First Studio Session - Smokin' Gun

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Jul 28, 2006
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smokingun.jpg
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This was done using three Alien Bee Lights - an AB800 and giant softbox camera left (as you can see in the reflection on the sunglasses), an AB400 as a hairlight, and a AB400 camera right with umbrella. The background was a just a simple black cloth background supported by stands.

Keep in mind I know zero about lighting, never read a book or did much else, just winged it - this was just playing around and not a professional session.

Camera: Nikon D200, lens used: Nikon 18-70 DX @ 5.6 (handheld). No Post Processing, this is a straight RAW conversion using Capture 4.4.

I gotta admit, the metering, color (this is skin tone heaven), detail, and dynamic range of the D200 is superb. The 18-70 really impressed me as well, it delivered some stunning images that honestly left nothing to be desired.

We started doing simple shots of two models, but I grew tired of your typical magazine style poses and decided to do something a little different. My friend (who was shooting with me using a Canon 30D and various L glass) provided his hand gun for the prop, I came up with the idea of gunsmoke by having him blow smoke up in the air using a lit cigar (he was laying on the floor below the model). I took around 600 pictures and we tried different things, but I really like the overall look of the image. This was my frist time shooting people in the studio, i have had my ABs for a while, but have been limited to product shooting and doing some location based work for a local club. I ended up selling my AB800s to my friend whom I shot with as he wanted more lighting and I have decided to go CLS for the portability.
 
Joined
May 27, 2005
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Clearwater, Florida
Nice shot all around. Incredible shot considering this was your first effort in the studio with you lights!!!

What power were your bees set at for f5.6? I'm curious since I seem to have to dial my bees way down.
 
Joined
Jul 28, 2006
Messages
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Location
Myrtle Beach, SC
Nice shot all around. Incredible shot considering this was your first effort in the studio with you lights!!!

What power were your bees set at for f5.6? I'm curious since I seem to have to dial my bees way down.

Thanks. Oh boy, we had the power on the bees all set too different amounts, i'll have to ask my friend if he remembers. We played around with the power levels depending upon the shot.
 
G

gnet158

Guest
Nice work, you might also want to clone out the WB reflection on the sun glasses.
 
Joined
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Austin
I think you did great for your first session! But yeah, that serial number should get cloned out....
 
Joined
Jun 6, 2006
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Tulsa, OK
That looks great man, clone serial and tell her to keep her finger off the trigger and it's perfect. =]
 
Joined
Jul 28, 2006
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thanks

i appreciate all the kind comments. it was alot of fun doing this stuff, i find you enjoy photography when you don't take it too seriously and in this case we just had a good time :wink:
 
Joined
Jan 9, 2007
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Raleigh, NC
yea the light is great! i like the gun more than anything else in this shot. hehe.
 
Joined
Jul 28, 2006
Messages
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Myrtle Beach, SC
ya know

the ironic thing is is that most people tell ya to start with only 1 light and master it before using more. I have had a single AB800 for a long time and always found it difficult to work with in that it was hard to produce a good result without quite a bit of work and I think that is why so many people get frustrated. When you use three lights like i did for the above shot, i actually found it much easier as all three lights illuminate the subject and once you have them in position, it's only a matter of adjusting the power of each to tailor the shadows and highlights: i equate it to working with a 3-D space as opposed to a 2-D space - a single light is just to flat and two 'direct'. i'd recommend newbies go for more than 1 light starting out, that's just opinion...
 
Joined
Jul 9, 2008
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Tulsa, OK
That looks great man, clone serial and tell her to keep her finger off the trigger and it's perfect. =]

LOL - us shooters think alike. First thing I thought of was trigger control.

"If you ain't shooting something, your finger doesn't need to be on the trigger!"

Great picture though,

Jonny
 

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