STUDIO LIGHTING (part 2)

STUDIO LIGHTING (part 2)

In this case, this blog is about Studio Lighting Setup.

To begin with, in the last blog I wrote about the choice of studio lights available. As can be seen, in this blog, I am going into a bit more detail about setting the lights up.

Coloured/Dark backdrops.

Furthermore, as mentioned in the previous blog, for this type of backdrop four lights give you a good photo. In this case, my studio lighting setup for four lights is:-

  1. Main/key light.
  2. Fill light
  3. Hair light
  4. Backdrop light

Studio Lighting Setup

Main Light

In this case, the lights placed to one side of the camera to highlight the subject. Therefore this lights one side of the subject. In general, the light level for this would be around f8-f11.

Fill light

Generally speaking, you would place this light on the opposite side of the camera that the main light is on. In contrast, the role of this light is to put light into any shadow created by the main light. To clarify, it lifts the shadows and is not a strong light. In general, the light level for this would be f5.6-f8.

Hair Light

In addition, the hair lights placed at a high level over the top or at the side of the backdrop. In this case, this light lights the hair of the subject. The typical value for light level is f5.6

Coloured/Dark Backdrop Lighting

Accordingly, this lights placed low level behind the subject light the backdrop. In like manner, the light level is similar to the hair light.

Diagram for coloured/dark background STUDIO LIGHTING SETUP

White Backdrops

In this case, the main light and fill stay in place. At the same time, the hair and backdrop lights become redundant. With this in mind, place these lights to the side to illuminate the white backdrop. In this case, the lighting levels for the two side light is around f11. Equally important the lights must light the backdrop evenly.

Diagram for white background STUDIO LIGHTING SETUP

As an illustration, the diagrams above should help with you setting up your lighting for profile headshots. However, feel free to contact me if you require help.

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Studio Lighting

Studio Lighting (part 1)

Accordingly, studio lighting takes many forms. As a matter of fact, there are flashlights, continuous lighting and strobe lighting.

As a result, you have to consider which benefits you best.

Flash

In this case, Flashguns used off camera.

Picture of a gary fong diffuser on a camera Studio Lighting

Continuous Lighting

Likewise, as the name suggests the lighting does not change although it can be dimmed or brightened.

Picture of studio lighting continuous light

Strobe lighting

Accordingly, this normally has a modelling light that allows you to judge the final lighting setup. In addition, it has a strobe light that supplies the actual lighting for the subject when fired.

Picture of Strobe Lighting Studio Lighting

My Choice

When I started the business I choose Stobe Lighting.  For this reason. that it was a portable unit. In this case, the units are mains electricity or battery powered. You can also use a variety of light modifiers over the strobe to soften the light.

Set Up

Moreover, all forms of studio lighting require setting up for light level and colour balance. That is to say, to do this accurately you need a light meter and a using a grey card. If you don’t do this then you will get inferior results. Must be remembered, each light requires setting up individually to produce the effect the photographer is looking for.

You can use 1 or multiples of, in most cases, you would use more than 1. In this case, the ideal studio lights for portraits is four.

1. would be the main/key light.

2. would be your fill light

3. would be your hair light

4. would be your backdrop light

For this reason, these lighting setups are normally used for coloured backdrops.

White Backdrops

Generally speaking, if you’re using a white background, you remove the hair and backdrop lights. These then get placed pointing at the white backdrop.

In addition, with the lights in position and set to the levels required, the cameras set to the settings. In this case, the cameras set to the main/key light setting.

Watch out for part two. Want to know more then drop me a line.

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BUSINESS PORTRAIT

BUSINESS PORTRAIT

In the first place, a business portrait requires an expression that conveys realism, confidence, character and intensity. In this case, for a business portrait “Image is Everything” which makes this an art.

For this reason, it’s important to get your image right, have a look at this study from Photo Feeler

Conveying Confidence

Furthermore, the biggest challenge a photographer faces is getting people to relax and look “themselves” for a good business portrait. More often people are simply too tense or self-conscious when facing a camera to really let their guard down. Consequently, this causes a problem by denying a chance to capture their relaxed, smiling and natural expressions.

How To Create A Pleasing Business Portrait.

In the first place asking someone to smile for the camera, can look a little fake. Surprisingly a fake smile does not show in the eyes.

Likewise, to achieve the genuine smile you need to employ a few tactics, what’s the best way to do this?

For one thing, never ask people to smile or ask them to say “cheese”.

Relax

In like manner, it’s important that the photographers relaxed and smiling as its contagious. Consequently, if not the client will sense the uptight feeling and they won’t relax. For this reason, if they feel uptight this will show in the photos.

