Friday, November 22, 2013

I have missed you!

You may have noticed I was "away" for a while...hopefully you missed me as well :)
I have definitely missed creating new blog posts & sharing them with you...
One of the more important reasons I was so quiet (besides keeping busy with photo assignments) was being pregnant & now the proud mother of a six months old beautiful baby girl :)
No one told me that one of the things time does when you have a baby is take quantum leaps instead of the regular 24/7...for example, I meant to take little baby pictures of her & only got around to doing it now(!). Moving to a new house & having everything in boxes didn't help either but I finally dug out a basic light setup & did a little test.
I set up shop in the basement (great high ceiling & windows) & did this around midnight when the little peanut refused to go to sleep & was seeking creative entertainment...I love having an in house model! Just like the big fashion houses ;)

This is a simple setup you can do anywhere (almost), I used a painted backdrop from Denny but you can use a solid color, brick wall or anything else you see fit.

The light setup consists of a main light, a hair/back light & a reflector.

I used two Dynalite heads (my favorite light packs!), the main light has a five foot octagon soft box with grid (Photoflex).
The hair/back light also has a honeycomb grid on (#20) to control light spill, it is mounted on a boom arm..
On the opposite side of the main light you have a simple round silver reflector ( Westcott).

I used the teddy bear as a stand in for the youngster since he has way more patient & spent a little time adjusting the lights, I could have done some finer tuning but hubby/assistant was getting restless...hey, I can't get too picky at that time of night, lol!

Here are the stages of directing the lights where you want them to go:
First you want the main light to illuminate your subject & spill onto  the background (since I didn't use a dedicated back light).

Then you want to make sure your hair/back light falls on your subject just right & give a little separation from the background (I could have flagged it a bit more if I wasn't so rushed! :)).

The reflector is filling the other side of the subject but the intensity will be determined by you - move it closer for a brighter look or further away for a soft fill of the shadows  -  I have them about equally distanced from my teddy.

If you are familiar with my work, you know I like to use many more lights when I shoot, being a control freak pays off but since I wanted something simple, quick & easy this setup worked just fine.

Here are a few un-edited takes:

cutie pie photo shoot

The entire actual shoot lasted less then 10 min & that includes having the puppy girl topple backwards & trying to eat the floor (roll up from Denny) but it was a lot of fun & I can't wait to do it again!

After picking out a few of my favorites (sooo hard since I love them all) I headed to Photoshop to do some creative "dodge & burn" & have some fun, I love the look & feel of old I was playing around with different textures & colors, this can literally take forever since the options are endless & at some point I just have to be happy with the result & just let it be :)

Here are a few of my edited images:

 You can use this basic, simple light setup to shoot pretty much anything you like - still life, people, pets, self portraits, etc.
Outside, on location the sun can be your back light (or main light), then use an on/off camera flash to be your second light (either the main or fill light) & of course remember to set up that reflector :)

Would love to hear from you so let me know what you think & definitely share your work with us here!

Happy to be back!


  1. awwwww first and foremost congrats she is beautiful!! this set up is cool the photo came out awesome glad to have you back!

  2. Thanks!!! glad you are still here :) how is your awesome magazine doing? you can post a link for us here, I'm sure more people are interested :)

  3. Absolutely beautiful. Well done.........
    . And the photography is nice too:)

  4. You and your family have truly been blessed. She's beautiful: ) I miss you and wish you and your family well.

  5. Thank you Chris! Same to all of you :) How is your photography coming along?