Studio Portrait Session With Zané

Zane contacted me for some corporate images of herself that she needed to use. With many of my sessions I don’t usually only do only images of what the session is about, so I asked her to bring some extra clothes for when we are done to get the formal corporate mages, we can just take some more relaxed portraits in the studio.

We first started with the formal corporate images but it didn’t take long before we did the more relaxed images which turned out to be my favorite. Many times we over complicate our lives and try to be fancy with huge lighting setups which are not necessary.

I love old school things, antiques, and objects that aren’t perfect. We try to get everything so perfect always that we forget that simplicity is sometimes better. So my most favorite images turned out to be the relaxed poses, simple but good soft lighting and some color correction that was done in Capture One and Photoshop.

I decided to use an old small ladder as a prop for her to sit on, which isn’t perfect, it has paint stains but who cares right? The imperfections make it beautiful.

For the color of the clothes, I love the same color palette in photos, so if the background is a certain color I try to match the clothes with that color, it just makes the images have a little more painterly feeling. So she decided on some gray and blue clothing which worked perfectly well with the gray/blue background that was used.

For the lighting, I have a go-to setup for my lighting and that is to use two lights but in such a way to mimic natural soft light. I used two Elinchrom D-Lite 4 lights. The key is to feather the lights a lot. So the main light is from camera left, basically turned away from her and then for the fill light I put a light behind me. This lighting works great for most subjects and scenarios.

After years of experimenting with colors and trying to be fancy, I realized that simple accurate colors are the best, to takes quite some time to realize small color changes in images but with practice, it gets better and better and more sensitive to the changes you make is super subtle but makes a huge difference.

For the post-production of the images, I used Capture One Pro for basic editing, and then finish the images in Photoshop for the coloring of the images.

It is very important to know that you have to start with good lighting though.