Light is Everything!

Posts tagged “Photo Shoot



Every year, as a joke, I give up shaving for Lent. I follow the ancient fasting rules for real. But for years, much to the chagrin of my wife, family and friends, I grow a Lenten beard. Then I take a bunch of goofy photos in stages as shave it off. My life is small. 😎  But anyways, this is said beard for 2014.

I thought I would do a little BTS explaining of how I made this image. Here is the studio setup:

20140413-LentBeard2014-002First of all I’m in my garage. I’ve got a grey back drop permanently mounted to the ceiling. I got the idea for that setup from Jay P. Morgan’s vid. Check it out, it’s awesome! I received an old backdrop from a photographer friend who passed away. I painted it “Photo Grey,” a colour you can get at Home Hardware in Canada. But the colour didn’t matter for this shoot as a I changed it for the shot.

It’s helpful to think about lighting and photography in “zones.” They are like layers in photoshop. First of all, we’ll start with the subject. I had the idea for the shoot already conceived. Myself and my glorious Lenten beard right side in the frame, looking camera left. So for the key light, I’ve got a speed light gelled CTO with a Honl grid. Very narrow shaft of hard light. Oppositely, Ive got another SB with a snoot (a flash bender) with cold daylight hard light. This is a classic cross lighting setup adding 3 dimensionality and separation from the background. For the next layer,  for fill and to bring some detail into the beard, I setup my DIY Light Scrim and shot a 1/4 CTO gelled SB through that. It’s acting as a huge reflector and light source at the same time, filling the shadow zone. Once I was happy with that, I went to work on the background. I gelled a LumoPro 180 with a theatrical red gel. The red looked cool but it needed more. Being that this is a Lenten/Good Friday type photo, I decided a cross would be a nice addition. I didn’t really have a big random cross lying around so I quickly made one out of a paint stir stick (from the photo grey background project previously mentioned) and couple pieces of Gaffer tape. Looks legit to me! 🙂 I muddled with the light placement to get the right size and perspective of the cross “shadow” on the background. It’s essentially a spiritual gobo!

So there you have the BTS breakdown. A hard-light portrait, 4 light setup, 2 different zones of light, layered together for key, fill, kicker and background.  I edited the photo in Lightroom 5 and Nik software for the final grading and grunge look. Have a very blessed Holy Week & Easter season!

But He was pierced for our transgressions; He was crushed for our iniquities; upon Him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and by His wounds we are healed. ~ Isaiah 53:5


Go Riders! #GreyCup 2013

20131122-GoRiders-001Rider Pride, Nation Wide. That’s our motto and our mantra. From the moment of conception, all Saskatchewan residents are born Rider Fans. Some more crazy than others. To support our team headed to the 101st Grey Cup on Sunday, I wanted to do a little photo shoot. I had the idea in my mind and wanted to try out some cool lighting that is along the lines of Heisler-esque. I was stoked with how the interplay of colour took place in this image. I’ve included a BTS photo to explain how I made this shot come together.

20131122-BTSRiders-001Well, as you can see, it’s shot in my car hold. It’s a total of 4 lights. Black sheet background clamped onto some cupboard doors. The key light is an SB-600 in a soft box overhead via a C-Stand. It’s got 1/2 CTO on it which really makes this image. Two rim lights behind me on left and right. The camera left rim is pointing up at me and the right is coming down. It really chisels the outline with thick green theatrical gels on 2 LP180s. And the last light was a special for the banjo. The SB-900 was simply put on the floor in an Orbis ring light to circle the drum of the banjo. I couldn’t have made a light mod match a subject better! I had originally set it up as on axis fill but on the ground worked so much better and added to the overall dramatic feel. It was a fun way to spend an hour or so. 😎

So cheer on the Saskatchewan Roughriders to Grey Cup victory on Sunday! Green is the colour, football is the game!

Fight For Fonstad Foto Shoot x 5

Well, I was finally able to finish the edits from the Fight for Fonstad Foto Shoots. We promised the families who signed up a disc of 5 images. I’ve got a few more than 5 for everyone, but I didn’t want to post them all on my blog. That would be like ruining Christmas. 😉 So, I paired the collection down to 5 images to display here on the blog as a teaser preview (different from the ones I posted in the last entry). We had such a great time putting this event together and even more fun taking the pictures. All the families I was blessed to snap photos for were amazing and the kids were awesome little troopers. The wind was COLD despite the sunshine! So hats off to you all. 🙂

I am really happy with how the images turned out, especially because these were my very first official photo shoots ever. It was a great learning experience for me and working within a 20 minute window makes you appreciate the luxury of time you usually have to finesse the images. 😉 And again, I’m very thankful to my papa for coming down from Moose Jaw and helping me out, even if he would have rather taken pictures himself than hold the diffuser . . . heheheehhe…  I threw in 5 shots that he took of yours truly in action just to inflate my ego for kicks. 🙂

Fight For Fonstad! ~ Sneak Preview

 WOW! We had an incredible time today at the Fight For Fonstad Foto Shoots. We had 20 minutes to make as many images as we could for the people who donated to the cause. It was fast and furious photography to say the least. But what a whole lot of fun! We did have a sunny day, but it was horrendously windy. So I salute all of our little troopers who took of their coats for photos in the cold wind. Everyone did great and we absolutely had a making pictures. As I mentioned before, I had my dad assisting me, running the soft box,  the diffuser and the reflector, and even taking some occasional photos of me taking photos! heheeheh… 😉 It was a tremendous, tremendous day and I want to thank everyone who made this event a success and the other photographers making images at the same time as I was in Carnduff & Oxbow. Hats off to you ladies! Can’t wait to see the pics.

This a sneak peak of the images of the day. I haven’t had time to go through them all yet, but I grabbed a few bright and shiny ones from the pile. 😉