commerciële fotografie « Jurgen Doom

Model photography – shoot with Sylviane Alliet – last setup

3 February 2011 om 10:54 door Jürgen geplaatst in de categorie Flashlight,fotografie,photographer,Photography,Portrait

To end the shoot with Sylviane Alliet, a TFCD project in which we took a number of types of pictures we wanted to make  but that we can not always do so when working for an assignment, we we decided to end the day with some images that had a rougher look.

Therefore we went to the “basement” – yes, I can say that I spent some time in the basement with Sylviane – to find a background that matched the character role that Sylviane was playing.

The “industrial background” is illuminated with a Nikon SB900 flash with a CTB filter (to get a cooler atmosphere), while Sylviane was lit by a Nikon SB900 through an umbrella.  If I’m not mistaken, I even made it a little warmer with a quarter CTO. Sylviane is also lit from behind, to create some backlight. The result is shown below.

What have we finally learned from this and previous shoots.

1. that it is possible to use a backpack of equipment (Nikon D3s, 4 SB900 flashes, stands, umbrellas and gels) at a location and still get different setups that are fundamentally different

2. that working with a professional model is just fantastic

3.that  you do not need much material to make different kind of images

4. that occasionally doing a TFCD is great fun in order to try a few things with or without great results

At the end of the day both Sylviane and I were ready for the scrap heap, but we were pretty happy with the cooperation and results. There are now plans to do something similar, but in an outdoor location …. and I am already looking forward to it!

model photography
model fotografie – shoot met Sylviane
model fotografie - shoot met Sylviane
model fotografie – shoot met Sylviane
model fotografie - shoot met Sylviane

model fotografie - shoot met Sylviane
model fotografie – shoot met Sylviane

Model photography – shooting with Sylviane Alliet part 3

1 February 2011 om 11:10 door Jürgen geplaatst in de categorie Flashlight,fotografie,Gear,Photography,Portrait

Being able to shoot a professional model such as Sylviane is always a lot of fun for a photographer. By working with someone who knows how photography works and how to behave in front of the lens, the photographer shouldn’t ecnounter too many difficulties any more in order to make good images.

This is of course partly true, because for the setup for our third part of the shooting session I was still a looking for atmosphere, lighting, composition and artistic interpretation. The “Yogaposes” that we had in mind were not so simple to implement, and many artistic and technical constraints made this - certainly for me - the hardest of the four setups that we’ve done.

The images were created with 3 or 4 flashes (in Sylviane’s living room), which in our first series of images were positioned so that I wanted to create a a dark and intimate atmosphere. But as Roeland on his blog a while back so well put it, the result was ultimately not entirely as I wanted and I did not immediately see many solutions to  quickly improve things. Frustrating!

yoga, wellness & zenn
yoga, wellness & zenn

Therefore we decided to change the whole look and feel of the image by turning everything around (angle, orientation, lightin, mood, etc  ….).  Hey, it’s our party and we cry if we want to!

yoga, wellness & zenn
yoga, wellness & zenn
yoga, wellness & zenn
yoga, wellness & zenn
yoga, wellness & zenn
yoga, wellness & zenn
yoga, wellness & zenn
yoga, wellness & zenn

The result was much more pleasing and we ultimately got some interesting and good shots out of it.

But watch this space, for our last series of shots we’ll go “down and dirty”!

Photographers, are they perverts or hard workers?

26 January 2011 om 11:44 door Jürgen geplaatst in de categorie Commercial,fotografie,Photography,Portrait

I get the next question or comment every now and then:

“Wow, being a photographer is really cool. All those handsome models to take a photograph from. All these naked women in front of your lens. All those photographs of nude models …. Have you ever ever felt the urge to uh, to uh …. .. And what does your wife think of this, all that female beauty, within your reach? “.

Well, what does my wife think of that?

Well, firstly, being a photographer is indeed really cool. For years I worked hard (I repeat, “years of hard work”) – after years of study in addition – to get where I am now, a professional photographer who was initially interested in photography and who has finally been able to make a living out of being a professional freelance photographer  (and in the process lost a hobby, but that is more than made up by my interest in music, playing guitar and wine, but this whole aside).

Secondly, we, freelance photographers, photograph certainly not every day (professional) models – unless it is your specialization and shoot nothing else but fashion and models. But there are not many photographers who do that.

In my line of work I photograph just about everyone, young and old, beautiful and ugly (whatever “beautiful” and “ugly” may mean), thick and thin, sympathetic and downright boring or annoying.

