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Thread: Buster

  1. #1
    Loose Canon's Avatar
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    Buster

    This is Buster!

    He is our Cairn Terr(orist)ier and a rescue! Though I’m still not sure if we rescued him or he took us by siege!

    He has been down in the dumps ever since I shot his big sister Miss Kellie. He felt like he should have a formal portrait done of him too. So today I made that happen for him.

    Buster was shot with three lights. One overhead, manual at 1/64th power wearing a 20* grid, a flagged fill reflected off of a piece of foam board on manual at 1/16th power and a second fill on a camera bracket and wearing a fong-o-sphere set on ttl with a -2 compensation. Shot with a 24-105mmf/4L racked out to 105mm, f/5.6, at X sync of 1/200 and cropped to a 5:4 ratio on a full frame camera body.

    I used the old white towel/gray card trick to set exposure/white balance.

    No lights fired @ 1/200 sec.
    Buster

    Key light only
    Buster

    Fill light fired off the reflector (Notice the blown highlights at the bottom corner of the towel)
    Buster

    Camera light only
    Buster

    All lights fired
    Buster

    The Set (shot at 1.6 sec shutter to allow ambient, 24mm, and all lights fired)
    Buster

    The Set (shot at 1/200 sec shutter, 24mm, and all lights fired)
    Buster

    And this is Buster
    Buster

    Buster knows I’m getting used to a full frame and he’s wondering if I should have stopped down a bit for DoF purposes, but he kind of likes it just the same. He wants me to keep that in mind for future reference though.

    Buster Roo would like me to thank you all for any help you would like to give. He knows I need all I can get!

  2. #2
    jeeperman's Avatar
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    Re: Buster

    Well done, Terry. I am sure Buster will cherish a print just above his bed for years.

  3. #3
    Loose Canon's Avatar
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    Re: Buster

    Thank you, Paul.

    Buster says I have to get a print bigger than Kellie's!

  4. #4
    Loose Canon's Avatar
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    Re: Buster

    Hi Terry!

    Pretty decent shot of your pup. Well for you anyway.

    But look man, do think you may have burned his right (camera left) paw a little too much? Probably happened when you burned his leg and then added a vignette making the accumulated effect a little too much.

    Of all the bone-headed moves I have seen you make, this really takes the cake! Now see if you can get that fixed before you archive it, okay?

  5. #5
    Loose Canon's Avatar
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    Re: Buster

    Hi Terry!

    Good eye there Brother! I apologize for my continued bone-headedness!

    I'll get that fixed tout de suite!

  6. #6
    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
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    Re: Buster

    Terry,

    Talking to yourself - now what's that the first sign of?

    Is that darkened area towards his rump caused by the lay of his fur and the angle of the illumination or the shadow of an (out of shot) arm from the top light?

    Cheers,

  7. #7

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    Re: Buster

    Beautiful shot Terry, and thanks for including the setup.

    Buster's burnt leg doesn't bother me too much, but like Dave I wonder about the shaded area on his rump. The lighting on his face and his expression is wonderful. Buster should be proud

    Wendy

  8. #8
    Loose Canon's Avatar
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    Re: Buster

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Humphries View Post
    Terry,

    Talking to yourself - now what's that the first sign of?
    Actually Dave, I think that is the second sign! I don't care to even comment on the first!

    I appreciate you and Wendy commenting. The dark part of his rump really shouldn't be a shadow from the light stand. I have a theory on it, which is probably wrong. So I'll bounce it out there anyway.

    I think it is to do with lighting with a grid. I think it could possibly be light fall off and his hind quarter picked up the reflection due to its angle. The hind quarter is "looking" back at the light. The reason I was using a grid was because I was actually going for some fall off. I have a couple of other shots from the shoot where that hind quarter was tucked in a little more and the fall off was more consistent and showed no irregularity. This is the shot Buster's Mama liked.

    At this point, without re-shooting, while I am correcting the scorched leg I could try a little dodging and burning in the hind quarter to help lessen the effect. And I think that is exactly what I am going to do while I am talking to myself! If I were to re-shoot it, I am guessing I would have to more evenly light his entire length. The fall off does seem a little abrupt now that you guys mention it. And I appreciate that you did.

