I'm always looking for the rare moment...
When working on pro-beauty shoots there is surprisingly little time to shoot images that you actually want to shoot.
I often find that there's a danger that everyone is "on point" at all times. I'm certainly on one, as are my team. The assistant on this shoot is brilliant. He is "Johnny On the Spot" with the reflectors and stands, the SD cards and the shot list.
The make up artist is in and out, doing her thing, whilst the client is asking a million questions of the stylist, and calling the magazine. I think she has more on her plate than I do!
It's only at points of transition, between shots, or right at the end of the shoot, that I can sometimes snatch something that may please me, not the magazine or the client. This frame is such a shot.
Let me point out the faults for which I do not care: The hair has back lit stragglers, The exposure is very slightly clipped above her forehead. The concealer on the nose is well past it's sell-by date. (It's been on for nearly 2 hours). Cody looks like she has been working really hard for us, and that is oh! so true. The hand partially covers the sapphire key pendant. The collar on the shirt has collapsed. But when the assistant handed her the coffee, she took it, raised her arm to rub her neck and I snatched this frame. Her gaze is honest and authentic. And, oh so lovely!
I hope you enjoy viewing the image - Colin
Cody Cataluffi - Outside the studio - London, UK
Pixel Peepers' Notes & Newbie Hints & Tips:
Sony A7R III FE85mm 1.4GM @ f2 1/250 sec - ISO100 - Handheld - Cropped
Model: Cody Cataluffi
Location: We are outside the studio, in the garden, here in London, UK.
Set up: This shot is taken on a sunny day. The model is in the shade of an Orangery. I’m am in the orangery, shooting out. You can see the sun on the Acer trees, in the background. There are no lights used, just reflectors, and a full gold on the left. You need to be careful with a full gold reflector on the face. You can see it in the reflections of her eyes. She actually has beautiful green eyes but they are flooded with gold in this shot. You can see the difference between using half gold and full gold by comparing with the article here.
There is a also very large white reflector behind me. (I think I revealed before that it’s a bed sheet!). It is creating the additional light that is also being reflected in the eyes. It affords me an opportunity to lift them a lot, adding so much life to the shot. It also brightens the shadows so that when the file hits Adobe Camera RAW (ACR) I can lift the shadows a little more and drop the highlights a little to give the finished "even-lighting" look. (These kinds of tools are available in similar RAW processors. I just happen to be a Photoshop guy.)
Cody 1:1 - 100% - Screen Grab
Above is the cropped file in a zip archive. Feel fee to download it so that you can see the image at 100% 1:1 on your own system.
Adobe Camera RAW Import Settings: The shot is graded in ACR globally, and then, using the brush tool. I locally adjust and touch specific areas. If you haven’t used the brush tool in ACR before, I really recommend it. In this case I used it to slightly lighten under Cody's eyes (around 1/3 of a stop).
Note: the Sony 85mm GMaster lens picks up every pore on her skin, including powder imperfections on the make up around her nose. Of course, the final image isn't meant to be viewed like this, but I thought you guys would be interested to see it.
The rest is all Cody, and what her parents took to the party.
Here's a ref image to show you the full frame as shot in camera.
Cody Full Frame Ref
If you have any questions or comments about the article I'd love to hear from you. Just enter your comments below - Colin