.....as you never know where they may lead too.
Just over a week ago I answered a call of help on a Facebook group. It was a student, looking for a photographer to work on a TFP (time for print) basis. Basically, TFP means that, as a photographer you work for free but gain the benefit of achieving more pictures to add to your portfolio. As you can imagine there are a lot of these posted, and as a photographer you tend to weigh up each one and think of what possibilities it could lead too should you wish to take on the offer.
With this call, for me it was a no-brainer. Good PR for my business, as I'm helping out a student from a local college with a high end fashion exhibition, not having to rent a studio as we used the college studio, and Lauren (the student who organised it) was clear on what she was looking for, plus the possibility of what else it could lead too in the future.
There were two themes, red and yellow, and two models, Jess and Olivia. Neither of them are professional models, Jess is a friend of Lauren's and Olivia is a fellow student, but working with both of them was an absolute dream and, to be honest, looking at the results, neither of them would look out of place on the modelling scene.
Both shoots were tethered straight into Lightroom, so we could see the shots as they were taken and make lighting adjustments or editing decisions as we were going along, and also at the end of the shoot it made choosing images for Lauren a lot easier at the end of the session.
To the first shoot, theme of Red....this was supposed to be an outdoor shoot, but due to the return of the snow first thing in the morning meant that both were now going to be studio based.
Before shooting I set up the camera settings to shoot at the maximum shutter sync speed of the lights (1/250th sec) and then adjustments the aperture until I get a black screen. Doing this ensures that none of the ambient light in the studio is affecting the shot and gives me complete control of the two studio lights I was using.
So this is the lighting set up for the shoot....
.....a strobe through a soft box situated at a 45° angle towards the model and another strobe, situated behind the model, facing the white backdrop, and creating a clean crisp background.
Eventually we wanted to experiment using lighting gels, and using the exact same lighting set up, I place a purple gel over the light placed behind the model, increased the power of the light, as placing a gel over the diffuser you do lose one stop of light, and then it's a trial and error process until you get the desired amount, and with the strobe light at the same power, replaced the purple lighting gel with a light pink one. As we were shooting head and shoulder shots, I also had the model hold a silver reflector, bouncing some light to fill in shadows under the nose and chin.
The effect worked really well, and although these were shot on a white backdrop, you can also get the same effect using a grey backdrop, which tends to be the favoured coloured backdrop for photographers.
We then experimented with the black backdrop, firstly using just the speedlight through a soft box at a 45° degree angle (left hand pic below), and then using the 2nd speedlight with a red coloured gel, placed in a direct line on the right hand side of the model, and directly facing her, to create a strip of red lighting down her left side.
Then it was onto the yellow themed shoot, featuring Olivia. For this one the lighting set up was exactly the same as the above shots, but this time, changing the backdrop to a yellow colour, and using the speedlight behind the model to create a vivid yellow background.
With this shoot we also experimented with props, using sunglasses that were donated for the shoot, but having the model carefully place them so we didn't get any reflection of the soft box showing in the lenses of the glasses.
Again shooting tethered into Lightroom, when it came to the end of the shoot, Lauren could quickly choose which images she wished to use and place on an SD card, and with very little editing needed, the choosing and converting final images to JPEG was all done in minutes.
Knowing that these images will be used as part of a high end fashion exhibition, with some influential people taking part, does justify the decision to take up this TFP offer, and the possibilities that taking part in it could lead too.
So I'd say, as a photographer, whether hobbyist, semi-pro, or pro, never rule out doing TFP jobs and always weigh up the possibilities that could end up coming your way, and the PR for your business and photography skills......watch this space!!!!!