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Just to clarify a couple of things:
My friend wasn’t happy from the moment she saw the photos. The editing could have been better as this particular photographer started off doing digital artwork etc so is fully capable of erasing a bit of background properly.
She had been going to get newborn photographs done but then was offered this shoot by this photographer. Who does newborn shoots and charges for them. I think it was a ‘bump to baby’ package she was wanting to try out?
It was the ‘well you’re not paying so I’m not giving you top quality stuff’ attitude that upset my friend when she voiced her legitimate concerns. Noone else got involved until weeks and weeks had passed. I’m not entirely sure what else my friend could have done, frankly. She sent private messages to start with, then when she was ignored she wrote on the ‘tog’s wall. Then when those were ignored, her husband tried. I don’t think that’s poor conduct. Obviously I’m biased because my friend has been shafted, but if you’re sat waiting to hear back from someone who won’t answer your PMs but is happily posting to Facebook, surely it’s logical to post to Facebook instead to try to get their attention?
I’m just absolutely gutted for her as she now has no photos (bar two rubbish FB downloads) of her daughter, and has had a whole shitstorm brought down upon her by this woman.
Chalk it up to experience I guess, thanks for your help 🙂
Need I say more?
The funniest thing is, she goes onto other people’s photos, asking them ‘how did you do this?’, then attempts her own little version. Plus all that ‘txt spk’ makes my eyes bleed.
Another one that won’t go far…
Thank you so much for that, cameraclicker! Really helpful and kind of you (and thanks, yes, she’s cute as pie but it definitely a tempestuous redhead 🙂 ).
My flashgun is a Metz, but I will look into the commander mode. I had a very old old flash gun which had a funny little handle thing which meant you could attach the flash to that, and a separate hotshoe to the camera which meant you could hold it off-camera; but my Metz doesn’t have that. I do need to get off my butt and look into it really as it’s a cool function to have.
I’ve just had a fiddle and lightroom does have the eyedropper tool, but it works with percentages rather than numbers (100% being white, it seems).
As for the focus, yes, I was using my macro/portrait lens and f3.2 for the first, f3 for the second. I absolutely love the lens but it’s such a slow focusing one that it does mean I have to take LOTS of pics to get some with the focus just right. And I suppose, with a plain background, I don’t need it to be such a small depth of field. Normally I love to get some nice, blurry bits in the background but, again, this whole ‘makeshift studio’ thing is new territory…
Thanks again so much for your help and encouragement!
This link should work… https://fbcdn-sphotos-h-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-ash3/155850_10100595581623448_85766224_n.jpg
The white balance was just set on ‘Auto’ but I will get myself a grey card, thank you. I’ve tried metering using the ‘take a photo of a white piece of paper’ before but it just never seems to register right. I will play around and set for daylight, and I’ll make sure to leave the main light off, thank you.
I was editing in Lightroom but I guess my perception of the correct white balance was off. I tend to err on the ‘warm’ side when it comes to tweaking it and I know I can overdo it sometimes.
I had a play around last night with the tips you guys have suggested and it certainly produces something more interesting than just “light straight at the subject”. I realise the focus is a little off (and excuse the tiger-face-covered-in-food – it’s Christmas, after all!) but it’s certainly more interesting than the earlier attempts! I hope you don’t mind me sharing my fumblings with you. For a site that’s dedicated to taking the piss, you guys have been really helpful and accommodating…
One softbox to the side, flashgun on camera (bounced off ceiling): http://s1275.beta.photobucket.com/user/snap_happy1/media/DSC_2437-1_zpsbfad2922.jpg.html
Both softboxes illuminating the background, flashgun on camera (bounced off ceiling): http://s1275.beta.photobucket.com/user/snap_happy1/media/DSC_2444-1_zps96be82ce.jpg.html
As I say, I realise the second one especially, is out of focus but it was just fiddling with the light (and an excitable daughter).
Thank you so much for such detailed feedback!
To clarify, this is the ‘kit’ I have: http://www.ebuyer.com/337598-light-kit-2-13m-light-kit-1?utm_source=google&utm_medium=products&gclid=CKae_cmyuLQCFQ7LtAodyxUAKA
And you’re right – there IS a lot of colour leaking in. I am a total novice when it comes to this sort of thing (as I say, I’d just got the grip of the flashgun from last Christmas!!) so I have no idea where they’re coming from (the walls are magnolia, the curtains are a neutral colour but I pull them out of the way so the light shouldn’t be reflecting off them), but the images in that album have already been processed. I’ve added the SOOC versions here (http://s1275.beta.photobucket.com/user/snap_happy1/library/SOOC) so you can compare, if you wish.
I can’t remember, offhand, whether I had the main room light on when I shot the photo of the carrier. I think I did, but it’s just a normal, energysaving bulb, and is very dull in comparison to the softbox bulbs so I wouldn’t have thought it would make a huge difference…
It never even occurred to me to light the background, with the softbox, and use the flash on the kids; I will definitely give that a go! My normal MO is no flash at all, my 55mm lens, and the big window downstairs which gives much softer, more even light (like this: https://fbcdn-sphotos-h-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-ash3/598508_10100585209833598_1523081865_n.jpg ), so I am very much feeling my way when it comes to electrical light.
Thank you for linking to the shots you did, EvilDaystar – they are fantastic photos, and it’s really helpful that you’ve described the setup as well as, so often I will look at photos and think “that’s lovely!” but not really consider what the lighting setup might be.
I really appreciate your advice. As I say, I am not ever intending to set up as a business or anything, it’s just a hobby for me, and one I enjoy immensely and have improved at over the years. I really want to make the most of these lovely lights and not just ‘point and shoot’ without knowing what I’m doing! Thanks guys 🙂