Wednesday, 18 February 2009

Practice Makes Perfect- Learning and Remembering Photography Part II

A quick follow up from the last post about working out my lighting set-up for an upcoming shoot beforehand. The reason I spent the time working out the lighting a week before the shoot was because I had a preconceived idea how I wanted the light to look. I managed to work out how to get the light I was looking for beforehand so I can spend my time on Saturday fine tuning it, not working it out in the first place.

This also gave me time to process the images and have a look at how they will look after processing. A few things came out of the shoot apart from where to put the lights and what power to have them on. After processing them in Lightroom I was happy with the light but not totally happy with the finished product. So one change I will make for the weekend is to shoot them at 800 ISO. This will do two things, firstly it will conserve flash power as I will be using 3/4 less power each frame which will conserve batteries big time. Very important when working in the field using three SB units and four pocket wizards for a total of 22 AA batteries (I will take 20 fully charges spares too). But the main reason for the ISO bump is to get a grainer look to the images. I will even go to the extent of slightly over sharpening the images to give a edgier look to the files.

Another think I learnt was about my camera. I use flash a lot, mainly off camera in manual mode. I rarely need to use the AF illumination where the flash sends out a few beams of light to help with the auto focus but as this will be shot at night the AF illumination will come in handy but I found out (remembered) that it doesn't work in continuous servo AF mode, it has to be in single servo AF. This only took a minute to remember that but it was a minute of staring at my camera thinking 'What's up?' Doing this in front of your waiting model is not good form so chalk that one down for next time.

So if you have an important project and have the time it pays to practice. ( I used to practice changing film to keep my hand in the game for shooting action and not miss any frames!) This is just as important as keeping you eye in too.

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