Thirdly, you will not believe it, but if I had a supposedly “smart” model to photograph (with or without a little or no fabric to the body), or if I have to take pictures of a series of potted plants, or pack shots of cosmetics or construction workers on a wharf, or architectural photographs in a modern building, or ….. in a way that remains more or less all the same to me. The same, you say? Indeed, the same, namely “how do I compose my image “, “how do I adjust my exposure’, “how do I guide the model”, “what background I choose”, “what angle do I choose,” “what does my customer want”, etc, etc …. As a photographer you are busy thinking about all those things at once, leaving very little brain activity remaining for pervert thoughts or comments, in order to get your subject between the sheets.

And that’s often the tone of the comments or questions from people when they talk about fashion photography and model photography.

Really, people. As a photographer, we are really busy with our profession. We work really hard to make images for customers with the intention that customers use the images to their case forward.

And the last thing we think about is to get the model in to our bed.

And my wife’s happy with that!

Model photography – model shoot with Sylviane Alliet part 2.1

24 January 2011 om 11:01 door Jürgen geplaatst in de categorie advertising,Camera,Commercial,Flashlight,fotografie,Gear,Photography,Portrait,Software

In the previous blog post about the shoot with Sylviane Alliet, I talked about the images we made in the doctor / dentist / assistant / medical sphere.

Because we don’t  take pictures with a model and the right attributes every day to (especially in the medical field), we decided to quickly do a few shots of Sylviane against a different background. That way we could get some extra mileage out of the attributes.  We did this by simply moving the flashlights to another location (right around the corner from our previous shots), with as a result a set of pictures which breathed a totally different atmosphere.

The pictures were taken with 2 Nikon SB900 flashes in slave mode, triggered by a Nikon SB900 on camera - the Nikon CLS system. One flash was standing outside, behind the door, the other stood between between the photographer and Sylviane, but aimed at a corner in the room. In other words, the light was “bounced” or reflected by the white walls and ceiling, so to get an even lighting over Sylviane.

All photos were taken with a Nikon 85mm prime on f2 (because I simply liked to workon f2. Nah).

The result looks like this (images post-processed in Lightroom 3.3).

Shoot with Sylviane - medical

Shoot with Sylviane - medical theme

Shoot with Sylviane - medical theme

Shoot with Sylviane - medical theme

From here on I added some warmth to the image by placing a full cut CTO gel over the outside flash.  Hence the impression of sunlight coming through the door and the warm atmosphere.

Shoot with Sylviane - medical theme

Shoot with Sylviane - medical theme

Shoot with Sylviane - medical theme

Shoot with Sylviane - medical theme

Shoot with Sylviane - medical theme

Shoot with Sylviane - medical theme

Next blog post will be much more “zen” … promised!

Model photography – shoot with Sylviane – part 2

19 January 2011 om 21:19 door Jürgen geplaatst in de categorie advertising,Camera,Commercial,Flashlight,Gear,Photography,Portrait

In my previous blog post I talked about the shoot with Sylviane. The purpose of the shoot was to further the portfolio of both Sylviane and me with work that usually doesn’t fit in commercial work.

For the second set of photos, we moved to a dental and medical practice. Well, in our imagination anyway, because in reality it was in Sylviane’s kitchen. We made a series of photos taken in  an environment of a dentist, nurse and surgery and the atmosphere had to refer to a doctor / physician.

The photos are all taken with a Nikon D3s, a 50mm and 85mm (both f1.4) and 3Nikon SB900 flash, controlled via the Nikon CLS system (flash on the camera that controls the other flashes). Behind Sylviane you see a white box / cabinet with glassdoors, which could perfectly serve in a medical practice, especially when you photograph them with large aperture. The colors in the photographs are from color filters that are placed over the flash heads.

model fotografie
model fotografie
model fotografie
model fotografie
model fotografie
model fotografie
model fotografie
model fotografie
model fotografie
model fotografie
model fotografie
model fotografie
model fotografie
model fotografie
model fotografie
model fotografie
model fotografie
model fotografie
model fotografie
model fotografie
model fotografie
model fotografie

Using Nikon SB900 speedlights for creative photographic lighting

12 November 2010 om 13:16 door Jürgen geplaatst in de categorie advertising,Camera,Commercial,Flashlight,Gear,Photography,Sports,Uncategorized,workshop fotografie

As an advertising photographer, creating images for clients that will make their products look good, I try to be creative with my photography and my gear.  Let’s look at an example.

Image of a gymnast.

Image of a gymnast.