Therefore start by asking them to think about someone or something that makes them laugh. As a result of that way, you get a great reaction and a genuine smile.

Conversation

In the first place, get the conversation going, take the pressure off by chatting. Therefore, ask them what they like or dislike, what the weather is doing, what was there best night out. In other words, DO NOT stand behind the camera and not say a word.

Use Jokes.

Using jokes is a good way to break the ice. Beware though keep within acceptable limits. In this case, you can use corny jokes or even knock-knock.

Tongue Twisters

Surely you remember the fun you had at school with tongue twisters?  Prepare a couple on a card and ask the client to repeat them aloud. Then in front of the camera ask them to repeat them quickly. As a result, yes, you guessed it they will start to laugh/smile.

Compliments

Compliment them, find something that is part of them. Like their eyes instead of their outfit.

Sing

Furthermore, try and find out what music they like. During the session randomly start singing. See what happens when you sing the lyrics wrong?

Ask Them Not To Smile

As an illustration, make a point of asking the client to keep a straight face. Particularly if you’re still smiling. As a result, when you tell them not to smile they find it hard not to smile.

Lady smiling BUSINESS PORTRAITLady smiling with blonde hair BUSINESS PORTRAIT

Lady with glasses and smiling BUSINESS PORTRAIT

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On the positive side, I hope that you enjoyed this. For further information, contact Martin

 

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Hampshire Chamber Networking with the Tall Ships Youth Trust

The Gathering

In any event, the Hampshire Chamber Networking on October 19th took place with the Tall Ships Youth Trust Charity.

All things considered, the morning was crisp, with daylight breaking to a clear sky. To begin with, the event started by congregating of the attendees in the All Bar One restaurant at 07.30hrs.

Following a light breakfast of croissants and coffee, the attendees received a briefing from TSYT on the morning’s activity. As a result, with two yachts the groups allocated to Challenger 2 or 4. We then made our way to the pontoon for boarding.

In due time after the group photo, we boarded our respective challenger yacht.

Group photo Hampshire Chamber NetworkingGroup Safety Talk Hampshire Chamber Networking

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Preparation

Before we departed from the pontoon aw had a safety talk and advice on what not to do. We Then received lifebelts which we all put on. With the yacht ready we then left the berth.

Heading to sea

Forthwith, slipping the lines, we carefully with expert handling by the helmsperson left the berth and proceeded to sea. In this case, whilst leaving the harbour we were underway with the motor running. Once clear of the harbour entrance and the main shipping lanes thoughts turned to sails.

Under sail

At the same time as entering open water, the helmsperson gave instructions for hoisting of the sails.  As can be seen, volunteers (under instruction) from the Motley crew gave a hand setting the sails. With hoisted sails, and the gentle blowing wind filling them.  The helmsperson gave a demonstration of tacking with the wind. Other motley crew members then took turns at the helm.

Hoisting sails Hampshire Chamber Networking

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Returning to port

Accordingly, after a couple of hours at sea with a slight wind and beautiful sunshine, we started to return port. In the first place, the first task was to drop the sails. Therefore, the motley crew got to the task as a team. Accordingly with the sails lowered all helped to stow them away. Furthermore, with the sails stowed, the yacht squared away, permission from the Queens Harbour Master, we returned to the berth.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hampshire Chamber Networking

After tying up we retired to the Customs House pub for a talk on the charity and lunch.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you have enjoyed this adventure you can contact Martin for more information.

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Camera Equipment and accessories I use when undertaking a corporate headshot shoot.

Camera Equipment and accessories I use when undertaking a corporate headshot shoot.

When I undertake a headshot shoot the camera equipment and accessories I take are all portable. For this reason, it’s important for my clients to not be away from the workplace for too long. As a result, this saves them time and money by taking the studio to them.

Consequently, being away from the Office brings challenges with it. Therefore if you forget a piece of kit this could cancel the shoot. For this reason, I like to work from a list that I can alter depending on the shoot.

What do I take?

The important bits are:_
Camera
Lenses
Flash.

Picture of a flash gun Camera EquipmentPicture of a flash gun on a camera Camera EquipmentPicture of a soft box on a flash gun Camera Equipment

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Normally for these items, I double up so that if one item fails I have a backup, yes, it happens.

