michael_mancilla Platinum

Getting ready to play Monopoly

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Behind The Lens

This image is from a photo session with St Merrique in Los Angeles, CA at the FD Photo studio in the flower/garment district of downtown LA. Photo taken almost 1 year ago in February 2017.
This was in the late afternoon towards the end of the session, around 5 PM
It is a two light set up, one large strip box 45 degrees approximately and just out of the camera frame further away from the model to make it as a rim light. The other light was a beauty dish to my left and about 3 feet away, aimed straight at the model's face with a diffuse sock over it. In this case the strip box was the key light as it is almost 2 stops higher that the beauty dish as a fill light on her face. I wanted the rim on her body to be prominent and to make it an overall high key image.
Shot was taken with a Hasselblad H4X with the HC 100mm f2.2 lens, it is typically a portrait lens, however, if I have the space I tend to use it for almost all my shots with the Hasselblad, really love that lens. The digital back is a Phase One P30+ it is now an 11 year old processor, however, just because it is old and there is newer technology out now it does not mean it is not an outstanding back that provides files with a lot of detail and fantastic latitude. For lights I used my Profoto D1 500 watt light in the Mola beauty dish the 22 inch Demi model. The strip box was fitted with the Alien Bee's 800 from FD studio.
I saw a video a couple of years back of a group called 4 Non Blondes, the lead singer had a steam punk look with a top hat, I thought it was a cool look that would look good in a glamour session. I keep notes on ideas for shoots or specific photos to be used at a later time. I took advantage of St. Merrique's amazing legs and her overall look that I tried it with her.
Minimal post processing, in Capture One I lowered the highlights just a bit, applied curves and levels, used the color smoothing section to even out skin for the whole body. In photoshop CS6 some light skin retouch . Cloned out a couple of ugly cracks in the wall, cropped the image to my taste.
In my camera bag
My Hasselblad H4X along with HC100mm f2.2 lens, Phase One P30+ digital back, Sony a99 with Minolta 35mm f1.4 along with Minolta 200mm f2.8, a Sekonic L-358 light meter, if I'm shooting film also I will add 2 film backs for the Hasselblad and rolls of Kodak Portra 400 for color prints and Fujifilm Acros 100 for B&W. If I needs lights I will take my Profoto D1 and a couple of Nikon SB28 flashes and 4 pocket wizards. To be clear I don't take all my equipment all of the time, it depends of the situation. So you can say a combination of all of the above.
If I can presume to give advice to anyone, I would tell them to get off automatic modes, use manual settings; you must be the one that controls all the aspect of the photo, it is true that new cameras have all of the technology to get the shot, however, it can not give you the vision for the image that you want. Make sure you get it right in the camera don't think Photoshop will save you later, (Not that I'm saying my photo is perfect, it is a matter of what you like and want in your image). Lastly, have fun, if the image is not want you wanted make adjustments and take another photo, and you don't have to spend hundreds or thousands of dollars to get good photos, an apsc camera and a nifty fifty f.18 can do the trick with some lights, my image could have been created with that basic equipment, I guess what I'm saying is it not the equipment it is your vision and passion that will get you the results you are looking for.

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