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First model shoot
Posted By: dkittle, 06-23-2008, 06:19 AM

So, I've been watching the works of some of the better model photographers here (won't mention any names, but there are some really outstanding ones!) and got inspired to get out there and get some practice. This is my first shoot (other than a few classroom attempts) with just me and a model.

Cat (met through Model Mayhem) and I went out into some alleys in the Queen/Spadina area in Toronto for these shots. It was horrible weather, had a light rain part way through the shoot and a little on the cold side. Her assistant swooped in between poses to throw a hoodie on her to keep her warm :-)

While both of us are pretty inexperienced, it was a fun shoot and I got a couple that I was very happy with.

The rest of the top dozen can be found at: Cat in an Alley

Thanks for looking, I welcome C&C if you have some pointers for me!

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06-23-2008, 06:40 AM   #2
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i really like #11 in the actual gallery,

also the resolution is very good on these images, i'm gonna guess you're putting that FA31 to good use
06-23-2008, 07:17 AM   #3
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Very nice! I do have to say, as a woman with err... prominant features from a family of women with proinant features (read: a big nose) I've found that fill flash on the face makes all the difference. Evening out those shadows can really make the difference between a flattering portrait and one that is not so flattering. That may just be me projecting my own insecurities though and others may be very happy with their face un-fillflashed.
06-23-2008, 07:40 AM   #4
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Gooshin, that's actually my fav too. I thought that others might find it overprocessed, though.

TiJean, thanks for the suggestion. I was going to try some off-camera flash that day (brought a 540 plus stand and umbrella even), but the wind would blow through the alley occationally so I was worried about equipment damage.

Do you have any tips for fill-flash?? I was shooting in manual the whole time. Would you leave the flash in P-TTL and use -1 or -1 1/2 flash EV? Or is it better to just keep the flash in manual mode?

06-23-2008, 10:43 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by dkittle Quote
Gooshin, that's actually my fav too.
dkittle, your great photo #3 from your OP made me visit your gallery.

In particular "Figurative Photography" is both, great photography and touching. Especially #21/39 is pure art. Cannot believe your thread title "First model shoot"
06-23-2008, 11:34 AM   #6
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I think that portrait photography is 50% great capture and 50% subject matter. The subject does not have to be beautiful (in the commercial sense), but I think they do have to have their own special energy (character, smile, internal story, something a song writer would call a hook, etc). The gal in your shots does not look happy to be there, nor does she inspire any interest. I remember a photography teacher telling me that everyone (subject) had a good photo in them. The trick was to pull it out of them. I think that your subject has one too. We have just not seen it yet.
06-23-2008, 11:59 AM   #7
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Falconeye, thanks for the comment! I guess this is really my third shoot with models (two in the classroom). I had great fun in the figurative class and I guess it shows :-)

Spyglass, I completely understand what you are saying. I tried a few things to get the model to relax. She has a very closed off personality. I gave her and her boyfriend a drive home after the shoot and she commented that she's got to 'learn more expressions' while she was reviewing the photos in the car. She also said that she's generally a lot more relaxed on a second shoot with the same person - we might try again. Still, I have to take some responsibility for it and work harder to draw the model out next time. Thanks!

06-23-2008, 01:51 PM   #8
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Well done Don,

You've done the technical side quite well, but I agree that her expressions were 'not her'. See how you go with her next time.

Once you've got the manual settings right on the flash, I'd say keep going manual - unless you want to try moving the flash closer or further away from the subject. Perhaps also try some dynamic light effects with the flash off the subject's centre and create areas of more highlight and shadows - some of the guys here have worked this technique to an art and the images pop out with life.

Certainly for your first model shoot, you've done a great job.
06-23-2008, 03:42 PM   #9
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My friend who is a good gof models keeps trying to work with this one model who is very pretty but seems to have only 1 expression. She has tried everything, even wine, lol but still she gets a stone faced expression from her. Some times it really is the model. Very nice work cant wait to see what you do next

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