Roselien has long legs, no even longer, …
She contacted me recently because she had seen my work, and she loved the ‘full of character and emotion’ part of my photography. I think I need to write that down, for future speeches.
She volunteered to be a model if I needed one. I think Roselien proved to be a model able of expressing emotion and character herself. On top of that she has very intriguing eyes, very pale almost like those snow dogs (husky). Oh and those legs, endle(g)ss they seem. We had fun working together on a dull and gray afternoon end october.

All images shot on Canon 5D mark II and with Sigma 50 mm f1.4 Art and Canon 100 mm f2.8 L IS Macro.

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Thank you for watching, see you soon!

Ludwig

It has been a while since I first started thinking about how to define ‘fine erotica’ and what can be described as being erotic, and I still am not really sure how to describe it. I think it must be a mix of State of mind, sexual attraction, visual appeal and a lot of fantasy about the promise of an intimate relationships. For me erotica is not directly linked to nude, and nude is not per definition erotic. I think there’s a lot of nudity available on the internet that has little or no erotic effect, rather the contrary. And there are some (harder to find) very erotic, non nude pictures out there as well.
As a photographer it is not easy to find and keep that very thin border between ‘just another picture of a beautiful woman’ – fine erotica – ‘just plain vulgar’. And that is just what I’m trying to achieve in some of my photo shoots.
I think I have the necessary technical knowledge now, but there’s a lot more needed.
One of those things needed is a willing model, understanding your ideas and showing enough confidence to let you execute them. Not easily done these days, where all things including nudity, erotica and sexual arousal are hidden far away behind closed bedroom doors.
It will be a long search, and I feel I only have just started out.

This shoot was done with help of Audrey from Hotel Remington in Ronse, thank you Audrey, for keeping a room for us that day. Clicking on the name-link will take you to the website of this nice, charming hotel.

Emilie was ready. She understood the things I wanted her to evoke, and she did it. Thank you so much Emilie, for your confidence, your trust and the beautiful results we made together.

Emilie is not really sure about revealing herself to the world as being a nude model, so we agreed to show only ‘non recognizable images on this blog’. I hope you understand, and I hope you can enjoy these pictures.

 

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Hi there,
another small tutorial on how to make a HDR image, without the (in my opinion) ugly HDR look.
I will be using Adobe lightroom and Adobe Photoshop in this tutorial, but you might do the same entirely within Photoshop, or with Lightroom and another application that will let you merge bracketed images into one single 32 bit (high dynamic range) file.

Here’s the procedure:
Make sure to have a series of images, that will span the entire dynamic range of the scene. This means from detail in the brightest of highlights (the darkest image) to detail in the darkest shadows (the brightest image). Of course you will need a tripod to have exactly the same composition in each and every image. In this case, I have images taken over 5 stops exposure difference, going from 2,5 sec at f22 (brightest), up to 1/6th sec at f22 (darkest) making full stop intervals 2,5 – 1,3 – 0,6 – 0,3 – 1/6. Remember: never ever use aperture to make a bracketing series, since that will have a severe impact on the depth of field in your image. Shutter speed only changes the exposure, nothing else. (unless there’s moving objects in the scene, but that’s a different thing)
Original exposures: Click for bigger image.

bracketing series TenT

Import the images in Lightroom (or any other RAW editor) and change nothing but: Lens corrections (deformations and color aberrations) and eventually your image crop (make sure to synchronize your edits on all images).

In Lightroom, with all your images selected, right click -> Edit in -> Merge to HDR Pro in Photoshop
(That is accessible from within photoshop under: File -> Automate -> Merge to HDR Pro … in case you do not start from Lightroom)
At that moment, Photoshop will mangle the image data from all images together, into one file with 32 bit information. All exposure data from the original 12 or 14 bit images is contained in this single
file. You will see that happen in a separate plug-in window in Photoshop.

HDRPRO

When Photoshop is done with this, you’ll have different options available on the right hand side. We’ll choose to work in 32 bit mode. (when you have moving elements in your scene, you might try to tick the ‘remove ghosts’ box.)
The position of the slider below the histogram has no impact on further development in Lightroom. (Complete toning in ACR is to be used when you do not have Lightroom, and you want to further edit this image in Adobe Camera Raw.)
Below on the left hand side, you can see the original exposures, and their respective exposure values.

