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Workshop led by photographer Ben Scott, organised by Christopher Getts and Pania Newport for the Sydney Photography Club.

Location: Studio 501 Photography Studio Hire.

Model: Charlotte.

Makeup: Rebecca Montgomery.

This is another exercise in Rembrandt lighting, only this time the background is dark and strongly figured. Key is getting the model in sync with the background pattern. Important was working the light with the dark eye makeup; at the time, I was monitoring the strong reds in the lower half. Had I the courage at the time, I would have exploited the diaphanous red veils in an action shot. In fact, I ought to have worked on some full-length shots.


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Workshop led by photographer, Ben Scott.

Event: Sydney Photography Club.

Lighting: Christopher Getts & Pania Newport. Makeup: Rebecca Montgomery.

Hair: Kabuki Mee.

Model: Hannah.

Location: Studio 501 Photographic Studio Hire, Surry Hills.

This was an exercise in “white-on-white”, a high single light with the model very close to a white wall/floor backdrop. This is harsh light territory! The obvious focus was the unusual shoes; important also was the creation of strong shadow – very sharp when the model was leaning up against the wall, and softer when standing free. At the time of shooting, I wasn’t paying sufficient attention to the silhouette of the shadows – some developed an unfortunate visual life of their own. Not show here are the dozen or so photos eliminated because of too much conflict in the stripes: I’ve learned a few lessons here about striped clothing and the need to ‘maintain’ them with a minimum of wrinkles. One key issue is the fall of the hair over the face and the obvious one in the first two photos is the label inside the jacket. Yes, one could airbrush it out later but the photographer has to be attentive to this level of detail and ideally eliminate it at the time of the shoot.

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Model: Celia.

Location: Studio 501 Photographic Studio Hire, Surry Hills.

Lighting: Christopher Getts & Pania Newport.

Makeup: Rebecca Montgomery.

Hair: Kabuki Mee.

The penultimate and last photos highlight the difference between focussing on the garment (penultimate) and focussing on the light (last). The first has been edited to show up the texture of the textile (the skin tones are consequently lighter) while the last has a greater overall continuity of dark tones, across the range of white to black. Viewing the model from behind the camera hones in on unexpected details; I didn’t really appreciate the silvery jewellery as part of the ensemble till I took the half-length shots – suddenly the delightful reflections of the necklace came to the fore and created meaning. Fashion photography is all about attention to detail at the time of shooting: noting the loose thread at the waist in the third photo and subtly altering the fingers and hands in the fourth would have improved the shots. The theme of this shoot was simplicity: Rembrandt lighting with an unlit background and similarly straightforward makeup.