A short cold break in the park in Ronse.
Aude was courageous enough to withstand the cold …
Aude in the park
© ludwig desmet
All images Canon 5D II with Sigma 50mm f1.4 DG A.
thank you for watching
Please enjoy Jane, posing in her catsuit.
rather difficult to make images of a good looking body in a catsuit not look ‘sleazy’ or ‘cheesy’ or whatever you might call it. (cheap looking soft erotic style)
I hope I managed in some way to prevent these images from looking that way. I’ll leave the judgement up to you.
Images taken with Canon 100mm f2.8 Macro IS L (1 and 2) and Sigma 50 mm f1.4 DG A (3-4-5) – ISO 100 on Canon 5D II.
Thank you for watching, thank you Jane, for being my patient model on this cold day, thank you to the owners of the house for granting me acces to this great playground.
Another set of images taken on film.
The advantage of film is that it is slow paced. A lot of things need to be double checked. I still have a lot to learn, but with Aude I managed to get a decent amount of good shots. The weather was cloudy, so there where no hard contrasts and that helps. Shutter speeds need to be kept under 1/25s to get neat and sharp images, unless you are able to work on a tripod. For this shoot I partly worked with tripod, partly hand held.
These images ‘at the Castle’ are taken with my newly acquired Rolleiflex TLR with Carl Zeiss Planar 75mm f3.5 lens. I have the impression that the focus is a little more accurate than with the other Rolleiflex, and I manage to get a decently sharp image with the help of digital techniques. The images are taken on Kodak T-max 100 film. Click for bigger version.
The castle is the ‘Chateau d’Anvaing’, nicely surrounded by its water surface. There are some giant trees and remainder ornaments in the immediate surroundings.
Thank you for watching, soon I will post another set with Aude, taken with another Twin Lens Reflex that has at least 50 years: the Yashica 635.
I normally don’t do weddings, this shoot has been a kind of a ‘after wedding’ gift from the bride to the bride. 🙂
Never a bad thing if you can give yourself a gift. Elisa chose to have herself portrayed as a souvenir for later.
We played around with a lot of different themes, here’s the wedding dress theme. We started nice, we ended a bit naughty.
Extremely difficult shooting situation, with almost no light (1/25s at f2.8 and ISO640) a tripod is of good help in such situations. All images Canon 5D II and Canon EF 100 mm f2.8 Macro L IS. A tripod and live view allow for accurate focusing (using live view zoom modes and the tripod takes care of long shutter speeds. Be careful to tell your model not to move during exposures.
I hope you like them.
thank you for watching,
From a recent shoot. I have made similar images in my – Nude Incognito – series, in a black studio and with the use of flash lights. This is in a naturally lit environment. I especially like how the body shape and pose fills the square format. Also the dense structure of the floor in contrast with the soft shiny structures of the skin are appealing to me. The model had just put on a body lotion, giving some extra shine to the skin.
I hope you like it. I did, as well as my model and her partner.
1/40s. f3.2 ISO 200
come again soon.
Last Friday I had a model expressing her feelings about her artistic nude shoot as such:
‘Every woman should do this at least once in her life. The images from the first shoot (which was a non nude beauty shoot) have given me enough confidence to do this, and this is such an empowering experience on the level of self-esteem and self consciousness that I would encourage everyone to do it.’ She took a lot of business cards. 😀
Body-language is a very important exteriorising of ones self-awareness, self confidence and self esteem. People with hanging and forward pushing shoulders are mostly the less confident ones, they have tendency to bend over to hide and protect themselves from the outer world. They are having a hard time opening up in a photoshoot. I received another testimonial where a woman said ‘I found it a very fine experience, but at the same time I was very much confronted with my vulnerability, my low self esteem and my lack of confidence. You’ll probably see that in the images. I’m very happy I made this step, but I sure have a long way ahead of me.’
On another occasion I have had my model shout out loud in the open forest ‘I am open to the world, to its resources and its wealth, and I’ll give my talents, my beauty and my smile in return’. And I made some images she’ll never forget. I have given her the task to do that exercise on a regular base. When I sent her the first images she thanked me a lot, and told me she would use them for her daily exercise.
