Monday, December 12, 2011
I have seen some cool images of guys putting their lights within the frame and for this reason I decided to try the same in one of my studio shots. What I wanted to reply, in a way more reduced scale, were the stadium or stage lights, all pointed to the subject that is the center of attention.
To achieve that I had to work on a table longer than usual and using a wider lens, otherwise I would have either missed the two SB800 that you can see in the frame, or too close to the subject with serious problems, at least for me, to control the light. In my first attempts I only used the two visible light, but even though the lure is translucent I was missing a good deal of light on it. After several try with reflectors I had to pick up a third light, Metz 58, and use it at its lowest power with a tight zoom and a grid to make the Sculpo pop up.
The result is in front of your eyes, I love the lights in the background even though I would have love them showing a "star" instead of the rectangular shape of the SB800, and I would have loved the product to be a bit bigger but I think I can work that out a bit.
If anybody has an idea of how to improve this kind of images please feel free to drop a comment either in the blog or in Flickr, I'd highly apreciate.
Wednesday, November 30, 2011
Friday, November 25, 2011
Tuesday, November 22, 2011
Tuesday, November 15, 2011
Thursday, November 10, 2011
First I made two copies of the shot (virtual copies in Lightroom) at + 1 1/2 EV and - 1 1/2 EV, then I opened them together with the original shot in Photomatix. Here I edited the blended image with a bit of a not too realistic processing and the result is in front of your nose. Brighter colors, and more details, something that pops out of the screen, almost 3D, but probably too unrealistic to be taken into consideration. Good fun though!
Saturday, October 22, 2011
Flowers make for beautiful and very patient subject for your studio photo sessions. They don't move and have that inner (and outer) beauty that just need a bit of sensibility to come out and fill the frame. Thing is that I’m not a flower photographer, at least not one of those that ravenously search fields and botanical gardens, I’m rather one of those that when there’s a flower at home grabs it and put it in front of the camera. I’m also the one who usually brings the floral gifts so at least I can pick those I think can make a nice subject too.
Saturday, October 15, 2011
Yesterday a friend showed me an image of a lure swimming in the water on a black background. This was some sort of relief because when I did my first test, I had to quit the idea of using a black background because reflections flare and light spills were everywhere. So yesterday, with renewed energies I set up my studio and the first thing I did, in addiction of putting my black vinyl background, was to cover 2 sides of the tank with black cardboard.
I also got rid of the large lights, any umbrella or softbox would send too much light out of control so I decided to go hard and small. One SB800 was set with its dome and the other with a Honlphoto Grid one of each of the narrow side of the tank, power settings changed a lot during the session so is hard to tell which has been the most commonly used. I also switched the main light from one speedlight to the other, again hard to tell some sort of rules.
Once everything was set the first test shots were suggesting a decently dark background that could be easily manipulated in Lightroom, giving me the proper black I needed. Now I needed to find a way to focus on the lures, so I put one in the middle of the tank, same distance from the two longest walls, and hoped for the best. I obviously took the focus with the lure under the water, I have read somewhere that the liquid element not only increase the magnification of the objects but also swift the focus point.
Since I was on my own I needed something that could help me moving the lures, for this reason I tied them to a thin fishing line of the length of the longest side, with a weight on the other end. I could pull the lure to one end of the tank, the weight would lift up to the opposite edge and once I released the lure the weight would pull it to the other side … gravity!
I made so many shots that my D7000 was smoking, well at least it was very hot and sometimes needed a break to process the files. The SB800 showed how good they are for the hard work, not a single complain, never stopped, always recycling fast and with just one set of batteries. Some intensive processing in Lightroom followed, I needed the blacks to be black, and the lures to be sharp and well exposed. It has sure been a challenging experience, I have made an unlimited number of mistakes and probably none of the images is really good, but it has been my first step, hopefully I’ll do it better next time.
Wednesday, October 12, 2011
Fishermen ... and friends! Small group portrait shot in Green Harbour, Massachussets, a photo by Nicola Zingarelli on Flickr.
This is one of those shots you keep in your library for a while, until you realize that is something you really like. I do love it, as simple as that, I think is really good, and even if is not humble or politically correct to say that you like something you have done, I don't care, I honestly believe is a good shot. It's got the colors, orange is a great to have in a photo, it's got the sunstar sneaking between two of the guys, which is, let me say it, way cool, and it's got a decent light on the subjectsagainst the backlit sunset. It took me a century to be able to focus on these guys because of the sun sneaking in, but I think it was 100% worth it. Figure this out, even my buddies were having fun !
Monday, October 10, 2011
Molix Vario lure shot in a tank with splashing water and two lights, a photo by Nicola Zingarelli on Flickr.
Yesterday, strongly pushed by my 7 years old daughter I finally filled up the fish tank and set my home studio. I really wanted to try to make the photos that I have seen done by other guys in Flickr, so I did. First mistake was to try using a black background, is my favorite but I soon discovered that with the set up I was using wouldn't work. The tank was reflecting everything like a mirror and couldn't get a decent transparent view of the glass. Off the black goes, in the white comes: problem solved.
Once I had everything settled I soon found myself looking around for something that would keep the front glass of the fish tank clean from the water drops. It is ridiculous because every time you drop the lure it would splash it again, but it felt more professional doing so.
I had two lights, both SB800 triggered with Nikon CLS; one on the left side through a transparent umbrella at the same height of the water surface, the other on camera right through another umbrella, facing down to the tank slightly angled to the background. The left speedlights was in charge of the main light and the right one would also take care of the background, trying to keep it as white as possible. Thinking it back, I believe that next time I will change this light setting, more in another post.
