Monday, April 12, 2010
A WEDDING PORTRAIT
I am not a wedding photographer, nor have I ever had an aspirations to become one. I've done 4 weddings in my life as favors for friends, and I hated every minute of it. I often tell my friend Dave Pavol, a very well-known and highly respected wedding photographer in Nashville, Tennessee, I'd rather photograph a charging rhino than the mother of the bride! However, I had the opportunity to photograph a lovely bride in a unique environment, so I took advantage of it.
The off-camera lighting you see here came from a Paul C. Buff Vagabond II portable power unit. This allows you to use a powerful studio strobe -- in this case the White Lightning X-series X1600 flash unit -- away from an AC power source. The flash was positioned up against the wall striking the model at a 90 degree angle so her shadow wouldn't block the graffiti/art work on the opposite side. The variable power slider on the White Lightning allowed me to adjust the flash output until I liked the exposure. I had a friend hold a reflector on the right side to bounce a little light into the shadows. I didn't use the modeling light capability because I wanted to conserve power in the Vagabond II, but also because I didn't need it. I triggered the flash wirelessly with a transmitter/receiver from Paul C. Buff.
I also took some shots with available light, and then I added a reflection using Flood made by flamingpear.com.
When I look at the formal black and white wedding pictures my parents took when they got married in 1945, it's hard to get my mind around how different things are now. I'm sure they couldn't begin to relate to a bride with tattoos, graffiti as the background, and edgy side lighting.