Basics and Photography Techniques for Professional Photos
In the previous section, we have been familiar with the shooting with existing light and flash shooting. Now we’re going to move to the studio.
The studio can temporarily be placed in any space that is large enough to set some lighting.
Of course, the studio can equip you for a constant if we have the space and the need for it.
For the simplest recording, such as a portrait, a reflector or just a 250 – 500W reflector bulb in a sufficiently secure enclosure and a reflective reflector. We need a suitable casing with a suitable holder or tripod for the bulb.
We can use a styrofoam board or a white cardboard as a bumper to light up the shadow. We can buy a folding bumper. If we are photographing a portrait in the ambiance, we need to look at the proper background selection to avoid known compositional errors.
For better and full illumination we need more lighting, preferably with different width reflators. For the proper color temperature, the most suitable are the special opaque Nitraphot bulbs, which are nowadays less used because they have successfully replaced the halogen bulbs. The most popular are Hedler’s built-in fans, which allow unlimited use. Now Hedler offers more lightning flash models, ranging from 3200 / 3400K, such as Videolux silent automatic 2000, or a new Profilux 200 with a 5600K color temperature and a metal halide bulb. For all types of lighting, there are additional accessories: spotlights, refreshing umbrellas, softeners, light stents and the like. This lighting is very comfortable for work because we always see the strength of the light and we can precisely determine the relationship between bright and shady parts. However, the light intensity cannot be compared with the flashing light bulbs that allow short time and thus the recording of motion. That’s why the flashlights – amplify and amplify the flashes and make real studio flashes.
For larger spaces and larger objects, we need professional flashing reflectors such as BOWENS, MULTIBLITZ, BALCAR, and others. To begin with is a very practical Multiblitz Mini-Studio or a newer version of Multiblitz Profile Compact 200,
which we get in a suitcase with all the accessories as shown in the picture. With such a set we can at any time set up a temporary studio, so we still have to provide the proper environment.
I have already mentioned the background several times. When we are shooting objects or people, we want more times or we need a quiet background. The simplest is a white paper that is easy to get. The colored background is more demanding. It can also be of paper, of course, firmer, that it does not hold too fast, or something else. We buy a certain material, the best fabric, already dyed or just paint it. Some money, work, and ingenuity should be invested. Of course, you can buy it all, even special backdrops.
In addition to capturing a portrait, a whole person or an act, it is a favorite recording of dead nature and small objects. For this purpose, we are treating the assembly table, which we can make or buy it yourself in the photo store.
In the figure above we see an example of painting small pottery on the background with the structure. Color backgrounds are also good.
On the upper picture there is a bowl of flowers on a white background, that there is no blue resin, and for the sky, the background goes to blue.
In the figure above, we see an example of portrait photography on a dark-gray background with a larger transition. An example of a photo on a table with a structural background and sketch is shown in the picture below.
For an article about Czech beer, I took a black background with a transition to neutral, lit with a softbox and a white bumper on the right side to ease the shadow. As the light was soft, the shadows were less rigid and only emphasized the plasticity of the footage.
Such monochrome backgrounds can be purchased, and we get them in different sizes: 80×55, 80×108, 108×156 and 190×300 cm. Large backgrounds in the largest size of 2.7 x 10 meters.
How do we record and determine the right light? An important lamp setting is important. We always design a single lamp as the main one. With others, more or less, we shine the shadows and interesting details. Regardless of the type of reflector, we need a light meter, handheld. We need a flash meter in the flash. We always measure incendiary light, or how much light falls on our object. In exceptional circumstances and mostly in classical spotlights, non-flashing, we can measure and reject the light. It may often happen that the illumination will not be accurate because some of the reflators are lit in the camera and thus in the light bulb in it. If we do not already have a handheld headlight, we must make sure that we do not allow this problem to overcome the annoying reflector, so that we do not shadow the object we are shooting.
The following difficulties are high gloss objects. The
se are glass, lacquered, chrome-plated … For such it is best to use a light tent. Make it from a thin white cloth or transparent paper. In the store, you can get plywood tents of different sizes. We photograph the object through the hole at the top or cut the opening from the side. Lights or flashes are placed on the outside to get scattered light without a reflection.
In the picture, we see two ways to capture metal scissors so that the image is plastic enough.
He could still have different options. Finally, let’s look at the portrait in the studio. The proper background, lighting, and composition are important. Before shooting, we have to tell the model what we want, including what kind of clothes to wear. In the end, not least, it’s a good make-up. The simplest is if the model knows this, and let them bring their cosmetic accessories. Let’s just emphasize the most important and make sure that during the shooting, it does not start to light up. This can be prevented by special rice from the use of powders used in theater and television. It goes with ordinary dry powder. Do not use liquid and greasy components. Professional photographers also help professional makeup artists who know the profession because they should not smear during the makeup of the makeup.
More about cameras and lenses. The format is not important, the camera’s capabilities are more important when we need to balance the perspective. In large format cameras, this is not a problem because they have a bell that allows different corrections or intended deformations. Of course, they were made for commercial recordings. With small and medium format, we help with shift lenses. Nowadays, we can solve this with software tools on your computer, because it does not matter if we have a scrapped analog or original digital. It all depends on the complexity and purpose of the recording.
Wide-angle lenses are very rarely used because distortion is very rapid in the studio at a short distance. That’s why the best normal and portrait lenses are. With the portrait of a girl (up) I deliberately used a brown background. If I had separated my head from the background, I used the right headlight and the left light almost behind the model. Hats and white t-shirts emphasize the beauty of her skin. Hasselblad camera with 80 mm lens and Kodak EPY film.
I already mentioned that with halogen lights we can see the light arrangement. And I used these portraits. With flashing reflectors, a pilot lamp in the spotlight itself is used to determine the shadow, which is naturally weaker than the later flash. It lights up when setting objects and defining shadows, and when we flash, the flash is amplified. It happens that in the pilot light, we do not see a certain reflection, because it is weaker, and is only visible in the video. So, you have to look at the lights repeatedly so that there will be no regrets later. Take the flash into an empty, critical place, look through the camera well and if you need to fix the positioning of the lamps, the reflector …
And for the end. Studio photography is a big improvisation. Except for naturally known things. For this, you will see a patch of small accessories with a professional photographer, which each collects according to their own needs and needs of the orderer. And believe that in such a “mess” the best photos are created.