so happy for those friends in my life, like this incredible woman, that let me use my new techniques on them, until I get them perfect. So glad she loves (...they love) it just as much, Thank you!
3 Photos above, Manual mode, f-stop 1.4 (I needed the most light as possible & was willing to go with a little blur on her face if needed, shutter speed 1/80 (she wasn't moving & I had my arm pretty stable to go one stop slower, to get the shot without my shaky hand affecting it (I don't usually go below 1-125), & ISO 500 (I needed to brighten the entire scene, probably should have gone higher). I moved my focus point to her eyes & tried to have both eyes at the same plane away from the camera, so they would both be the sharpest in the scene.
Photo below was taken in a bedroom with a bigger window & better light source, f-stop 1.6 (I still wanted to blur the background a lot & needed that light), shutter speed 1/100 (my hand wasn't as stable), ISO 400 (the scene was already brighter so I didn't need to go as high as living room shots. I had the reflector in the room leaning again a dresser, it only had the window behind her to get any light & none was hitting the reflector, the side window light was enough. (The room had a small high window on the other side of her feet & a bigger brighter window to my right.) I love all the photos, I have to start somewhere right.
GEAR I USED (I will have to post photos of my gear soon) & GEAR I WANT: I used a huge round reflector ("Promaster" 5 in 1 from my local camera store, I had it on the silver side, it wasn't as soft as I wanted it but it would do until I make the reflectors I really want or until I get the holder adapter for the light stand. I used my 50mm 1.4 lens so I could get as much light as possible & this was the best lens for this situation, I hope to use my 24-70 2.8 lens as soon as I make my new reflectors, that's one of my favorite lenses for portraits. I can't wait to buy the reflector holder adapter for holding my existing reflector (also to hold my smaller white foam boards), can't wait to make my big reflectors / background boards (including painting them) & get my sheer chiffon to cover & soften the window light, they will make a world of difference in my more intimate indoor portrait photos. I don't have a big budget & I want to learn by having the story about the person, not a prop or expensive gear (I want to make the best of what I have available), I think that's why I love Sue Bryces style of lighting &, her style of photos. My first 4 years of owning a camera have been without her, now my photos won't be the same. I have to Thank CreativeLive.com, for introducing me to her. If you haven't visited their site & watched their free workshops (you can purchase previous workshops as well), you don't what you're missing, it will change your life if you're a self taught perfectionist like me, (I'm still trying to learn what I want to do with my photography, I need to classify myself as a specific style of photographer, just not sure what direction I want to go in, I"m still learning that, I think this will be the year I decide). CreativeLives workshops cover so many different styles of photography as well as editing & camera setting lessons. It has improved & fine tuned my photography this past year, it will do the same for you.
I can't wait for my next session with beautiful Miss C.