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Critique Nested, old spoons

Discussion in 'Black and White' started by Mike Buckley, Mar 16, 2019 at 12:07 AM.

  1. As I was putting my friends' spoons away after making the other photo, I noticed that these two spoons displayed nicely as a nested pair. So, I made the photo shown below.

    The background is black velvet. Two small continuous-light lamps on the left and right sides shining to the rear allowed just enough light to fall onto the scene to brightly light the lips and sides of the handles. A medium continuous-light lamp was placed as far away from the subjects as my tiny makeshift studio allowed, which cast a hard shadow on the left side of the small spoon and displayed the imperfections in both spoons. That lamp was positioned below and to the right of the scene.

    Mike 2019-03-15--004-S.jpg
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    Last edited: Mar 16, 2019 at 12:27 AM
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  2. I've missed your creative "household" monos Mike. Welcome back!
  3. Excellent work, Mike!
    Beautiful composition and perfect lighting.

    Just wondering: do you immediately 'see' the setup you want for the lights and background or do you experiment to come to what you wanted?
  4. Thank you to Bart, Bill and dossy!

    It really depends on the situation when it comes to the lighting setup. Sometimes I know from the outset exactly how I want to light the scene and everything turns out as I expected. That's typical when I photograph transparent glass. Sometimes I think I know an ideal lighting setup from the outset and quickly realize that I have to immediately change my plan. That happens most often when photographing opaque objects. Sometimes I come upon a lighting setup purely by accident, such as the time I was setting up the composition while the overhead fluorescent light to the right of the scene was still on purely to aid me while trying to safely maneuver within the confines of my tiny makeshift studio. The lighting was so effective that I photographed the scene that way. Sometimes I'm completely stumped about an ideal lighting setup and rely completely on experimentation (that never happens when photographing glass, as I've specialized in that for quite awhile). Coming upon a lighting setup by accident and initially being completely stumped happen far less often than the other two situations, but they do happen.

    As for the background and tabletops, I'm more consistent with them than with lighting setups; I usually know what kind of materials and horizons to use as one of the very first parts of designing the entire setup.

    Even when I'm certain of my plan whether it's about the lighting, tabletop or background, I always allow myself the time and inclination to experiment at least a little bit about some detail of the overall setup. Otherwise, I might miss out on an opportunity to come across something I like a lot even if I realize that though it can't be used when photographing the current scene, it would work well in a different situation.

    There is lots and lots of experimentation when it comes to implementing the details of the lighting plan: Is the effect better when a diffusion sock is placed on the lamp, when the lamp is moved just a little to the right, etc., etc.?
    Last edited: Mar 16, 2019 at 9:17 AM
    • Informative Informative x 1
  5. Mike, this is a lovely shot that really works for me. You should post a copy of it over on the minimalism thread as it is a wonderful example of minimalism

    alexis and Georgie Beagle
  6. That was my immediate thought too!
  7. Thanks for your explanation, Mike.
    Very informative!

  8. Super idea, I love it!
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