Sunday, 28 February 2010

Cat Rennie - 28/2/10

I booked this shoot with Cat Rennie back in January. The plan had been to shoot a mixture of outdoors and studio, but with 4" of snow we decided to stay nice and warm indoors.

Again, Ruth Evans did herself proud on make-up.

I'm particularly pleased that we captured what I'd consider less than typical Cat shots (a combination of make-up and lighting).

Of course there are a few trademark dimples and half-smile shots too :)

I think we were all on top form today. Even straight off the camera, the images look stunning and with so many good shots it's going to be very hard to make a final selection.

[Full Gallery - Cat Rennie]

Wednesday, 24 February 2010

Not sharp! - EPS 4th Monthly Projected Images Competition

I didn't do so well tonight (judged by Stephen Lipton).

This one of Billie Lister (make-up by Ruth Evans) scored 15/20, with a comment that it was too tightly cropped (and that the eyes were too dark).
Billie Lister - make-up by Ruth Evans Date: 29 November 2009 © Copyright 2009 Barrie Spence

This shot of Charlie got 14/20, with comments that it should have been more tightly cropped and that the eyes aren't sharp.
Charlie McInally Date: 03 January 2010 © Copyright 2010 Barrie Spence

I must admit I'm disappointed with both scores. There is no point in disputing the judge's opinion about cropping because that's subjective and largely a matter of personal taste (and I probably will change the crop on the Charlie shot).

However, the comment about Charlie's eyes not being sharp is incredibly annoying. I'm very careful that the eyes are sharp in all of my displayed shots (hey, I know I sometimes miss, but you're not going to see those shots unless you are viewing the proofs).

Judge for yourself:

1024x768 as submitted

Large (1926x2000), but not original size - your browser may resize it to fit your window, but at 1:1 this is likely bigger than most high resolution screens.

Pixel-peeping at full size (3730x3744), adding some local sharpening to the iris of the eyes does make very slight improvement, but I'm honestly not convinced that would be visible at the relatively small size submitted to the competition (765x768).

Mutter. Mutter. Mutter.

Sunday, 21 February 2010

Nicole Abbott - 21/2/10

After a long gestation period (we started trying to arrange a shoot last July), I finally got to shoot with Nicole Abbott.

Make-up by Ruth Evans.

Bright and bitterly cold (though above freezing), we started in the nearby hospital grounds with Ruth's suggested theme of "little girl lost". Something different and some images will almost certainly work better viewed together as a set in that context. I'm still trying to decide on the final look for a sequence so don't have anything to show yet.

Again, we finished back in the studio with the gels colouring the charcoal seamless.
Nicole Abbott, make-up by Ruth EvansNicole Abbott, make-up by Ruth EvansNicole Abbott, make-up by Ruth Evans

I even appear to have succeeded with my goal of avoiding tightly cropped headshots and getting lots of longer shots.

Definitely a fun shoot and with lots of good material. It's always good when there are too many good shots to choose from.

[Full Gallery - Nicole Abbott]

Saturday, 20 February 2010

And now for something a little different

Another model from the Hot Sauce video shoot, Ken Brangman is my first shoot with a guy.

Definitely a change form my previous work.

It was a cold and bright day - possibly lit too harshly with the direct sun at times. The first location didn't work out exactly as hoped, but a large cluster of boulders give us something to use and some nice opening shots.
Ken Brangman

We followed that with more outdoors shots at the brickworks - especially effective using the brightly coloured graffiti backgrounds.
Ken Brangman

I'm also very pleased to have some good full-length shots (I don't generally feel confident with them)
Ken Brangman

Back in the studio we unveiled the new roll of charcoal seamless and played with some gels to colour the background:
Ken Brangman

I'm really pleased with the end results and Ken is great to work with.

[Full Gallery - Ken Brangman]

Monday, 8 February 2010

EPS Creative Group

Tonight's judge was EPS member Monika Szczepaniak.

19/20 for this shot of Charlie Banks (make-up by Taiyyibah Bashir)

Charlie Banks, make-up by Taiyyibah Bashir

Tonight's theme was low-light. This one of the fountains in Clarke Quay in Singapore got 16/20:

Clarke Quay Fountains

Tuesday, 2 February 2010

Charlie Banks @ EPS

EPS (Edinburgh Photographic Society) run a monthly beginners tutorial and studio evening group shoot. Charlie Banks was kind enough to accept my invitation to model for the evening, which I think worked out very well (an experienced model really adds to the evening).

I'm not normally a fan of group shoots, but since it was Charlie (and it wasn't crowded) I took my turn:

Charlie Banks

Given that we were all sharing the same lighting setup, I'll be curious to see what other folk will have produced.

I think that it's fair to say that Charlie significantly exceeded their expectations of a model :)

[Full Gallery - Charlie Banks]


I've just had an enquiry about selling some photos. Unexpectedly, it's for some show-jumping shots of Poppy riding Denny in the BSJA classes at Ingliston.

BSJA / Poppy Dennison / Denny

His new owner found them and would like some copies to document his history. Denny is a lovely horse - Fiona and I both rode him before he was sold (Poppy was even trying to get us to buy him).

An occasional visit to one of these events when someone we know is competing is always fun. The reaction of the guys who regularly cover the events and consider it their territory adds to the day's amusement too. To be honest though, I don't see it as a viable business market and have got no intention of competing with them. It's a full day shooting before any post-processing and I can't imagine that they will make much in return. I don't need hundreds of shots of folk I don't know and who will never thank me, so I'll stick to shooting for friends who will show some appreciation.