It’s time for the second of the photos that are meant to hang on each door in our flat and it’s the kitchen that turned into a studio today. As promised, this one is a bit fancier than the bedroom shot.
I wanted to do something a bit more stylized this time around and something that was in the line of some of the more humorous shots I’ve done before. So I went with the only route possible (not really), which was to nuke the little muppet with lots of light. There are four lights being used but, despite that, the whole thing is actually pretty simple. Our key light is a YN560 in softbox above the camera. I wanted the light to be symmetrical so I’m positioned right under the softbox. Staying on course with the symmetry, we then add a couple of rim lights, one from each side, both of them snooted LP160s. The reason for snooting the rims was that I didn’t want that light spilling all over the table and reflecting too much in the pot. At this point it looked pretty decent but I still felt that I wanted things to pop a bit more – enter background light.
For some reason I seem to be having trouble with lighting backgrounds, I’m just never quite satisfied with he results. Here it looks ok but I still think it could have been better. One of the reasons for the problems this time around was that the flash was acting up. I was using a YN560 with CTB gel and the trouble I had was that the zoom function stopped working. It was stuck at maximum zoom – which wasn’t a huge problem but I would still have liked to zoom it out a bit to illuminate more of the background – so I thought the flash was broken, seeing how that was a common problem with the early versions of this flash. Clever as I am, I of course waited until after the photo shoot to do some trouble shooting (actually it probably was a good idea, since my girls easily lose interest and patience). First I found that the zoom worked to some degree if I turned the flash on and off again. I then tried changing batteries and, wouldn’t you know it, it worked perfectly after that. An update of my old post about the YN560 was already forming in my mind but no, I can still recommend this flash and I guess I learned another sign for when it’s time to change the batteries. Still, it would have been good if I had figured that out while shooting. Had I done that, I would have zoomed it out at least one step and I should also have turned the flash head 90 degrees so it better fits the shape of the subject (longer vertically than horizontally).
On the whole the results still turned out ok though. It was also a rather uneventful photo shoot, considering my subject; put her in a pot and give her some vegetables and apparently she’s happy as can be. I might have to think of more concepts for photo shoots where I can put my little model in containers of different kinds, should make my life a lot easier.
I think one of these shots will look quite fine on our kitchen door, if only that pesky printer we ordered would grace us with its presence sometime this century…