Category Archives: Studio

Giving Apple Pages a Try

Rubi_Fitness_02

A magazine spread-like document created in no time.

I really enjoy making this magazine spread using Apple’s word processor and document editor called Pages. Pages provides what I believe to be the bare minimum tools necessary to create quick presentations and then adds a few nice features like adding mirror reflection, page effects, etc.  But where I think Pages shine is on the fast learning curve and how intuitive the environment feels after a few minutes of use. I used box shapes to arrange where the text would be, then added the text and played with font style and sizes, changed the color schemes, and finished with a few touches like the reflection effect and the ball note above. I did based the layout on a few examples of actual magazine articles found o the web so there was almost no thought put on the design. But, hey, have you seen the magazine covers lately? They all are copies of their own past editions. If not Google it.

Bottom line, I will be using Apple Pages more and more. It offers just the right amount of tools necessary for most documents in an intuitive and easy to learn environment. Plus, it is all iCloud based so you can edit and finish on the go.

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Rubi Fitnes – B&W

Image

Just a simple single-light setup and a silver reflector.

The picture was shot indoors in my home studio. The only real trick to get the shot just the way I wanted was balancing the ambient light and strobe light to generate a dramatic light effect on the model while keeping the surroundings dark.

The shot was taken during the day with lots of lights coming through the windows and bouncing and getting diffused by the white studio walls. The light balance is achieved by selecting an appropriate f-stop that will get you a complete dark image when a picture of the model is taken in just ambient light. So set the speed at the camera’s flash sync speed, which for the X-E1 is 1/160th, and start taking pictures changing the aperture nay until you get a complete dark image. So, once this is achieved, then one starts playing with the power of the strobe, painting the model with light while keeping the background in the “dark.” This is achieved by using a rectangular soft box with a honeycomb grid to direct the light exactly where you want it. Once the light is set and the pose is placed, then one can make the final few slight adjustments to the aperture and power setting to get the finished shot.

LR and CS used to achieved mono and retouches.

The hardware: X-E1, 35mm XF, Alien Bees 800, Rectangular grid softbox, Silver reflector, and a couple Wireless triggers.

 

Grace

With just a little bit of planning, a levitation effect can easily be done 🙂 Adding a few effects to the picture and you get a very nice result.

The day was a little cloudy which made it challenging to capture the background image and the perfect pose with the same lighting. A little bit of work had to be done to the selected images to balance them correctly for the final composition. This is where RAW format shines.

What went into this shot? My X-E1, my not-so great Manfrotto tripod, my Macbook with CC, and what you see in the picture.

Portrait of Rubi

Another one from the Rubi Series. For this shot, we moved back to the white paper background. The setup included a key light to the models right and a hair light. The studio’s white walls acted as a reflector and helped retain details in the shadows.

The XE1 is an amazing camera which I enjoy a lot. Pair it with the 60mm XF Fujinon prime lens and you will be holding a very capable studio portrait system. I would love to have a faster flash sync body but the X-E1 speed is good enough for portraits at 1/180. Although, I am yet to have some luck using my strobes at the rated speed, I always have to go as low as 1/125. Nevertheless, the system delivers great, crip and brilliant pictures.

Shot with the X-E1 & 60mm XF Fujinon running the latest firmware at the time this post was published.

Paramount Lighting/Mono


Taken while studying Paramount lighting techniques, or Butterfly lighting because of the shape of the slight shadows achieved under the nose of the model. I had the model facing straight at the camera for most pictures taken during this session to really get a hold of the technique, once achieved, I asked the model to turn slightly to the left. With the light setup the same, I simply reduced the power on my single strobe to produce a much dimmer light and reduce the falloff around her.

Post processing involved skin, hair and eyes treatment, and Lr to turn the photo mono and add the final effects.

From the instance I saw the picture, I though I saw La Gioconda.

XE1/60mm XF – B800/Gold Reflector – Butterfly Lighting