I have strong belief that by changing the body-language, even if it was only one time, making some ever lasting images of it, can change a persons vision on who she (or he) is, and more important, who she can be. In that aspect the role of the photographer becomes so much more than the one taking pictures, being able to handle light, exposure, lenses and camera’s. He has to be some kind of a therapist, being able to express comfort and thrust to his model, being able to understand feelings, emotions and personal barriers. He has to be able to pauze and give space when needed, work fast when the process allows. Learning photography is not a hard thing to do, learning peoples psyche is.
for reasons of privacy I choose not to publish any pictures with this post, except the two nameplates that are upon our front door. They match very well indeed.
thank you for reading, comment and share as much as you like.
if you feel like posing could do you good, please give me a sign. If you feel you need some other kind of therapy, contact Nathalie. 😉
I have printed a couple of books trough the Blurb services already, and wanted to make a new collection of prints for my location search. It is always handy to carry an overview of recent work with you, if you want to negotiate the possible use of a place/building/location for future shoots.
I had made a lightroom book, which I mostly do, and published it to the Blurb website the usual way.
Blurb has proved to be a quick and reliable partner, and this was not different this time, hardly a week later, my order got shipped, next day delivery at home. March 20th.
Curiously running trough the pages however, I noticed something wrong all the way, on two facing pages. A stain running vertically over the pages: (sorry for the sloppy images)
So I opened up a support ticket with Blurb.
Received a message that same day, that I would get a replacement copy printed, at no extra cost.
(very swift reaction and no discussion, thumbs up for Blurb)
Second copy arrived a week later. March 27th. Of course I ran trough the book immediately, finding out that there were no stains in this book, but that every page had an ugly bue-green color cast on it. My models certainly don’t look good in green. 😦
Re-opened the same support ticket I had before, thanking them for dealing with the print stains, but complaining that my models looked green, and that the color reproduction was too far off target for a photo book. … It took a while before I received an answer this time, and first thing they answered me was that they needed advice from a colleague that was not present at that time to make sure that this qualified for a reprint, so it could take a while. It took a week, before I got nervous and re-asked my question on the status of my support ticket. Then came the answer from another person, that indeed ‘people at Blurb need to work very fast and that colour shifts happen in digital printing, etc … ‘
Well then, I’ve answered the friendly person, I have been working in the printing industry before (which is true, I am a graphic designer and I worked in prepress and publicity companies before) and that I am aware that some colour variations do occur, but that I was also aware of the existence of calibrated workflows, and that Blurb, as a main partner with Adobe Lightroom needed at least to be able to prove that they could do better than this, as they had done in the first print (which had good colour reproduction). That this was a portfolio piece that I wanted to be proud about, and that it was not the case right now.
One day later I received a message that I would receive another printed copy of the book, at no extra cost.
A week later my new book arrived, a good one this time.
thank you Blurb, for dealing with your own quality issues.
———- 2015 ————
Well I think I should start by giving you all my best wishes for 2015. Good health, a warm shelter and caring people around you, some personal challenges, and the time you need to help develop yourself to a richer being. (not financially speaking, … I think)
I have decided for myself to sell my 3D rendering business, in favor of my photography work. Let’s see what happens next. 😉
This blog had 49.931 views from 9.994 visitors during 2014. You are not alone out there, thank you for following my work! The fact that you are reading these words means you are still there. I would like to repeat that if you have a particular question or request, just ask.
I asked Sabine if she felt ok about me photographing a model in her studio, and without hesitation she said ‘sure, no problem’. I think Sabine is not really aware yet what exceptional work she makes. She has an amazingly strong and expressive pencil, and she mainly works with the human body as a subject. She is preparing an exhibit for late spring, so her studio is packed with finished works, works in progress, and full of idea’s that are waiting to get realized.
I had Sarah as a model. A thin, almost breakable figure, that contrasted extremely well with the robust paintings all around her. She agreed to pose topless/naked based on a discussed mood board. She did really well, but she got cold really quickly (‘as she always does’ she told me).
I had an awful mix of light sources, which forced me to work only black and white here (cool light coming from a rainy day, Tungsten spots in the ceiling, a phosphorescent lamp over the work bench, and a neutral daylight source Sabine uses to finish off her paintings. This means there is no way to get a proper white balance for all these sources, and you can not correct the different light colors afterwards properly.
Anyway, here are the images. For the technical details: Canon 5D II with Sigma 50 mm f1.4 DG Art and Canon 24 mm f1.4 L II. ISO from 320 to 500, shutter speeds from 1/10th to 1/30th of a second (train yourself to get a stable hand 😉 ) and apertures f2.0 – f2.2.
Thank you Sarah, for your confidence and cooperation, thank you not caring about the cold, thank you for coming to Ronse this rainy day.
Thank you Sabine, for saving my day (two other locations became unavailable very last minute) and for letting me into your home. Thank you for sharing your ideas and work.
