Saturday, January 26, 2008

jessa

jessa

85mm 1/250s @ f1.8, ISO 1250
This is Jessa, from the Strobist get together in Austin. We found what probably looked like the least appealing end of the corridor that we had been shooting in, for this shot. I think Kirk wanted us to see what you can make, from essentially nothing. There was no interesting light - other than the tungsten light fittings in the hall. No ambient light in the corner we'd picked either. We sat down in the middle of the corridor and I put my canon 580EX flash on the floor, pointing to the wall on my right. Tried a few shots like that. Then we put a large silver reflector on the floor, that you can see in the catchlights in her eyes. The flash was aimed up towards the corner of the wall/ ceiling and fired in TTL mode. I composed the shot to use some of the lighting elements in the background to provide a frame and just fired a few shots. This was my favourite. I had originally planned to take it to black and white, but after doing that, I partially resaturated it to bring it up to this muted, half colour half black and white palette. I've used this technique quite often when I try black and white images. Often I like the feel that you get - a uniquely digital palette, but not overly obvious or too saturated. Subtle colour, turned down but still part of the composition. It seems to work particularly well for high ISO shots so that the noise in the image adds a subtle grain, particularly in the out of focus regions. Holly asked How are you using your flash off camera? I got a Canon ST-E2 infrared flash controller for Christmas, so I've been playing around with that. It means I can use TTL flash triggering, which seems to be a mixed blessing. Easy to get good exposures, but it seems you can't use it to manually trigger the flash at a given, repeatable power output. I've also got pocket wizards, which have a much longer range but no TTL capability. I'm working on learning how to use both more effectively.

3 comments:

Holly said...

Oh, I like this one a lot Gordon! Great focus on the eyes, I like the angle it's shot at and the out-of-focus lights in the background. Great catch lights with the silver reflector on the ground too. How are you using your flash off camera? (what equipment)

Steve said...

very nice shot Gordon. thanks for the details in the post. how do you find out about all these meetups?

Gordon said...

hey Steve, thanks for being here.

I heard about the meet-ups by joining local flickr groups. There's a strobist group for Austin, as well as a general Austin group. Some of the general group happened to be at the strobist meeting and mentioned they were getting together. It sort of snowballed from there.