Monday, October 5, 2009

Autumn Knocking….Banging at my Door………

Is it just me or is time flying by really fast? It seems in a blink of an eye a week goes by. I can hardly believe that fall is already here, confirmed by the colors all around: reds, oranges and yellows blazing brightly against the moody sky. Breathtaking! I think in a couple of weeks it will be perfect for photographing landscapes. (Don’t forget your tripod so you can take several shots to stitch a pan.) Portraits will also look amazing in a bed of red and orange maple leaves, soft golden light highlighting your subject. For some fun shots grab a step ladder for a higher perspective of little ones playing in a bed of beautiful colors. (Try not to center your subject to make for a dramatic portrait.)
To kick in the fall, my family and I went to a local pumpkin patch that had much potential for wonderful backgrounds to take portraits, like golden cornstalks and red blueberry bushes that look like fire. The only downside was that this particular weekend there were a lot of people and trucks everywhere; there was a big pumpkin contest happening, and I mean big! You should have seen the sight: pumpkins of various sizes and every shade of orange. And the shapes! There was one pumpkin in a shape of a huge bean bag. The kids got to sit in it and I got to take pics. There was also a corn maze that is taller than 6 feet—I was feeling a little claustrophobic—and it seemed to go on forever. The maze is endless. We had to take the emergency to get out; maybe next year we’ll make it to the end. The kids had a blast, and I had fun taking shots. The weather was perfect—not too windy not too bright. The sky was covered in rolling clouds with hints of the sun trying to shine through them: perfect natural lighting.

I took a few photos of my little trolls, knowing I would have to run the images through Photoshop to remove trucks, barns and temporary tattoos. The last part I don’t like so much; it was tedious and boring. Check out my before and after; can you spot the difference?

I really wanted to create drama and not over-process the images. I think I achieved the look I was after. I’m really happy with the results, and the kids are happy as well.
Eventually, I would like to solely use flashes (just bought one, a Canon 580 EX II) to create dramatic lighting and just use Photoshop for tweaking.

Now some may be wondering about the Alien Bee ring flash I purchased way back. The ring flash offered great lighting with cool effects. I really loved the lighting. The only thing about this ring flash was that it wasn’t practical for me. The bulk frustrated me, and I had to be practical, so I traded it in for the Speedlite. Recently, I did come across the Oribis ringflash. Looking into it.

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