Second Studio Shoot (Looking for Honest C&C so feel free to tear me apart on this one)
Just finished my second studio shoot (not professional or anything, just playing my recently acquired AB800's). The first one can be found here: http://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/51843514
I don't think I addressed all the feedback from the last one (I attempted to but I'l still learning), and I definitely have two catchlights in most of the images which was something that a previous poster recommended against.
Anyways I'm looking for some honest critique on this one so feel free to be harsh. I'm not going to learn anything from a bunch of "nice picture"
OK, honest critique:
Theyre boring. I looked at them and tried to look at them again for more critique, but theyre just so boring. Her clothing, her expression (or lack there of), the lighting, the background. Its just..... blah.
The photos are really soft. Id like to see her eyes sharp as a tack, they aren't. Nothing POPS in the photo and the background is so big and boring its distracting. If it were a dark gray with spotlight on it ala high end fashion, it COULD work, but it doesn't as it is. At least not for me.
Theres nothing technically wrong with your lighting set up, its just a little flat and..... boring. Especially when you combine it with a white background, boring clothing and boring model.
Im sorry, Im not trying to be a prick, the photos are just really not doing anything for me. In the time it took me to write this, Ive just about forgotten what they look like.
Try some different angles, poses, lighting setups, backgrounds, etc. Do a google search and find some studio shots you love and try to replicate them. Don't just put each light on a stand aimed at the models chest from 45 degrees on both sides of the camera. Keep plugging away, you've got nice lights, you can get great results with them.
Right! Like we've NEVER seen Zac Arias or any one of a million fashion photographers use a white bg.
As to lighting I would say not bad for a second time out. At least there is a sense of balanced lighting here. He can move on from that but to call it boring is inaccurate. Is it Dramatic? No. Sufficient? Yes. I've seen much worse.
And to whomever suggested multiple catchlights were a no no, really? Since when? check out Vogue or any other high end fashion pub and look closely. You'll see everything from one catchlight up to multiple LEDs in a ring light.
Honestly, I often wonder why some people bother to comment if they really don't know what they're talking about. I'd say you're off to a good start. You know about David Hobby's www.strobist.com right? Go there and study up. Buy any of Joe McNalley's great books on simple lighting. And shoot, shoot, shoot.
This one often gets me so I am always on the lookout for it. Notice in the first and last photo, her left eye is much larger than the right one. Then look at the middle one. Even with the shadow, you can see that her left eye (the one on the right side of the frame) is larger than her right one. Many people have one eye opened more than the other. You might try posing her so that the side of her face with the smaller appearing eye is closer to the camera to equalize the sizes.
Disagree without being disagreeable
1st and 4th, to me, are generally interesting. Double catchlights in first are not a problem, but are a bit distracting to me in the 4th. But then, I'm bothered by double catchlights or ring light effects in high fashion rags, too. The light is not flat, but it is a bit too even. Lower the power on one side quite a bit, or put them on one side only. Maybe only shoot with one. Perhaps position your subject further away from the background. Her clothes are not boring, but do try to encourage her to put on different faces. The one hand hair wash shot doesn't work because her legs are chopped off. This pose works better with at least 3/4 length showing and with hips "kicked" out to one side. Or crop the heck out of it so that not so much white space surrounds her. And about the eyes: I'm not bothered by uneven size, but do sharpen them in post. That would instantly improve the outcome.