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Thread: Steph - a portrait of a work colleague. C&C welcome

  1. #1

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    Steph - a portrait of a work colleague. C&C welcome

    This is a portrait of a work colleague I have taken using the following setup:

    Nikon D5100 and 70-300mm VR handheld at 112mm. SB700 flash unit fitted with a Lastolite EzyBox SpeedLite held on a Custom Brackets Folding S Bracket. There was also a mix of natural light and florescent lighting. A muslin backdrop was set up behind Steph. I had Steph turn his body slightly and look at the camera. I asked Steph to bring his face forward slightly to tighten his under chin area. Minor colour correction in Capture NX 2.

    Steph - a portrait of a work colleague. C&C welcome

    This is the first time I have used the SB700, CB bracket and EzyBox arrangement.

    Your comments and critiques are most welcome. You are also welcome to make adjustments to this image to illustrate any suggestions. Thanks.

  2. #2
    travis4567's Avatar
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    Re: Steph - a portrait of a work colleague. C&C welcome

    The lighting is nice Barry. The background is distracting. Try placing your subject further away from the background to throw it out of focus.

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    Re: Steph - a portrait of a work colleague. C&C welcome

    Barry, as Travis has mentioned the background is distracting to me also.

    Grahame

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    Re: Steph - a portrait of a work colleague. C&C welcome

    Thank you kindly Travis and Grahame for that helpful feedback.

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    Re: Steph - a portrait of a work colleague. C&C welcome

    Barry, I think you've done a pretty good job overall, and I don't find the background as distracting as the other two gents. What I do find a little distracting is the lack of sharp focus on the eyes. I thought it was maybe my screen, so I opened the image on my wife's computer, and it was the same.

    Steph obviously isn't moving, so I wonder if you shook a little with that long lens? Other than that, I like the pose, and the lighting.

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    Re: Steph - a portrait of a work colleague. C&C welcome

    Thank you very much Andrew. I will be careful to focus on the eyes as this is not something I concentrated on this time. Thank you.

    Edit for spelling
    Last edited by Snowy55; 19th September 2013 at 06:04 AM.

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    Shadowman's Avatar
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    Re: Steph - a portrait of a work colleague. C&C welcome

    Very nice. Slight tilt to the head to remove right ear as a thought.

  8. #8

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    Re: Steph - a portrait of a work colleague. C&C welcome

    Thank you John

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    Re: Steph - a portrait of a work colleague. C&C welcome

    Hi Barry,

    Very professional looking portrait. Your blending of your flash with the ambient light is spot on.

    I concur with Andrew and John. The background is classic.
    (Although I personally prefer a plain white/dark background. )
    Perhaps you can check out the Portrait tutorial by Colin here on CiC.
    For me, too sharp eyes for men, perhaps, may make them look "shrewd/wise guys".
    John's idea about the ears is reasonable. Looks unbalanced considering it's a "mug shot" pose. Maybe tilt to the side so the viewer subconsciously accepts, obviously because of the partial side view, only one ear can be visible. Not "searching" for the other ear if the viewer perceives it's a straight frontal shot.

    If you want to lessen his "double chins", maybe your cam can be a little higher so it doesn't catch them. And a higher cam shot will make his outline jaw look more manly.

    Just me.

    Hope this helps.


    Thanks

  10. #10
    dubaiphil's Avatar
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    Re: Steph - a portrait of a work colleague. C&C welcome

    You're shooting at f4.8 and 1/60th.

    1/60th isn't an issue obviously as you're using flash, but f4.8 is wide open at that focal length. I'd stop down to f8, move the subject away from the background for physical as well as lighting separation, increase your flash power and away you go.

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    Digital's Avatar
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    Re: Steph - a portrait of a work colleague. C&C welcome

    Overall I believe that this photo is a nice one. I do agree about the focus, and ear.
    My suggestion would be use a tripod for this type of shot.


    Bruce

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    rpcrowe's Avatar
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    Re: Steph - a portrait of a work colleague. C&C welcome

    Very decent portrait but, with the shape of Steph's face; I would think that short lighting might have been more flattering.

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    Re: Steph - a portrait of a work colleague. C&C welcome

    Nice natural balance of light in this. Maybe the background could be less focused but I don't think that's really an issue with this shot. I didn't even notice the ear until somebody mentioned it - but now I've noticed it it is a little disconcerting. All in all a very pleasant shot. I agree with the lighting comment, depends on the purpose of the image I guess but maybe while you had Steph captive and everything set up you could have experimented by moving the light around, changing the mix of natural to flash and so on. The eyes seem adequately sharp to me by the way.

  14. #14

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    Re: Steph - a portrait of a work colleague. C&C welcome

    Victor - Thank you very much. Very useful feedback.

    Phil, That you kindly. I will take more use of the focal length next time and distance the background. He was rather close to it.

    Bruce, thank you. I have a good tripod so should use it.

    Richard, Thank you. Can you explain what short lighting is please? I am not familiar with that term.

    Paul, Thank you I now notice the ear also. I shall do as you suggest.

    Thank you everyone for your kind comments and critiques which have been very educational and give me food for thought. It is really appreciated.

  15. #15
    Digital's Avatar
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    Re: Steph - a portrait of a work colleague. C&C welcome

    Not to upstage Richard. Short lighting is lighting the side of the face turned AWAY from the camera. Broad lighting is lighting the side of the face turned TOWARDS the camera.
    All you portrait studio CiC members please correct me if I am incorrect.


    Bruce

  16. #16

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    Re: Steph - a portrait of a work colleague. C&C welcome

    Thank you very much Bruce. I had worked through the Portrait lessons but clearly need to do a refresher.

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