Hey Folks the ultimate selfie not a post I thought I would write BUT I saw great value in sharing this even more so during this world pandemic which has hit this and many other Industries hard! as of writing this work has disappeared as it has for many and I now have more time on my hands BUT this is only temporary and it WILL get back to normal, just got to hang in there folks! So with all of these work responsibilities being taking from us, take this time to have a breather, try and relax a little I know it will be hard but what’s the alternative right?
With all this time on our hands it’s time to PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE, and get ready for hitting the ground running when it all returns back to normal which it will. I know how difficult it can be to test out ideas for a shoot when you don’t have models at hand at all times of the day, or when we have exhausted all of the family members good nature to help in our time of need and I also know many other photographers can relate to this.
As a Photographer I am always thinking of ideas, lighting setups, looks I want to create and the huge frustration which comes with those thoughts, as we all know how much preparation and time one image can take, but the biggest problem for most photographers is we are left with only a pen and paper to jot down ideas or maybe draw some diagrams, or some may have great software to recreate these ideas/looks in a 3d rendered environment, but for me there is no better way than to stand in front of my own camera and run through the test setups when I have no one at hand to help, having that human element in front of the lens to test is far better than using a mannequin or a polystyrene head as it can help greatly for an upcoming shoot you are testing for or just trying to recreate a look you have seen.
Walking into a shoot I have already tested out allows me to approach the session with great confidence which instills confidence in the model, which then yields great results or at the least the exact results you were after from your initial ideas/concepts. Without a doubt knowing how to set up your lights to create a specific look without having to go through this process will come with experience but to anyone starting out or learning the craft, this is the perfect way to learn at your own pace and in your own environment. I guarantee it will boost your confidence going into your next shoot!
I am going to walk you through my process in the hope it will help you get up and test out those ideas so they don’t fall victim to ‘ that would work really well’ or end up not being possible to create for all the excuses which quickly follow!
First is the most obvious, you’re going to need a tripod, remember you are alone with no one to hold your camera so it’s essential :) You will also need a Camera I will link to all the gear I used no doubt you will have your own but if you want to check them out links below. You will also need a wireless trigger, oh and lights/strobes.
About the Author
Barry Mountford is a portrait photographer based in Gateshead, England. For more of his work, check out his website, follow him on Twitter and Instagram and subscribe to his YouTube channel. To get in touch, you can look him up on Facebook. This article was also published here and shared with permission.
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