Accessories

A collapsible backdrop 2.4M x 2M with a choice of green or white background.
Three light stands, two for the lights and one for the backdrop.
Two-pocket wizards for remote control of the flash guns.
One pocket wizard controller to set the flash exposure remotely
Batteries for flash, pocket wizards and camera.
Battery charger for the camera, just in case.
Tripod to mount the camera on
Stand to mount the laptop on.
Laptop and leads.
Camranger to operate the camera remotely.
Lens cleaning cloth. These can be lifesavers when dust shows up.
Cables for cameras and lights.
Sandbag weights for light stands and backdrop
Reflectors. To help boost natural light.
Clamps of various sizes for holding down anything from fabric to backgrounds.
Bags and cases for everything.
Food and water. Snacks and hydration are keys to success on set.

In this case, the beauty of a list is that I take everything I require.

Accordingly, you have now had an insight into the equipment I take on a shoot. Therefore to book your session contact Martin to find out how he can improve your first impression.

 

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LinkedIn Photo

LinkedIn Photo

As a matter of fact, your LinkedIn photo identifies you to your viewers. With this in mind does your LinkedIn photo create the right impression?

For this reason, have you given much thought to your LinkedIn photo profile? In fact, have you updated it recently?

People who join LinkedIn do so because it is the largest professional networking site. Consequently, by making connections you expand your circle of businesses that could be looking for what you offer.

Woman on a white background LinkedIn Photo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

LinkedIn Photo

In the first place, your LinkedIn photo matters have a view of this piece of work by Alexander Todorov.  LinkedIn photos do matter, in fact, it is a powerful marketing tool.

For this reason professional headshots important, it is your first chance to impress the people that visit your profile. In other words, it creates your first impression. From the article by Alexander Todorov, it’s less than 1/10th of a second for someone to form that first impression.

For example is by using a selfie, a photo from a wedding/party, business people are doing themselves a disservice. That is to say, the square box on your profile is really important. In other words, go on give yourself a chance you never know who is looking.

Consequently, have you looked at the people your connected to? In addition to how many of those profile photos stand out as a good first impression?

Man in a hat LinkedIn Photo
 

 

 

 

 

 

What makes a bad LinkedIn photo that lets people down?

Selfies

Likewise, selfies have their place, but not where you are portraying yourself as a professional business person. Consequently, you are more likely to impress people with what you do, can do or what you have to offer. Thus a poorly taken selfie is unlikely to create that great impression.

Old photos

For one thing, giveaways are the hair, medallions, flairs, glasses, holding the brick phone these reveal a dated photo. As a result, what does that say to the viewer?

Accordingly, it portrays how seriously you take your online presence, viewers are likely not to take you seriously.

For this reason, I would recommend updating your profile every 2-3yrs.

Photos that look nothing like you in real life

Equally important is that your LinkedIn photo should reflect you as you are. When you first meet someone they want to see the person they have been looking at. Consequently if not they are likely to ask themselves “can I trust this person”.

Photos not showing the face clearly

By the same token, people make first impressions on what they see. For this reason, people have a tendency not to trust people whose face they can’t see. In this case, it could be something as simple as sunglasses. Therefore as the saying goes “the eyes are the window to the soul”. Also, don’t wear a hat that shields the face, people need to know who you really are.

Feeling awkward or false smiles

In my opinion, a natural smile looks far better than a forced or fake grin. When people enjoy themselves smiles come naturally, therefore, you look relaxed in a photo. For this reason, this is something that you probably won’t be able to replicate with a selfie.

In the first place to relax a subject its all about communication. Consequently the more communicating you do the more at ease you feel

LinkedIn Photo

The first thing to remember is your photo needs to show your personality and how relaxed you appear. Your face requires to be visible, so viewers can relate to you when they communicate.

Equally important is what you wear and how you prepare for this a whole new subject.

For your updated LinkedIn profile photo get in contact with Martin and book your session.

 

 

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Corporate Headshot

Corporate Headshot with a Cityscape Backdrop

First thing to remember is that a Corporate Headshot is a personal and a business selling tool. For this reason, it is important that you have a quality image that portrays you and your business. In this case, it’s this that forms the first impression of you.

CREATING YOUR FIRST IMPRESSION

To begin with, the start of the process is to capture your headshot. In this case, I attend your office and set up the lighting and a white or green collapsible background. As a result, the main point of this exercise is to capture a well-lit professional headshot.

For this reason by shooting at the client’s office means that I am in full control of the lighting. Consequently, the major benefit of this method ensures the headshot looks like it taken in an office.

Picture of a man with original background Picture of a man grey background Corporate HeadshotPicture of a man white background Corporate Headshot

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

POST PROCESSING

With this in mind, green is good for replacing the background of an image (as in green screen).

In this case, white is perfect for web-friendly images. Unfortunately, when you photograph against a white background you always have a hint of grey in it.