    Quote Originally Posted by ScoutR View Post
    Buster should be proud
    Thanks Wendy! He now thinks he is Rin Tin Tin or someone! There will be no living with him now!
    Last edited by Loose Canon; 30th December 2012 at 08:28 PM.

  9. #9
    Loose Canon's Avatar
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    Re: Buster

    Okay BusterÖ

    You are one lucky pup that you (I) have these good folks who know what they are doing and can attempt to get me past my bone-headedness!

    Iím doing my level best to get it right for you! To the point of obsession!

    Letís see if anyone might think this is an improvement! I wanted to lessen, rather than eliminate the shadow. At least for now! I gave you a couple of additional tweaks as well!

    Just as an aside, I usually like to dodge and burn on a 50% gray layer so in case I go over the top I can just toss the layer and have another go at it!

    Buster

  10. #10
    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
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    Re: Buster

    That's definitely better Terry

  11. #11
    Loose Canon's Avatar
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    Re: Buster

    Thank you Dave. You think it is enough?

    I appreciate your eye, sir.
    Last edited by Loose Canon; 30th December 2012 at 09:55 PM.

  12. #12
    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
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    Re: Buster

    Quote Originally Posted by Loose Canon View Post
    You think it is enough?
    For this yes.

    The very "top lighty" look is actually something we try to avoid with human portraits.

    I appreciate animals are different; fur or feathers instead of skin, so there's no subtle tonal variations like we see across say, human cheeks, etc.

    I just don't have enough practical experience shooting either people or pets. Richard does and he tends to use the "top lighty" set up on his doggy shots too, so there must be a good reason.

    I guess in this case, I'm just not understanding the need for the grid, that's all - but that says more about my ignorance, than your set up/technique.

    For example, if that were a human in a similar pose, would you expect the more distant half of their body to be lit with that much less intensity?

    Cheers,

  13. #13
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    Re: Buster

    Hi Terry,
    just wanted to drop in and say I like this shot and thanks for sharing the setup. This, I'm sure will help a lot of members.
    Cheers
    John

  14. #14
    Loose Canon's Avatar
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    Re: Buster

    Hi John!

    Thank you for stopping by and saying, sir.

    I appreciate you taking the time.

  15. #15
    Loose Canon's Avatar
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    Re: Buster

    Very good points Dave.

    If I may mention my thought process (or lack thereof) on this setup and maybe continue the dialog?

    I wanted to try a version of “clamshell” lighting on the pup. A “glam” lighting technique actually used on humans (mostly females) and utilizes a top key. I have found, mostly by mistake, that I liked the effect it had on the silver (or more correctly a zillion shades of gray) coats my dogs have. I process them with very little, if any additional contrast because I think it compliments their silver fur.

    Where I think I went wrong, and as you and Wendy pointed out, was that Buster had extra length behind his face that I failed to account for in my lighting. Hence the shadow. I may have brought my key a little more forward and angled it back a little more toward the background. But I would have to watch throwing a shadow of his head into what is behind it. Maybe one thing I could have done is just to try a different zoom on my key and without a grid. Problem with doggies (or at least mine) is that you never know how they are going to react on stage or how long they are going to put up with it! I have pretty much jack experience in shooting puppies!

    Shooting human women there is not a foot and a half of tail end behind her head and as you pointed out I must have missed that fact. I (and again by mistake) found that I liked a hard light on this pup’s coat. I didn’t really want a lot of spill all over the set so I went with a grid to try to control that. Or so my thinking went.

    Definitely some food for thought. And this says more about your experience/understanding than you are admitting.

    And don’t think for one minute that I don’t appreciate that Dave.

  16. #16

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    Re: Buster

    I know squat about studio lighting etc. so will confine my comments to say that Buster is a cool looking dog. Very knowing look in those eyes. Nice detail on his eyes and face and IMO the OOF haunches simply help focus attention on those pretty eyes. Nicely done.

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