jesssy
jesssy

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Did a fun themed shoot with a couple models and made them get completely soaked in the river for some shots at the end

Did a fun themed shoot with a couple models and made them get completely soaked in the river for some shots at the end
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Behind The Lens

Location
This photo was taken at a local provincial park called Fish Creek. It spreads through the entire city of Calgary with numerous access points all featuring different scenery and various path to the river. This image was taken at one of the little paths to an area of the river that forms a pool before continuing on down stream. Fish Creek is by far my favourite place for location shoots because each area is so diverse with so much to offer unlike a typical city park. There is forested areas of both deciduous leafy trees as well as conifer pine trees, beautiful vantage points overlooking the river, vast landscapes of open fields full of flowers and tall grass as well as several areas with historic man-made buildings including a barn.
Time
This image was taken later on in the day that originally intended. We had met at the park just as a storm had rolled in and ended up spending about an hour waiting in the car for the rain to die down. We ended up shooting at around 5pm on the chilly overcast July day with image being taken towards the end of our shoot at 5:45pm. Usually I start shooting closer to 6pm however with the dark overcast sky we aimed to start sooner since there was very little light coming through the clouds
Lighting
I love shooting portraits on overcast days, especially if they include water, because the light is so soft and even on peoples features with no light being too drastic whether it be the shadows the highlights. Usually I prefer to shoot after 6pm on a sunny day to catch the warmth of golden hour but on overcast days I try to aim for around 3pm onwards since it gets darker much earlier when it's cloudy. There was no artificial light used for this image (or for any other image from this shoot) and I didn't even need to use my reflector to fill.
Equipment
This image was taken with my D5300 (which is now my back-up camera) and a 35mm 1.8 Nikkor lens right after I purchased it. This was my first shoot with the new lens and it certainly exceeded my expectations
Inspiration
I really wanted to do something a little different with these portraits and to have a little fun with them. We did some regular portraits in the fields beforehand and then when we went down to shoot by the river we decided to get a little crazy and submerse ourselves to see what we could come up with. For some of the other images from this shoot I was about knee deep in water to be able to achieve the look I wanted, however this image was taken on the river bank where the water wasn't any more than 6" deep. Ever since these images in the water I've continued to offer water shoots and they've become quite popular for those brave enough to withstand the cold Canadian water!
Editing
This particular image was imported into Lightroom where I used the Greater Than Gatsby Lightroom Presets as a base for the edit and then added my own few personal touches to it. I did some mild cloning on the skirt as there was places where it had come out of the water and I wanted a more uniform look to it. Otherwise there was very mild retouching done to this image as I prefer a more natural look.
In my camera bag
About 75% of the time I shoot with a Nikkor 50mm 1.4 on my camera (a Nikon D7200), then about 20% of the time I shoot with a Nikkor 105mm 2.8 lens on that same camera. The other 5% of the time I switch between my Nikkor 18-70mm and my Tamron 150-600mm depending on if I'm shooting sports or landscape/nature images.
Feedback
The best advice I can give to anyone wanting to try something similar is to just go for it and don't be afraid to get wet and dirty, and to just have fun with it! Also, overcast cloudy days I find to work best when shooting portraits in water because it prevents sky reflections in the water which lets you see the rocks below the surface. My favourite thing for editing is the Greater Than Gatsby presets as they provide an amazing base for your edit no matter what look you are going for and are so diverse - I use them for everything from sports to nature to weddings.

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