Portrait Shoot of Marco pierre White

I was asked to shoot some portraits of Marco Pierre White for an editorial feature of his newly revamped restaurant and hotel called The Rudloe arms Just outside Bath. It is a gorgeous Hotel with stunning interiors (and if you love good photography, it has an amazing array of photos taken by the likes of Bob Carlos Clarke and Terry O’Niel). The portraits themselves were left up to me in regards to how i wanted to light them. I wanted low key portraits to fit the image of Marco which is Moody (he could not have been nicer as it turned out). The First portrait i shot was with two heads, one shooting down lighting the staircase with a large trolley and the other was a gridded softbox  above camera. I tried to balance the light so it was even from front to back. (Image 1)

 

Marco Pierre White - Image 1

Marco sat the Rudloe Arms

Th Other Image was a much darker image, just spotted with a snoot with a gridded dish for the back to lift him slightly off the background.

 

Marco Pierre White - Image 2

Image 2

Please feel free to leave comments and feedback. Enjoy!

Portrait of Journalist Liz Hoggard

I was commissioned to shoot Liz Hoggard who is a journalist. It was to coincide with a feature she was writing on relationships (specifically the one between her partner chris and her friends and Liz). The article was to illustrate the differences between her and her partner and the fact that being a journalist involves being on your phone and attending parties quite a lot, as opposed to her partner chris who doesn’t drink and prefers an early night. I interpreted this visually with the use of props (cocktails on one side, green tea on the other etc…)

I wanted to create as much drama in the lighting as possible yet still give it a clean feel. I used a gridded softbox at the front and positioned it above camera. As there was quite a bit of depth to the image I needed o throw some lighting into the background. I used a head with a orange gel for the background shot (to give a bit of warmth to the bar behind). But the real tweaks came in post. I underexposed the image itself to make sure there was detail across the full range then upped the contrast quite considerable and desaturated the shot. I think it worked really well and gave a depth and texture to the image

 

Portrait of Liz and Chris Hoggard

Portrait of Liz and Chris Hoggard

Family Run Food and Drinks Business Portraits – Session 1

I have started a project in coordination with my agency Image Source to produce a series of portraits of family run and owned business’s who produce food and drinks. This could be Ice cream makers, Cheese producers, or even (as in this instance) Champagne makers. The emphasis is on well made products that have not been tampered with and are made with love! The first of my projects was a Champagne maker called Cottonworth, who are based in Hampshire. The owner was one of two brothers called Hugh. He is young, knowledgable about Fizz production and passionate about what he does. He made an ideal candidate for the project. As he was my first subject (more to follow, so watch this space..)

I have decided to shoot two types of shots and keep them consistent. The first is on a black background with a gridded softbox from the side and a gridded spot at the back to give a key light to lift them from the background a bit. I want the portraits natural in every way, i want the clothes as they are, no grooming with the focus on strong lighting and simplicity. Attached is the Black background shot (image 1)

Hugh Liddell - Cottonworth Champagne and Vineyard

Hugh Liddell – Cottonworth Champagne and Vineyard

The other images  were shot using the location as a backdrop, therefore showing the working environment in the background to give a sense of ownership, See image 2 and 3 below.

Hugh Liddell - Cottonworth Champagne and Vineyard

Hugh Liddell – Cottonworth Champagne and Vineyard

Hugh Liddell - Cottonworth Champagne and Vineyard

Hugh Liddell – Cottonworth Champagne and Vineyard

The Last two images were shot in the Golden hour, I wanted the tips of the vines illuminated with warm light and hugh to be softly lit. I used a small of fill light with my profoto from camera left just to give a small trace of detail on his right side.

Hope you like them!

Beauty Shoot 2

I was asked to shoot a beauty feature for a large UK newspaper and its beauty section. It was all about lipstick folks.. and how to get that matte look. I wanted to light this shot clean, my last shoot i could go moody and hence i used a beauty dish with a honeycomb insert, but for this i used a large Octa. The Octa itself is used in a number of ways, as a large window light or as a beauty dish (without the outside white diffuser). I used it on order to throw lots of soft light at the model and get an even coverage, i had a white polyboard (reflector) on camera right and a tri-reflector underneath her chin and below camera level to eliminate any slight shadowing under said chin and to a degree between the eyelids and eyebrows which can sometimes be darker than what you want them to be. The background was of course lit to white it out and this was just a couple of heads firing into two polyboards each to spread the light over the white colorama.

