Monday, January 07, 2008

vivian

vivian100mm 1/640 sec @f3.5 ISO 640
Visited some friends yesterday and we spent an enjoyable afternoon chasing their not-quite one-year old around the house to get some pictures. Kids are such a challenging photographic subject but so much fun. Get down low, play around, shoot tons and hope. Going for shallow depth of field with such a fast moving subject makes it even more of a challenge to get some with just the right focus. I did get a few okay shots out of the 400+ that I took.
This one here is my favourite. I used some almost out-of-focus palm fronds as a bit of a framing element behind her head and I really like the way the leaves mirror the shapes of her eyelashes and also mirror the way her hair is falling over her forehead. She is looking upwards towards a bright, cloudy sky that has filled her face and eyes with bright, even, beautiful light. Also got to play with a new toy that Amanda got me for Christmas. I was lucky enough to get a Canon ST-E2 flash trigger. This way I can set up a strobe and have the camera communicate and control it, using through the lens exposure metering to control the flash power level. Quite different from the manual control of a pocket wizard and really helped out shooting indoors with such a fast moving subject. I just pointed the flash towards a white wall and used it as a room-sized softbox for all the shooting I did. The ST-E2 did well, triggering the flash every time, even when the camera and sensors were nowhere near pointing towards each other. Very happy with it. Here's an example of one mostly lit by the flash, mixing well with the window light behind her.
100mm 1/160sec @ f2.8 ISO 400
In the comments, Holly asked That flash device sounds intriguing...what did you do with the flash while you were shooting? Was it on a light stand or something? (how did you get it to bounce where you wanted?) I had the flash on the small stand that it comes with. This is basically a foot that lets the unit stand on a table or the floor. All I did then was swivel the head to point at a wall, with the IR sensor turned to face roughly towards the room/camera. The biggest problem was stopping Vivian crawling straight towards the flash to find out what it was.

4 comments:

Steve said...

I enjoyed both of those shots. Good to see some children as subjects out of you. Did you bring you noses for this one? That's one way to get them to look at you strangely. Nice work.

Gordon said...

nope, no noses this time around. Just my own funny face.

Karen said...

Gordon, I am so glad to see that you are blogging again. I really missed it. Looking forward to the book (s) when they come out.

Holly said...

Great work Gordon! I should have guessed that was the 100mm macro lens when I saw it on flickr...I just LOVE that lens for portraiture. (especially children)

That flash device sounds intriguing...what did you do with the flash while you were shooting? Was it on a light stand or something? (how did you get it to bounce where you wanted?)