Then in post processing, I work on the photo to remove the remove the original background. The client is then able to have a white background or one of there choice.

As a result, the white background is highly acceptable for professional headshots. However, sometimes the client likes to match a current corporate website background colour and drop that in for the individual.

Picture of a man white background landscape Corporate HeadshotPicture of a man new background landscape Corporate Headshot

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Accordingly, the next process is to email the client a range of backgrounds. In this case for them to choose from and then we add these to the headshot.

When the client has selected the backgrounds(s) the subjects placed in the image. Indeed cares taken in placing the subject in the right place. That is finding the right place and ensuring the background is not pin sharp. Also reviewing the angle of the background ensuring it matches the subject.

For this reason, I ask the client to choose different backgrounds as not all of them will work. Therefore choosing the right one is about making the image look real.

Another great benefit once I have captured your headshot, you can review our photo library for a variety of backgrounds that you feel suits the headshot.  Accordingly, you could use these for different media or profile photographs.

Find out more about this service corporate headshot with a city backdrop contact Martin

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White Background Professional Portrait

White Backgrounds for Professional Headshots

Professional Headshots using White Backgrounds is undoubtedly a personal and professional business selling tool.  For this reason, the first image that viewers see helps to build rapport. As a result, it’s the start of “Like, Know and Trust”.

It must be remembered that until we meet, our professional headshot becomes our public face. To put it another way, your website and social media platforms are your extended workplaces.

Picture of a Man professional headshots

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Professional Headshots, Social Media and Web Use

For one thing, the internet and social media have probably been the largest drivers of white backgrounds. As a result, most templates for social media and websites profile images are white or off-white. For this reason, a professional headshot can integrate fairly seamlessly directly onto most websites and social media platforms.

As a result of the shift to web-based viewing, this has created the need for the background of headshots to be uniform. For this reason, white portrait backgrounds fit this bill very well. In addition, this helps in making them work best across viewing platforms.

Corporate Look Matching of Headshots

For the most part, companies wishing to maintain a ‘corporate look’ to their employee headshots, need consistency.  As an illustration, headshots taken on different days of different people in different locations can look totally different.  For this reason, the easiest way to consistently match looks is with plain white backgrounds.

Thus white backgrounds are the easiest most flexible background colour choice for larger companies, with constant new hires and multiple sites, wishing to maintain a uniform corporate look to their headshots.  They are also simpler for smaller operations, though not as much an issue on this score until a new hire is brought on board, or if one of the team members needs an update for a new look they may have, due to a new hairstyle or significant loss of weight, etc.

White Backgrounds are Distraction Free for Headshots

In reality, no matter if we shoot in black and white or colour, plain white is the most consistent distraction free background for headshots.

In black and white, the pure white tone is usually lighter than any skin tone and separates faces well from the background for most people. This is regardless of their race.

Corporate Photography

 

 

 

 

 

 

Small Screens

In reality the smaller the size of a headshot being viewed, the more pronounced the white background effect.  In fact, as the display screen gets smaller, the lack of distraction of the background becomes more critical. As a result, what looks a fantastic headshot on a full page size look indistinguishable on smartphone screens.

In particular environmental headshots, become hard to distinguish as size becomes smaller due to their many distracting elements.

A HEADSHOT ON A PURE WHITE SAYS, PROFESSIONAL,

When someone takes a selfie the pure white background is very difficult to emulate. That is to say, you usually end up with a greyish background. Under these circumstances, to have a pure white background is to use a professional or have it created post-production.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pure white backgrounds silently convey the powerful message that this headshot is a Professional Headshot of a Business Professional.

For your Professional Headshots give me a call and book your headshot session.

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BUSINESS CORPORATE EVENTS

BUSINESS CORPORATE EVENTS

A point often overlooked about Event Photography at business corporate events is that it is an extremely useful tool. In other words, it can help document and promote your business.

More and more businesses are holding events.

Generally speaking, these could be:-

  • celebration parties for their sales teams and distributors,
  • award ceremonies for target achievers,
  • product launch parties,
  • exhibitions,
  • shows,
  • conferences,
  • motivational or training seminars for the employees,
  • other marketing events.

BUSINESS CORPORATE EVENTS Picture of a lady driving a luxury carBUSINESS CORPORATE EVENTS Picture of a lady driving a simulator

 

 

 

 

 

 

BUSINESS CORPORATE EVENTS Picture of a group of peopleBUSINESS CORPORATE EVENTS Picture of awards being received

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

PUBLICITY

For this reason, events like these create maximum attention by increasing staff engagement, publicity and sales.

