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Thread: Musician Friend

  1. #1
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Musician Friend

    I shot this on Sunday night, in the basement where my friend lives and records. He's going to use one of the photos from this session for his next CD. We started out fairly conservative and then ended up all blurry. Blur is my friend and he liked it too.

    Shot with my EOS 1D, one tungsten track light, a bare bulb in the ceiling, and one Canon 550EX triggered with a radio slave.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Musician Friend-kenny_basement.jpg  
    Photo-John

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  2. #2
    has-been... another view's Avatar
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    Very cool - breaks the rules and works well. Question - how did you do the blur?

  3. #3
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    The Blur

    Flash controls the exposure on Kenny and the shutter speed controls the exposure in the rest of the image. My shutter speed was 1/5th sec and I moved the camera on purpose to get the blur. There was a lot of experimenting with balancing the flash exposure, flash direction, diffusion, shutter speed, and Kenny's positioning. I shot half a gig of photos and there were lots of neat ones to choose from. I like this one the best - for now.
    Photo-John

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  4. #4
    don't tase me, bro! Asylum Steve's Avatar
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    Good job with a tricky technique...

    John,

    As you've discovered, this kind of flash & blur technique works really well with musicians, IF you can pull it off...

    I'd like to see some of the other shots from this session. I like this one, and overall I think it works pretty well, it's just that the flash is a bit too harsh for my taste. This is entirely a personal thing, but I always aproach this technique by seperating the lighting elements, making sure they each work alone, then taking a critical look at how they blend together.

    So, I guess what I'm saying is that if I took the flash lighting of the subject by itself, I think I would want to soften it a bit. Still, you guys know what you were going for, so it's really not a criticism per se.

    Once again you make good use of a digital workflow. Imagine shooting this a half day with film, not knowing if you have anything until you get it back from the lab a few days later...

    Quote Originally Posted by Photo-John
    I shot this on Sunday night, in the basement where my friend lives and records. He's going to use one of the photos from this session for his next CD. We started out fairly conservative and then ended up all blurry. Blur is my friend and he liked it too.

    Shot with my EOS 1D, one tungsten track light, a bare bulb in the ceiling, and one Canon 550EX triggered with a radio slave.
    "Riding along on a carousel...tryin' to catch up to you..."

    -Steve
    Studio & Lighting - Photography As Art Forum Moderator

    Running the Photo Asylum, Asylum Steve's blogged brain pipes...
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  5. #5
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Funny you should mention it

    Steve-
    It's funny you should mention the harsh flash. I planned to use my little flash softbox. But my old flash is in the shop getting repaired and my new one doesn't have any velcro on it. So no softbox. I tried bouncing it but I was getting too much light on the guitars. But in the end I'm very happy with this. Not to say that the softbox wouldn't have been better. But the hrshness sort of adds to the basement feel, I think.
    Photo-John

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  6. #6
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    I like It be good on CD

  7. #7
    has-been... another view's Avatar
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    I agree with you guys on the flash - maybe just a bit harsh, but not a problem. I asked about the blur because it looked like camera movement, but I didn't figure your friend would be so sharp with a "slow sync flash" type shot. He must have been far enough away from the bare bulb. I didn't know if this kind of blur was something you could do in photoshop. Great job, John.

  8. #8
    don't tase me, bro! Asylum Steve's Avatar
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    Now we're talking advanced light control...

    Quote Originally Posted by Photo-John
    Steve-
    It's funny you should mention the harsh flash. I planned to use my little flash softbox. But my old flash is in the shop getting repaired and my new one doesn't have any velcro on it. So no softbox. I tried bouncing it but I was getting too much light on the guitars.
    Like I said, if you're happy with it, it's fine, but it's situations like this that emphasize the benefits of really having a multitude of light control gear.

    Much of studio lighting is a two step process. You first figure out how to AIM and DEFINE the light, IOW get the quality and basic direction the way you want it. You then figure out how to CONFINE that light to the areas of the shot that are important, and that part is often a SUBTRACTIVE process.

    Anyway, that's a big reason many pros or studios have a large assortment of things like flags, dots, scrims, panels, reflectors, etc., etc., etc.
    "Riding along on a carousel...tryin' to catch up to you..."

    -Steve
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  9. #9
    Sleep is optional Sebastian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Asylum Steve
    Like I said, if you're happy with it, it's fine, but it's situations like this that emphasize the benefits of really having a multitude of light control gear.

    Much of studio lighting is a two step process. You first figure out how to AIM and DEFINE the light, IOW get the quality and basic direction the way you want it. You then figure out how to CONFINE that light to the areas of the shot that are important, and that part is often a SUBTRACTIVE process.

    Anyway, that's a big reason many pros or studios have a large assortment of things like flags, dots, scrims, panels, reflectors, etc., etc., etc.
    Steve,

    You have no idea how much the above post just clarified for me. Thanks!
    -Seb

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  10. #10
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Subtractive Process

    Steve-
    "Subtractive Process" - that's a very illuminating (heh, heh) term. When i used to go to the track I learned to think of braking not as stopping, but rather, as removing speed. That kind of language paradigm shift can make a big difference in the way we perceive and approach problems.

    So, yeah. I was thinking subtractively. But I didn't have many tools available. At first I was pointing the flash at the ceiling with the wide-angle diffuser out for some fill-bounce. That was working well on Kenny, but there was way too much bounced light on the guitars. Those images are much more even and conservative. They're nice, but they don't have nearly as much atmosphere. If only I had of had some velcro so I could use the softbox!

    Damnit! Now you're making me think I should go back and reshoot.
    Photo-John

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  11. #11
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    An Earlier Version

    Here's one of the earlier versions, shot bouncing the flash off the ceiling. And I like this one too, although it's very different from the other one I posted.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Musician Friend-kenny_basement1.jpg  
    Photo-John

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  12. #12
    shake it like a polaroid picture berrywise's Avatar
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    I like the first better than the second

    I think you made a good decision for the final. I like how he is looking at us and in a way interacting with the viewer. If this was maybe for anything but something just about him I might lean the other way with a shot of him playing and not paying attention to the camera.

    I, like everyone else, dig the blur and it makes a very static shot seem to come alive.

    The only thing that bugs me, yes call me sick in the head, is the guitar strag growing from his crotch.


    -scott

  13. #13
    Member Blandar's Avatar
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    Re: Musician Friend

    If your musician friend wants to get popularity, you should tell him about the service which sells spotify plays. You can click here and see how everything can be done. Many talented people just don't know about this opportunity and they use old-fashioned ways of promotion. You can change it

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