Imagine a huge indoor sports hall.  Imagine the yellow/green illumination these sports halls typically have and that cast an “ugly” type of light on the subjects (which you don’t want, you want your subject to look good).  Imagine the cluttered background one usually gets in such sport halls, which will destroy the impact of the image ……

Situation - available light.

Situation - available light.

As a photographer I try to overcome problems – let’ call them challenges – instead of creating them.

When I had to photograph a young sportster, doing all sorts of neck-braking, leg-twisting, arm-bending exercices on a gym device, I had to be creative to get a shot of it that could be used as a double spread in the brochure.

Firstly, I figured I wanted to eliminate the natural lighting of the sports hall.  Using a shutter speed of 1/250th at ISO 100 on a Nikon D3x (24Mpix) was good enough at f 4 to eliminate the ambiant light.  That means, if you would not use flash, you would end up with a dark (black) image at these settings.

Next step was to bring in the Nikon SB900 speedlights.  I used 3 of them.  The main flash comes from directly above me (on-axis with the lens) but shot through a softbox in order to soften the light.  It provides the main light for the subject, but because we are working very close to the subject and far away from the background, that light doesn’t reach the background, so it remains black (or under exposed).

The last step was to position two SB900 speedlights behind the subject, at either side of the girl, and aimed towards her.  Those light provide the rim lighting, which make her stand out from the background even more.

The image was ultimately used as a double spread in the SPORTA brochure as shown above.

All shots were taken on the Nikon D3x, using a 85mm f1.4 lens and using the Nikon CLS lighting system.

Alternative image of the gymnast.

Alternative image of the gymnast.

Nikon CLS system is a fantastic system to work on-location.  It’s versatile, works well, easy to handle and learn and enables a photographer to be very flexible in his work and quickly adapt to different situations and lighting conditions.  I use it all the time in my photography.

If you want to learn it as well, I run workshops on photography and flash photograph (also for users of other brands).

More to come,

Jürgen

Brico Cover – Pirate meets Princess meets Photographer

2 August 2010 om 14:49 door Jürgen geplaatst in de categorie Camera,Commercial,Photography,Uncategorized

Photography is an expensive occupation.  Children are expensive too.  A combination of being a “photographer with children” is hugely expensive ….

But sometimes the two come together and work well for each other.  Like that one time when I had to photograph the cover of Brico magazine, a 3-monthly that DIY-hardware store Brico publishes.

The ad-agency asked me if I could help finding children between 5 and 8 for an article about a grandfather who had build a “hut” up in a tree for his grand childrren.  Ideally they would be dressed like a pirate, a princess, a “what-have-you” “you-name-it” ….

Myrte, my daughter of 7, just loves getting dressed as a princess and for Johannes, my 5 year old boy, being a pirate comes second nature to him.

And so it happened that they finally figured on the cover of a magazine. Mind you, for Johannes it was already his second appearance on the cover of a magazine.  The first time was when he was about 3 months old.  But the money I made with that cover has long been blown on nappies, etc …. So it was time to top up on some “money credits” ….

Cover of Brico magazine, featuring my two kids.

Cover of Brico magazine, featuring my two kids.

This image was photographed on a Nikon D3x and a 24-70mm 2.8, ISO200, F5.6 at 1/100.  We used one SB900 speedlight (which we litteraly had to hang in a tree in order to get the right angle), gelled with a full cut CTO gel and complemented the lighting with a golden reflector.  The flash was triggered through Nikon’s CLS system.

This image is half of a double spread that ran in the inner pages of the magazine.

This image is half of a double spread that ran in the inner pages of the magazine.

So finally I’ve been able to use them to make me some money, instead of costing me money.  But hey, that money has already been spent …. on a new princess and pirate outfit!

What do photographers earn?

29 April 2010 om 14:46 door Jürgen geplaatst in de categorie Commercial,Flashlight,Portrait

What do you earn as a photographer?

Well, that depends upon the angle you look at it.

As a freelancer, earning a living out of making photographs, I would welcome Euros, Dollars, Pounds and even Yenn or Ruble would do, thank you.

As an amateur, you’re probably very happy with any kind of publication in virtually any type of magazine in return of credits (which is, believe me, nothing to impress your bank manager when it comes to paying your mortgage)

Or for the aspiring photographer, you may well be happy with any kind of encouragement, friendly words or pat-on-the-back type thing.

Well, let me tell you, I was recently comissioned to photograph the person in charge of a company that imports grape fruit.  After it had taken me quite some effort to convince the person that I was there to photograph him – and not the stacks of grape fruit in the depot – he finally started to co-operate.  I set up two stands with a Nikon SB900 speedlight, triggered with Nikon CLS system (on-camera speedlight on a D3s).   I underexposed the atmosphere in the depot, because it had the horrible neon -fluorescent lights which turns everything – and everyone – green.  Not something to brag about.   I had one light – standing at the far end of the lane of crates – lighting the creates in the background, and one light through an umbrella on the person to photograph.  Easy setup that works well – and fast!