Click ok, Photoshop will now quit this HDR Pro window, and show you the image in the standard editor.
Do nothing but save the image in its current state. It should save a tiff file in the same spot as where the original raw images were on your hard drive. When you get back to lightroom, you should have a new image available, this might show up at the end of your filmstrip.

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You can now further develop this image in Lightroom the way you are used to, but there’s one important difference: in stead of having an exposure slider of -5 to +5 stops, you’ll now have a slider that has a range from -10 to +10 stops. You’ll probably not use it that far, but that indicates that you are working on a 32 bit image now.
You’ll probably reduce the highlights a lot, to get back your detail in the highlight area, and consecutively you will probably up the shadows quite a bit, to get detail in your darker areas. Beware that to keep your results realistic, you should take care to keep some contrast in your image. In that understanding, it might be a good idea to locally paint in highlight and shadow detail, and not use the standard tab to its full extend. Look at how the circus tent get’s a lot more attention in the final image. This is done with the local adjustment brush, and delicately brushing more or less exposure/contrast/clarity in certain areas.

Final image: Click for bigger version.
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About the image. This picture was taken during a school trip with my architectural photography students at Kisp. The image shows one of the main halls of the Tour and Taxis site in Brussels. In this hall, the Brussels school for circus artists is giving training sessions. The Tour and Taxis site was a former customs and warehouse building, for imported goods for the Brussels area.

The orphanage, it’s been a long time since I photographed there. I had no access to the Mansion that day, and the orphanage proved a welcome alternative.

It might not be as fancy or beautiful as The Mansion, it has character and atmosphere by millions, …

I met Sofie at a good friends wedding party early september, and asked her if she would like to be a model in one of my shoots. Mostly this question comes with some hesitation and fear. I might be the dirty old man, looking for some secret fantasies to come true. :p

After a week or so I got an email message that confirmed her interest, and that in fact it had been her husband that pushed her into this. He had been looking trough my images (on this blog-site) and found them to be beautiful and respectful. We met some weeks later. Sofie is not a model in the strict sense of the word, she never posed before, and was somewhat intimidated by the event. But she did very well, she managed to look straight into the camera with an expression of confidence and self awareness, and she had no problems following my posing instructions. I would call her a natural beauty.

Thank you Sofie, for your patience and thrust!

I hope you’ll enjoy the pictures.

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Come again soon,

 

Ludwig

Hello there,

as promised, some images of the new court building in Ghent.

architects Stéphane Beel and Lieven Achtergael, opened in 2007

 

I had lent my tripod to one of my students, so these images are not ‘top notch’, but they are well enough to show.

Normally you should never do architectural photography without a tripod. The advantages of a tripod are multiple:

It helps in fine tuning your camera position, a 3 way head is optimum for this.

It helps when light levels get low, a stable tripod allows using small apertures, even at dim light.

It allows for multiple exposures or bracketing exposure series, when you need to handle a too large dynamic range in your scene.

It slows you down, which I think is a good thing in architectural photography.

I use a Berlebach 2042 report tripod, which has a ball joint just beneath the 3-way head. This ball joint is of immense help in leveling out your tripod head. Both tripod and head are a heavy pack, but in the same respect very stable. I have been using it for about 4 years now, and it shows no signs of wear. In the image below, you should clearly see the ball joint in the tripods base. Oh, and it is the most beautiful type of tripod I have ever seen, with its solid ash wood legs.

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The main goal for this evening was to concentrate on light and lighting, and again, these were taken without tripod. ;)

 

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See you soon for the next series of images: Sanne at house Adelaide, the color version.

have a nice weekend, Ludwig

Not another beauty this week, something different today.
Well, after a long holiday, the architectural photography classes I teach have started again. I have a limited group of students this time, and it feels very good working closely with all of them to get them interested in the subject of architectural photography, and to teach them different ways of looking at architecture, as well as teach them the different competences needed. The classes exist in theory classes, handling subjects like perspective, depth of field, metering light, framing and composition, presenting the work of existing architectural photographers, etc, … and practice classes, where we head to an outdoor location for an entire night of architectural photography practice. We have been doing two locations so far, both in Ghent (Belgium). We photographed the historical court building and the new court building, very contrasting architecture, but we also photographed them with a different focus in mind. Old court building was to be presented in its surroundings, at the new court building the students had to focus on light and lighting. (plus reflection and transparency)

Some pictures of the old one, new one will follow later this week.

 

Historical court building of Ghent, constructed 1836-1846 in neoclassic style, architect: Louis Roelandt

 

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best regards,

Ludwig

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