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Saturday, December 19, 2009

The Dark Session

The use of artificial light is, as the followers of this blog know, very high on my list. I got absolutely hooked by the use of strobes, speed lights and studio light, especially after becoming a follower of the Strobist community myself.

The problem is to find models, I mean, patient people who don’t mind being around with an obsessed guy who take strange pictures of them. Randomly, a member of the family gets involved in the task. Poor soul, he knows when we start but never knows when it all finish. This time it was my nephew’s time. 18 years old, rock music lover and with a light beard showing in his chin, perfectly matched with a dark hooded sweater.

We did the session inside a house in construction. We started close to sunset and finished when it was dark and I had to work my way through things with a portable lamp. Three lights: two Metz and one Nikon SB800. Elinchrom Skyport triggers. Manfrotto Nano Stands, translucent umbrella and a Honlphoto grid. These are my tools, together with the Nikon D90 and the 18-200VR lens.

We worked around different kind of situations, mostly based around the idea of the dark warrior or something alike. One light was taking care of the background, both from a bare Metz 48 or through a translucent umbrella. The kicker light, that for me somehow is the main light, or at least the one that takes care of giving the image “that feeling”, is on camera left coming from a SB800 gelled blue or red with a Honlphoto grid. On camera right we have a Metz 58 through a translucent umbrella.

The result is mixed. There’s so much to learn about lights and their fine tuning that I can’t expect major improvement overnight, yet a couple of these images make me happy and proud. The most disappointing is probably the third one, where the light coming from the umbrella is too strong and kills a bit of the atmosphere.

If you need any info about the setup don’t hesitate to contact me.

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