But then it happened, when after the shoot was finished, he presented me with the very same piece of grape fruit he was holding during the photo shoot.

Portrait photography - what do photographers earn?

Portrait photography - what do photographers earn?

So, when you pose that question about houw much photographers do earn, remember that it can be anything from cold cash, through respect, credits and sometimes …. grapefruit.

Portret fotograaf – Leuven

om 13:59 door Jürgen geplaatst in de categorie Commercial,Flashlight,Portrait
Portret foto - keuze van de fotograaf.

Portret foto - keuze van de fotograaf.

Als portretfotograaf heb ik zo mijn eigen gedachten ….

Een portret maken op een eerder druilerige regendag, ‘t is niet iets waar veel fotografen op zitten te wachten.

Ik anders wel. Niets zo eenvoudig als je belichting te regelen op een dag waar de zon je geen parten speelt.

Zo verging het me ook bij de portretsessie van een prof aan het “sportkot” van de KUL. Grijze lucht, geen zon, fris windje en enkel een atletiekpiste om iets mee te doen. Verder waren aanwezig: 2 Nikon Speedlights van het SB900 type, een paar CTO kleurenfilters, een koppel pocket wizards, een 85mm tilt-shift lens, een Nikon D3s en nog wat attributen als daar zijn staanders, fototas, hoodman loupe, etc …..

De rest is geschiedenis.

Hieronder mijn favoriete beeld in de reeks ….

In de layout van het tijdschrift paste deze beter (+ het is meer close-up).

Portret fotografie, beeld dat uiteindelijk in publicatie verschenen is.

Portret fotografie, beeld dat uiteindelijk in publicatie verschenen is.

Portrait photography

8 April 2010 om 15:19 door Jürgen geplaatst in de categorie Commercial,Flashlight,Portrait

As a portrait photographer it’s an honour to photograph the portrait of the editor in chief of a magazine.  I had already spoken several times with Lieve over the phone when she comissioned me to photograph for her magazine, OKRA.  But this time it was different, when Lieve asked me to take her portrait for the “edito” of the magazine.

We met at the offices of OKRA, where we choose a location for the imatges to be taken.  I set up 3 flashlights (type Nikon SB900, triggered with a an SB800 via the Nikon CLS system).  One is lighting Lieve through an umbrella, one is a backlight, separating Lieve from the background, which is lit by a third strobe.  This is the resulting photograph:

Portrait photography with the help of 3 portable strobes.

Portrait photography with the help of 3 portable strobes.

By changing the angle from which we photographed Lieve by 90°, I was able to quickly change the look and feel of the image.  The next image is only lit by 2 strobes.

Portrait photography for magazine.

Eventually the image ended up in the magazine in the editorial section, where it will probably find its home for the next few years to come …

Editorial of OKRA magazine with the portrait of Lieve.

Editorial of OKRA magazine with the portrait of Lieve.

Als fotograaf met een speciale affiniteit met portretfotografie is het altijd een hele eer om een portretfoto te mogen maken voor het editoriaal van een tijdschrift. Dergelijke foto wordt niet één, niet twee, maar meerdere keren gebruikt op de eerste binnenbladzijde van een tijdschrift. Daarom vind ik het altijd wel een eer om dit te mogen fotograferen.

Zo ook met Lieve die aan het hoofd staat van de redactie van OKRA. We hadden elkaar al regelmatig gesproken aan de telefoon, waarbij ze me altijd “op pad” stuurde om foto’s te maken, maar deze keer was het om van Lieve zelf een portretfoto te maken.

Het eerste beeld werd gemaakt in de kantoren van OKRA (ergens in een ruimte waar je even kan “ontspannen”). Een driepuntsbelichting zorgde ervoor dat Lieve enerzijds zacht licht langs voren kreeg (door een paraplu), een “haarlichtje” die haar rechterschouder (links voor ons) doet oplichten en haar zo wat van de achtergrond doet loskomen, dat op zijn beurt het licht van een derde flits over zich krijgt.

Om wat variatie te krijgen in de opnamen draaiden we Lieve 90° en gebruikten we een tweepuntsbelichting, wat resulteerde in de tweede foto.  Het uiteindelijke resultaat, het edito met Lieve’s portret, vind je als laatste foto.

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