One dimension of photography I haven’t properly explored until now is portraiture. With my diary a little clearer after a hectic few months, I decided it was time to get some experience. Thus I arranged with Helen Stephens, a Southampton-based professional model, to shoot for an hour outside the Guildhall. My wife, Rachel, came along to hold a reflector and flash for me.
Helen wore her beige overcoat for the first few shots. It complemented the sandstone pillars very well.
Helen’s faraway expression works really well against the blurred background in this shot:
Then we moved on to shoot without her overcoat:
This shot also worked well as a mono conversion, for which I increased the exposure and contrast:
The same is true of this shot:
Going mono removed the purple cast that appeared on some of the photos. This came from filters on floor-level lights inside the portico.
Helen also posed for a few full-length shots, of which I think this is the best:
Then we moved on to a nearby park and started using off-camera flash for more dramatic lighting:
I’m really pleased with both the sharpness and separation produced by my prime lens, the Canon 85mm 1.8 EF.
And to finish, a shot with Rembrandt lighting:
For more information about Helen, visit helenstephens.co.uk. She’s currently on a mission to raise £10,000 for Young Epilepsy.