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Samantha portrait with octabox

Discussion in 'Formal Portraits and Weddings' started by Mitchell, Aug 3, 2008.

  1. My wife hated my last attempt at recreating a portrait of my oldest in this same outfit. The print promptly went in the garbage.

    Here is my attempt today. My first shot with an octabox and the strobes. Can you tell I don't know what I'm doing?
    Any suggestions would be appreciated.

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  2. the experts here will give their suggestions
    i'll tell you, mitch.... that i like this picture VERY MUCH
  3. I like this image and think that you handled the lighting well. I will make one tiny suggestion that will improve the image quite a bit. Go to levels and move the left slider until it contacts the data in your histogram. I think you will see what I am talking about by way of improvement. This is such a cute shot of little Sam.
  4. Everything about this image says, "I've got spunk and I'm darned proud of it." My point is that it's far more than just a picture. It's an image that immediately evokes a strong emotional response. Congratulations!
  5. Thanks for the tip, Gordon. When I look at the histogram, there is still a little bit of data on the left of the curve. While the image does look a little better with your suggestion, I wonder what data I am loosing by moving that slider.
  6. Marina

    Marina Guest

    Mitch, she looks great! I feel though your lighting was little bit overpowering. May be reducing exposure will do the trick.
    Nicely done!
  7. I always go with what looks best. I wonder if sometimes the data isn't being reported completely accurately. It's not as if software always does what it is supposed to do.
  8. Mike,
    I appreciate your comments here. Glad to see I've captured some of Samantha's spunkiness in this image.

    I must agree with your thoughts on the histogram. Better to trust your own eyes than to stare at the peaks on the graph. I'll take a closer look at this one.
  9. Thanks, Marina.

    Do you find the lighting on the subject too overpowering or is the bright background bothering you?

    This type of portrait is tricky for me because you are lighting two different objects. While you try to properly expose the subject, you try to overexpose the background by 1-2 stops. Perhaps I am looking at this the wrong way?:confused: 
  10. Here's the original shot of Stefanie taken over 10 years ago.

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  11. mitch,
    i cannot believe how stefanie has changed
  12. Miguel


    May 12, 2006
    Norwalk, CT
    Hey Mitch:

    Looks good to me, maybe a little hot, but still good. The only thing I would do is clone out the second catch light. All in all a great capture and a definite improvement from your first attempt.
  13. Marina

    Marina Guest

    I don't care about bg as much, my main focus always on the subject, especially in a studio (this is your new lighting, correct?, not the garage)

    So yes, i found "hot" spots on her face to be a little too hot. Second shot you've posted looks a lot toned compare to yours.

    I hope i explained myself somewhat clearly.

    I hope you don't mind, i tried to play with it in CS. I'll remove it if you mind, just let me know.

  14. Very nice shot of your pretty daughter. Wish I had all that studio stuff......

    Hey, try one with your "garage" method. Now, at least I do have a garage!

    Thanks for sharing. Always a pleasure to view your images of the kids.

  15. Marina, thanks for playing with this one. I certainly don't mind. Could you tell me what you did when you "played"?

    When I look at mine, the face looks a little hot, but it is not blown. You'd still like it toned down some more?

  16. Thanks, Miguel. I was hoping you would look at this one.

    I agree that the lighting is much better than my first try at this one. I must say that I love the soft, wrap around effect from the large octadome. Really a great diffuser.
  17. You nailed it pretty good. The adjustment Marina did really helps it out.
    Many times I have used two lights, but with one or two people it usually
    works better to use one light and a reflector.
    Nice work, Love the expression..very pretty!
  18. BarkisPhoto


    Jul 20, 2007
    New England
    Hi, Mitch -- really nice portrait (of course, your daughter is so cute it would be hard to fail)! I agree with previous comments that the original is a 'bit hot' and, IMHO, tweaking it slightly makes a nice portrait great. Love the broad light source you get from the octabox ...

    Best Regards,
  19. Marina

    Marina Guest

    Mitch, all i did was adjust highlights via shadow/highlights option in CS. One more thing i did is cloned out second light in her eyes, nothing fancy.

    Give it a try, there are few different things you can do. Do you shoot RAW at all?
  20. Miguel


    May 12, 2006
    Norwalk, CT
    I haven't been around much lately, but I'm trying to catch up. The large octadome works nicely. I get similar results with my large (36x48) Softbox, which is why I didn't use it for my last shoot. The smaller box gave me more control on where I wanted the light. Although I prefer to shoot portraits with the large box for the soft wrap around light.
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