Turning good light on ugly wall into nice background!

OK, this blog post is not perfect, like a students shade hitting the model 🙂 but there is something to learn. First thing I look for is GOOD LIGHT! Then a background. The sun is setting down nicely hitting an ugly wall on the building behind my studio. The wall itself was boring and to much like her skin color and hair. I wanted a more professional look. Solution: Shooting along the wall towards the mountains where I get a majority of a bluish cold background, thanks to the colder color temperature in the shade etc. Blue is good, almost a complimentary color and importantly a receding color. The warm area in the background brings in a little repetition of color which is good. The warm color of the evening sun brings her towards us.

Next step is choosing the right f. stop and lens. I used a 70-200mm f.2.8 and shot at 200mm and f 2.8 to blur the background to the max, focusing on the eyes. I love hunting down last minute sun and use it as a direct light source like in this image. See how I make the sun hit her in about 45 degrees so the light wraps around her face and give her a nice shade to shape the face. In a way I like the shadow hitting the white, which tones down lot’s of the bright white. All I done to the file is auto contrast and unsharp mask in Photoshop (Unsharp Mask: Amount 121, Radius 1.2, Threshold 1). Please have a great week end:-) Kenneth

PS. The illustrations underneath was shot today, a different day then the main shot and the sun was not as warm sun. When I did the actual shoot I needed to use the short time of good light to photograph and teach my students. (Photographing People Part 3 class.) by intSOP.

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