 

There was a little retouching for this shoot, blemish removal, teeth work and a bit of hair work in order to fill gaps etc. She had good skin and that helps massively.

 

Final Look:

Beauty Photography

Beauty Shoot 2 – Lipstick

Album Cover Shoot Day2

The second day of my album cover shoot was about getting a more relaxed feel to the images. As the singer I was shooting is predominantly a blues singer, I thought we would try and recreate an American run down Mid-West type feel…(if that makes sense). The difficulty came with trying to find somewhere that looked like the Mid-West… on the south coast of England. Eventually we found just the place, Newhaven Train Yard, a wonderful location with broken down wooden railway carriages, long wispy grass and haylofts (or so we tried to make them look). I wanted the images very moody and atmospheric but also quite relaxed and not too forced.

Image 1 was at the start of the day and we got a really nice look going on straight off the bat. I actually had a flash head off to the right which was also where the sun was coming up from. I wanted to work with the sun but slightly overpower it so the shadows would darken down around him and the daylight was not too strong against the carriage.

In post I wanted the images more contrasty, so before the images were processed I upped the contrast slightly. In post, I highlighted just the singer’s face and again added more contrast to bring it out and make it punchier.

I wanted a slight reference to the music, but not make it so obvious and forced, which you see a lot in music magazines (the obligatory guitar glued to the chest), having it down by his side and slightly obscured by the grass was a more subtle choice and something you don’t pick up straight away).

Image 1.

Image 1

The second shot we used was a stripped down version, no suit jacket, just a nice white shirt, I wanted it more relaxed and contemplative, a caught moment as opposed to a staged shot (which of course it was). This was shot using just daylight, the sun was behind the “hay loft” so it meant there was plenty of ambient light around and it was quite soft too which was important for the image.

The post work was much the same as it was above, more contrast to the image as a whole and then I selected just the face and added more contrast to it. I also wanted to bring out the stubble slightly so I dodged the white bristles and burned the black ones, a similar trick I use for my landscapes. Overall, I was very pleased with them and more importantly so was my client….(which is really the only thing that matters in photography!).

Image 2.

Image 2

Album Cover Shoot

I was asked by a local singer/songwriter if i could take some shots for his forthcoming album.. obviously I said yes! When constructing the ideas in my head I wanted some atmosphere to the shoot, positivity and generally a bit of mood and movement. The location was in a forest out towards crawley, east sussex and I wanted the images quite warm and with a sunset feel. I used my Bowens Pioneer portable flash, some pocket wizards and my trusty 5DMK2 with a 70-200 mm lens on. I chose this lens as I wanted to shoot on maximum focal length on a shallow depth of field to blow out the background. I got the artist in position and away we went…. I added some warmth to the image by raising the colour temperature of the photo to accentuate the sunset look, upped the contrast and really very little else was done, there were other images in the edit but I felt this was the most natural and in accordance with my initial brief, I felt it met the brief perfectly, there was a bit of motion blur, but I actually preferred that, it gave it a relaxed and non set-up/staged feel.

 

Hope you like it.. enjoy!

 

Album Cover

I was asked by a local singer/songwriter if i could take some shots for his forthcoming album.. obviously I said yes! When constructing the ideas in my head I wanted some atmosphere to the shoot, positivity and generally a bit of mood and movement. The location was in a forest out towards crawley, east sussex and I wanted the images quite warm and with a sunset feel. I used my Bowens Pioneer portable flash, some pocket wizards and my trusty 5DMK2 with a 70-200 mm lens on. I chose this lens as I wanted to shoot on maximum focal length on a shallow depth of field to blow out the background. I got the artist in position and away we went…. I added some warmth to the image by raising the colour temperature of the photo to accentuate the sunset look, upped the contrast and really very little else was done, there were other images in the edit but I felt this was the most natural and in accordance with my initial brief, I felt it met the brief perfectly, there was a bit of motion blur, but I actually preferred that, it gave it a relaxed and non set-up/staged feel.

 

Hope you like it.. enjoy!

 

Album Cover