First True Session with new setup. C&C Requested

Discussion in 'Formal Portraits and Weddings' started by ERAUGrad04, Sep 15, 2008.

  1. ERAUGrad04


    Jan 15, 2008
    I finally had the chance to put the new portable studio to the test last night. As always, honest C&C is always appreciated!

    Nikon D90 w/ SU-800
    Nikkor 50mm 1.4
    ISO L1.0(100)
    SB-800 through 43" Wescott camera left as key(Manual @ 1/8)
    SB-600 through 43" Wescott camera right for fill(Manual @ 1/16)








    Thanks for looking!
  2. Morgan, Very nice work.
  3. Isn't it fun when things come together like that. Congrats on some fine images Morgan.
  4. These look great! I see no flaws, so no CC to give. :smile:
  5. Michael


    Jun 30, 2005
    There isn't to much to say except well done! These are very nice...
  6. Excellent work Morgan. Don't know if you could have done anything better.
  7. ERAUGrad04


    Jan 15, 2008
    Thank you everyone for the kind words!

  8. paradiddle


    Jun 1, 2007
    Morgan -

    I like the pictures. I have a similar setup but havent been able to do such shoots for a while. I wonder what moving one of the flashes to light behind the baby and use a reflector on the other side would do. Thinking of providing a little more seperation from the background. Nice shots!
  9. Nice work, Morgan! The lighting is good, but more importantly, you caught some great poses/expressions, which I find to be the biggest challenge in baby photography. And the black background imparts a nice sense of 3D to the captures.

    I'm not sure what the advantage is of using the artificial iso100 setting on your d90. From what I've read, the L1.0 mode on other cameras actually sacrifices detail. The images would have been just as clean at the base sensitivity of iso200, and you could have dialed down the speedlights, saving battery power. Just a thought.

    Watch out for partial crops of hands and feet, as in #6. It's best to leave some room during capture, and make the tight crops afterwards in the darkroom.

    The exposure levels are excellent, but the lighting is a bit on the flat side. I'd dial down the fill by a stop to give the result some modeling. Jmho.
  10. ERAUGrad04


    Jan 15, 2008

    Thank you very much for the input! I always thought that the lower the ISO, the better, but next time I will defiantly set it to base of 200 and let 'er rip! I would defiantly enjoy the extra juice in the batteries at the end of the day and the faster recycle time the extra stop will give me with the speedlights.

    I do have a question regarding key/fill ratios. I have always heard to use a 3-1 ratio. What is the best way to set this ratio up using Manual mode on the speedlights? In the above pictures, I had the key set to 1/8 power and the fill set to 1/16. Should I have toned down the fill to 1/32 to better balance the light?

    Thank you again everyone! I would be nowhere near my current level without all the wonderful information and advice that I have found and received here!!

  11. Miguel


    May 12, 2006
    Norwalk, CT
    Hello Morgan,

    You've got some nice shots here, but I agree with Frank, the lighting is a little flat. If you increase the lighting ratio it will create more shadow giving form and depth to your subject.

    Also I would stay away from the ISO L1.0 setting. From what I have read it isn't actually calibrated to ISO 100. So if you take readings with a light meter set to ISO 100 and then set your camera to those settings chances are they will be off a little.

    I think Frank can probably explain how to set you lights in manual for the proper ratio, but what I would do is start with my main light, take a few test shots and dial in your power and camera settings, then add the fill light, starting at a very low setting and increase it just enough to open up the shadow areas.

    Hope this helps.
  12. BarkisPhoto


    Jul 20, 2007
    New England
    Hi, Morgan -- nice work (and cute subject)! I think you have some very good images here...

    Best Regards,
  13. drdrew


    Dec 28, 2007
    solid work, but here's something to think about. you are using SB 800s and have essentially a black background. it would seem that you could turn those puppies up enough to close down your aperture to f/8 - f/16 in order to increase your DOF. there is no background to throw out of focus, so F4 is not helping you any, in fact it is throwing the toes out of focus. with a higher f stop you could get the whole adorable baby in focus. :) 
  14. papa85

    papa85 Guest

    Morgen you got yourself some very well good photos,they will be treasures in years to come.
  15. mattsteg


    Aug 10, 2007
    There's a bit of a green color cast to the first 2 and a yellow cast to the third that I don't see in the rest.
  16. Miguel


    May 12, 2006
    Norwalk, CT
    One more suggestion. You may want to use a custom white balance or grey card. This will give you consistent color shot to shot.
  17. paradiddle


    Jun 1, 2007
    How do you use a grey card shot to shot?
  18. Miguel


    May 12, 2006
    Norwalk, CT
    Once you have all you lights set and proper exposure you have your subject hold the grey card and you take a picture. When you go to process your images you set your white balance by sampling the grey card with the eyedropper depending on what software you are using.

    Now this will give you a very "accurate" white balance, but may not be what you want. But it gives you a starting point and you can tweak it to taste and apply it to the entire set.
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