After our outdoor forest shoot, we had some time left for a quick session ‘at The Mansion’.
The Mansion is still my favorite location for indoor shooting, since it has so many possibilities. Whatever moment of the day, there’s always a room that has nice light, the building is free-standing, which means that there are windows all around, and some rooms have windows on three sides. So besides choosing my main light source, all I have to check is my own position, the position of my model, in respect to the multiple windows I have around me. I can shoot with a window in my back, and still shoot against the light with the window just in front of me.
On the attic, I have rooms with only a small light, on cloud covered days that becomes very similar to what a softbox would do. On sunny days, I have a light spot on the floor, which reacts as an indirect light, and I still get the ‘softbox’ windowlight. On sunny days I rather not shoot in straight sunlight, because of the huge contrast ratios between sun-lit area’s and shadow areas.
Some images to illustrate my explanations:
1. One of the attic rooms, a single window at the right of my model, cloudy day, no direct sunlight, a door opening just left of the image, you actually see the door at the left side. Gives me enough light to create that small rim light on the hair and body, and it adds just that little extra light on the floor, to make the rest of the body shape stand out.
2. The office: A row of windows left as well as right from the model. Moderate light amount. There is an additional window light just behind the model, above the door. I added the extra bit of artificial light, available in the room. (some small bulbs) The artificial light creates a warm color cast, that can be annoying because the natural light is color neutral or blueish, depending on the weather conditions.
Same location, but I changed position.
Now I’m shooting against the light, but also with the light coming from behind me. The windows are big enough to provide a soft overall light, slightly coming from above, the windows in the back produce a very beautiful contour light all over my model. Note that I position myself in a way that my model is in front of a darker background, otherwise the rim light would get lost. (this was the first picture actually, Fien still has the hairdo from the exterior shoot.)
3. The angels room. Named after a beautiful decoration above the wooden side panels, with angels and flower, …
I have my main window light just behind me, aimed west, this picture was one of the last, so not long before sunset. There’s two more windows on the right, one just behind the model, one a little further away. The window just behind the model was covered with curtains, so only the far right window remains. Again this window helps creating a nice hairlight and ‘sheds a little light’ to the back end of the sofa.
4. The main entrance. Here my model actually stands outside, under the porch covering the entrance to the front door. This is perfect soft light for nice portraits. It is evenly distributed from above and from below, and it prevents hard shadows under the eyebrows. I have no backlight, but the glass in the front door provides a little definition of the hair contours.
5. The stairway. The main light source here is artificial light, coming from above (slightly warm tinted) The rim light is coming from a window behind the model, higher up the wall, spanning from left to right. This gives the nice light on the hair, the side of the head, the cleavage and breast, as well as the wooden pillars. Again mixed light white balance, but to me it is ok.
6. Also taken in the angels room, this time the model is standing where I took picture 3, back to the window, The window is big and high, providing enough light for an overall well lit image. Now we opened the curtains of the opposing window, giving a beautiful fill in light from the left.
To all aspiring model photographers out there, I hope you learnt something from these short explanations.
To all the others, I hope you enjoyed the images.
A big thank you to Fien for her confidence and cooperation. She never posed before, I think she did really well. Above that she’s a charm to work with. A big thank you also to the owners of The Mansion, for giving me continued access to this magnificent building.
see you again soon,
Another model post. For a change I went outdoors with my model. Fall had turned the so called ‘Muziekbos’ (Music Forest) into this wonderful palette of fall colors the last few weeks, and I found it a pity not to use this amazing environment for my next shoot.
I met Fien at Bioplanet Ghent (that’s what shopping organic stuff is good for 😉 ) and after checking my blog she agreed for a model shoot. We met at my place, and Nathalie couldn’t resist of making a quick hairdo. I think it suited well for this romantic backdrop.
Off for shooting, rather cold outside temperatures, but Fien didn’t complain at all. Still we didn’t make this a long session, about 40 minutes. The gray covered sky provided very soft natural light, good for outside portraits.
I mixed black and white and color images in this set. I get to like BW images more and more, but couldn’t have converted them all and loose those great fall colors.
I hope you like the images, taken with my trusty Canon 5D II and 24-50-100 mm lenses.
Oh, and during the shoot, we stumbled upon Bart Heirweg, a very good landscape photographer from Belgium. He was shooting fall colors too, but with a slightly different approach. 😉 You should check out his website, he makes the most amazing landscape images, and offers his knowledge in different workshops. Website
See you again soon for part II of this shoot meeting: Fien at The Mansion. Those images will follow later this week.