studio photography Tag

A client called today with an interesting studio problem. She has been thinking about it, experimenting, and doing the science correctly, so I learned something.She shoots in a small space. She wants to do work at a wide aperture - wider than f:4. Even with one single light from her 400 w/s set and her camera set to a very low ISO, she still has too much light for the subjects.She's tried the temporary dodge of covering the front of a softbox with a grey chiffon, but this contributes an unwanted colour cast. Basically she just has too much light.Tempting to trade it in and get lower power, but she may have larger premises one day or be taking photos of big groups out in big halls...

I have no idea. Perhaps the Arca company was originally Swiss and now they are French. Whatever the explanation, the pan and tilt head pictured here is a gem.Don't be fooled by first looks - that is a pan and tilt rather than a ball head  ( which they also make...

I used to think that " singer-songwriter " were the most terrifying words in the language, but I have concluded that the invitation to set up a studio is. Beause you never can tell how much space you'll have or where it will be.This reflection is brought to you by an experience on Saturday, doing a small studio event shoot for my social club. I've been doing these costumed dinner shoots for what seems like decades...

Recently it came to my notice that sometimes people have difficulty with roll backdrops for studio use. Here's a few tips garnered from years of having difficulties. Don't worry - all the bad language has long been said, so this post is safe for work.The 2750 mm by 11,000 mm rolls of backdrop paper made by the Superior company are sort of he standard of the industry. Curious measurement...

 Well, you live long enough, you see everything. Domenic found a brand new Manfrotto extending light stand put away in the storeroom and brought it down to the sales floor. No mean feat, either - the thing weighs 21 Kg.It is a 087NW cine stand. Built to take really heavy weights up really high. It will loft 30 Kg to 3.7 metres via a two-part column.That is seriously heavy construction there. Look at the castings and the bolts. Look at the cast footplate on the side to allow the operator to get to the lights or cameras that are way up high.Look at the cast-on ring to allow guy wires to be attached for stability in a wind.Look at the crank mechanism - sorta like a gun mount. Serious stuff for serious studios.Someone out there in Western Australia needs this stand....

Backdrops are great things. When you shoot people, products, or pets on a clean backdrop the visual concentration goes directly to the subject. This is why Irving Penn used them in many of his fashion shots and then extended the idea out into the wilds to shoot his mud men and other traveller's wonders.Irv was an enthusiast all right, because I've seen shots of his studio in the wilds constructed of scaffolding and canvas. They are monumental things, but they ensure the separation of the subject and control of the light.Closed to home, and generally not of mud men. we see many of our clients taking out backdrop stand kits as purchases or from the rental department. these kits are way easier to wrangle as they are essentially two big light stands and a cross bar. the cross bar breaks down into 4 sections for packing. The frame will support a 3 metre-wide backdrop and it will generally raise it 3 metres high. Not that this is a good idea - higher you go the more chance of tipping it...

That was a down shot. The sort of thing that you do when you don't know that you can't do it.Wooden 4 x 5 field camera bolted to a rafter in the studio ceiling. Just enough space between the the back of the camera and the ceiling to insert the double dark holder.A builder's ladder to get up to the camera for cocking the lens and inserting the double dark and then pulling the dark slide.Focus? Lie on the floor with the camera just above my nose and focus on the rafter - I mean, focus works in both ways - once it is set for the rafter it'll be set for the floor.Red paper backdrop covered in thin red velvet. You have no idea how much white lint a red velvet can pick up until you are sitting there with a roll of sticky tape picking up the bits.Lights, camera, action. Model in place, drapes in place, football in place - ladder in place, double dark in place, cock the shutter, pull the slide, stretch the air release tube...