Rifqi's photo

My photographic journey


Winter around here usually makes me too lazy to go out and do stuff, staying inside where it’s nice and warm seems like a much more appealing prospect. Sometimes there’s no choice though, like when you have a new octabox that you want to try in different situations. So, I got my girls ready and dragged them out, along with a stand and my octabox.

There isn’t exactly an abundance of spectacular shooting locations around our flat but we do have a small area with some trees. If you’re careful with your framing you won’t even get any buildings in the background. That’s where we headed on a rather dull and overcast day. We typically have two kinds of winter: one where everything is white and the air is crisp and cold; another where the air is wet and cold in a different way and all the colours seem to have washed out. This day was the latter type of winter, though it wasn’t all that cold.

I kept things very simple with two LP160 in the octabox to camera left. There are more shots coming in the future with this exact same setup. I’m trying to get to know the light source and get different looks from it. In this instance I didn’t want the light to draw too much attention to itself, I wanted it to blend with the ambient light and only serve to bring out the subject a bit. That part worked allright. What didn’t work was the colours.

First attempt

Above you can see the edit I started working on. It might have been doable to keep it in colour if it wasn’t for her shoes and the handbag she insisted on bringing. She’s very cute with it but it kind of clashes with everything else. As the old saying goes: if you can’t work with it, kill it (I might have just made that up) – so I did.

It definitely worked a lot better in black and white and after some additional doging and burning I had a result I was actually kind of happy with. Not much else to say about this – I guess the lesson to be learned is that…eeh…black and white sometimes looks better than colour? Sorry, I really couldn’t think of anything catchy there.

Stay colourful (or not) and I’ll be back next week.



12 Responses to “B&W to the rescue”

  1. Carissa

    Nice shot. Compositionally speaking, do you think it might have been better to have moved your camera so that the dark tree trunk wasn’t directly behind her? Just a thought.

    • Rifqi

      Thanks. Yes, I do think that would be better. I didn’t reflect on it when I was actually shooting but it occurred to me as I was editing. I need a lot of practice with these kind of locations shoots, instead of just shooting portraits in the living room. I keep telling myself I need to get out more but so far I’ve been too lazy :p

      • Carissa

        I completely understand. I do my best to try to “see” everything, but we humans are very good at selective sight! I can’t tell you how many photos I’ve shot that appear to be perfect at the time, only to see a car or a hose or some such thing, I’ve heard it said that 95% of photography is moving furniture.

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