All things considered, events need handling well and are a huge public relations exercise. As a matter of fact, it is here that an event photographer can play a key role and help businesses. As a result of capturing the moments of importance, the PR pictures of the day. It all helps to build the publicity for the business.

It’s important to realise images can form part of a Press Release Package and send to local media companies. Under these circumstances, this can only help to receive a positive response and increase the profile of the business.

BRANDING

With this in mind, the pictures taken at these events form a valuable archive of the business’s history. That is to say, the images help businesses improve on their events.

GIFTS

Coupled with the event, the photographer can produce prints of keynote speakers who present at the event. As a mark of appreciation of the event, the prints are given as a gift to the speakers.

For this reason, good event photographers are in high demand. Smart businesses are putting their services to effective use for recording and promoting their various business events.

By the same token if you are considering holding an event for your company, contact Martin to find out what he can do for you.

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WEBSITE IMAGES

HAMPSHIRE NEW BUSINESSES WEBSITE IMAGES

It is important to remember that the first thing that people see when visiting your website are the website images. As a result the quality of your images will form that important first impression.  It takes less than 1/10th of a second to form that first impression.

For this reason, for these images to be successful in keeping the attention of your viewers must have certain qualities.

QUALITY.

The first thing to remember is for displaying the best from your images you need High Definition images. That is clear, bright and colourful. The file size does not have to be large but they do have to be of high quality.

If you use images that are grainy, badly lit, out of focus and clearly a DIY image then your viewers will not stay on your website for very long.

ORIGINALITY.

It’s important to realise that stock photography, has its place. Don’t be a politician and try to convince your viewers that you know what’s good for your site, today consumers are “image-savvy,” they know a stock photo when they see one.

Equally important you need to tailor your images to your own personalised site. As a result by using you or your staff to display your goods, this is where the viewer’s start to build a rapport with you. Yes, it is likely to cost you a little bit more but the upside to this is that they are your photos and nobody else will have them.

All things considered how would you feel looking at a competitor’s website and they are using exactly the same images that are being displayed on yours? By the same token that’s how your viewers will feel.

CREATE AN EMOTIONAL RESPONSE.

A point often overlooked, think about how certain images make you feel good. Given these points, imagine the customer receiving there service or product from a smiling member of staff. In contrast the look of the lady receiving an unexpected bouquet of flowers. This emotion plays a part in the buying process by reinforcing the prospective customer’s desire to feel equally positive about their own purchasing choice.

Website images Picture of staff with glasses

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In addition use appropriate people who resemble your target audience.

By the same token if your business is a plumber’s merchant, do you use images that show people dressed in a morning suit buying plumbing parts? Of course not you use appropriately dressed workman, and maybe show your staff conversing with them.

If your business is selling fancy cakes do you have an overall-clad workman purchasing them? In that case you have people dressed smart or casual with happy smiles on their faces, being served by a well-dressed employee with a smile on their face.

People’s emotional responses are triggered by seeing others enjoying themselves, particularly if they are thinking of making a purchase.

OFFER CANDID IMAGES OF YOUR TEAM.

Know, like and trust, how many times have you heard that? Why not be original in your images, have something that differentiates you from your competitors. Use professional photographs of your employees in a behind the scenes feature or taking part in an event that benefits the public or a charity. Your viewers will feel that they are getting to know your company. By using your staff for the images they start to build trust in who you are and what you do. Doing things for a good cause and publicising it will encourage the emotional response and build rapport.

Don’t forget to include images of your executives on your About Us page.

USE IMAGES TO REINFORCE YOUR BRAND.

If you run a gym, use images that display people enjoying themselves when carrying out a workout. Remember though to pick those images that display the benefit of a good workout and not someone who is grimacing with the effort. Consider having the images taken in the early stage of the workout.

Additionally, when considering the importance the right images for your site, keep these tips in mind:

CONSISTENCY.

Be consistent, try to tell a story with the images. Take into consideration colour, cropping, style, and orientation. Having consistent images helps to build brand recognition.

CROP IMAGES.

By cropping an image you get rid of a lot of wasted empty space. Getting rid of empty space means the viewer’s eye’s drawn to where you want it to view.

DON’T OVERDO IT.

Viewers can feel overwhelmed with lots of website images, less is more. This confuses them and can generate a negative response quickly, all your good work is then wasted. Look for a balance of images and content.

website images Picture of pine wood furniture

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lastly, don’t leave choosing the images until the last minute images carry too much value.

  • 90% of information transmitted to the brain is visual
  • Visual content drives engagement.

Given the above statements make choosing your images an early part of your website strategy.

Looking to upgrade your website images contact Martin to see how he can help you.

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