I tied a thin fluorocarbon trace to the upper section of a fishing rod and the lure on the other end, handed to my daughter and with the lure sitting in the middle of the tank I manually focused at that distance with a Nikkor 60mm f2.8 Micro and the D7000 on a tripod.
Then we started shooting, first with my daughter working the lure, until I decided to make a change, and put her at the shutter button, and me at the rod. This worked way better because I could tell her when to press the button and I could play the lure the way I knew it would have worked better.
We worked with 4 different lures, for at least a couple of hours, deleted at least 70% of the takes and saved the decent ones. Another good hour was needed in Lightroom to clean up things.
The result is in front of you, far from being perfect yet is a start, I have learn few important things and most of all, I have found another way to enjoy my studio work, which I love.
Tuesday, October 4, 2011
Friday, September 23, 2011
Costa Rica, Fisherman with a Broomtail Grouper (Mycteroperca xenarcha)lit with an SB800 off camera flash and edited in black and white
Costa Rica, Fisherman with a Broomtail Grouper (Mycteroperca xenarcha) lit with an SB800 off camera flash and edited in black and white, a photo by Nicola Zingarelli on Flickr.
Wednesday, September 21, 2011
Dubai, large yacht moored at the dock with the city behind it. Fake HDR, 3 exposures +2 and - 2ev, a photo by Nicola Zingarelli on Flickr.
This image has been sitting there for a couple of years now and when I saw it yesterday I thought it was sure worth a try. I edited in Lightroom and couldn't get where I wanted so I made a couple of virtual copies, at +2 and - 2ev and tone mapped them in Photomatix. I wanted details and contrast, and eventually I managed to get both of them. In my humble opinion is quite a well balanced image, with a lot of interesting elements to keep your eyes scanning it for a while.
Tuesday, September 13, 2011
I didn't have much time on a late Saturday afternoon, we were playing cards until 6:00pm and with the summer days getting short couldn't scout too many places. I wanted to go back to a lake I have photographed a couple of years ago but eventually I got lost and couldn't find it. So I took an anonymus dirt road and looked around for a nice place to photograph. To be very honest with you, I didn't find anything interesting so I took some average photos waiting for a better light to come. When the sun disappeared behind the horizon, the sky started to turn into a deeper blue and the puffs of clouds picking up the colors of sunset. Here's what I got for you today, nothing to rave about, yet a serene sunset on the spanish fields. Life's good!
Sunday, September 11, 2011
Sunday, September 4, 2011
Bijagos islands, Guinea Bissau. The boats ready to leave for the day's fishing, a photo by Nicola Zingarelli on Flickr.
For this shot I had to be in the water with the camera, something I'm more and more afraid to do nowdays... Anyway, the sun was coming up fast, as it happens in the tropics, and the fishermen all excited and getting ready to leave. For someone who love the sport is one of the best moments of the day.
Saturday, September 3, 2011
Friday, September 2, 2011
Andaman Islands, India. Red Snapper (Lutjanus bohar) caught with a stickbait. SB800 through Orbis Ring Flash
Andaman Islands, India. Red Snapper (Lutjanus bohar) caught with a stickbait. SB800 through Orbis Ring Flash, a photo by Nicola Zingarelli on Flickr.
SB800 through Orbis Ring Flash triggered with Nikon CLS
Tuesday, August 30, 2011
Wednesday, February 2, 2011
I travel with few spaniards and I will finally meet a group of crazy Italians I have always been in contact with and never met, I believe it is going to be great fun
I hope I will be able to post some sort of live report, it all depends on the Internet and my will to edit the images fast and do some work after a long fishing day.... We'll see. A full report will be available as soon as I come back
Thursday, January 27, 2011
|The Unknown Soldier Non-HDR version|
The power of HDR images is sure known by many of you, but I still wonder if this has really much in common with photography, as we know it. Yes, you still have to find a nice composition and framing, the subject must be interesting and you got to know the technique to take so many different exposures, but after that, the software's algorythmics do the rest for you. All right, you have to know how to move the slides, but this is the same in Lightroom or Photoshop so its just part of the game.
|The Unknown Soldier HDR version|
Monday, January 24, 2011
Wednesday, January 19, 2011
Monday, January 17, 2011
Thursday, January 13, 2011
During the post processing work I had to bring up a bit the sky becaus eit was too dark, and get a dimmer light on the foregrond, too bright and too hot. Some local adjustments have been also done to the land in the horizon, in order not to have a black spot.
Monday, January 10, 2011
make the flaw bigger, exaggerate the bug and create some super dramatic shots.
For this image I put the camera n the tripod and almost had to sit on the sidewalk to compose through the viewfinder. The 10-20 was with its nose up and everything seem to tumble on top of the viewer. I edited it in Lightorrm and converted in duotone because the full color image was kind of weird, I mean there was a strange mix of colors
Wednesday, January 5, 2011
The new Ezybox Speed-Lite is a 22cm x 22cm mini softbox which attaches directly onto a flashgun whether it's on or off the camera. The softbox folds in the same way as our other highly successful Ezybox softboxes making it an ultra portable solution for busy photographers. The Ezybox Speed-Lite also features an inner and outer diffusion layer (both removable) which delivers an unrivalled softness of light from such a small softbox.
Check it out
Sunday, January 2, 2011
This is the technical list
2 X SB800 speedlights triggered with CLS
One speedlight through Lastolite EzyBox
One Speedlight through Orbis Ring Flash
One white reflector
Nikon D90 with Tokina 100mm f2.8 Macro
Black Vinyl background
|Detail of the spool and the body of the reel|
|Detail of the drag lever and drag preset|
|Side plate with accucast knob|
|Side plate with strike limit|
|Side plate with "lefty" sing for reels with left handle|
|The whole reel|
|Whole reel sprayed with water and with a Theos jig on one side|