So much inspiration is not always good for me. That’s what I discovered when approaching my first shoot for the Unsplash Photo Club this month. I’m participating in all of them this time around. Last time I tried but couldn’t find time to do ‘tiny’, and I didn’t have the lenses needed for the ‘wide-angle’ topic.
I want to go out of my comfort zone, and am going to do so —just not straight out of the gate. I found myself not knowing where to start this time around. I wanted to do it all, and couldn’t even come up with a mood board and plan. I think it was an inspiration overload. I needed to take a step back.
So I went to what feels more natural for me —soft, feminine, simple, with natural lighting.
Scenes with a flower element and pastels. Maybe at this point that is the style I’m most known for? That said I still prefer travel & street photography above all other forms of photography. I’m going to do some of the latter soon with my 50mm (for Photo Club Claudio on Unsplash).
"Ma'am, step away from the computer."
Kill your darlings.
Going back to what feels good, and natural is fine. The thing is I keep making either vertical or horizontal only. I hardly ever switch things up. I even have the habit of shooting either at an angle or flatlay —not both. What a shame. It’s rather bland when you see the session in a gallery. Had I been shooting for a client it would be a failure. I literally have helped businesses put together shot lists, so why don’t I do this for my own work? “Think of these shots, and these and get them all.” Meanwhile I’ve got another collection of all vertical shots at one angle.
Another lesson learned. Switch things up. I’m also going to try and shoot some cocktails or some sort of drink so I can try shooting with backlight. Almost all of my recent photos were lit from the side. Not such a big deal –for food and florals it is hands down the best light for most scenes. It gives a photo depth and texture in camera. It’s such an attractive way to light your scene. A few foam core boards and you can either bounce off the light or use it to fill in the shadows. (Note: I use two sided boards so I can switch from black to white depending on what I need).
White Balance is not my friend. At least not yet.
Notice that mismatch white balance I’ve got going on? I shoot with natural light and I literally curse the sun when it breaks away from the clouds. The light is constantly changing no matter how I try and contain it I get a mismatched white balance. Lightroom!! Yeah, I know but I have yet to master it. Another thing to learn. I’ll do it, you’ll see. If anything I am determined to master this photography journey I’m on!
Note: With my new camera I can shoot using my smartphone. I notice that when I import the tethered photos and the ones shot with my phone (memory card) the white balance doesn’t match up. This could be because I shoot one way early on and switch later, then the lighting has changed (most likely). I am wondering if it is because I see things differently on my phone?? I am not sure if I have my phones screen light on full when I shoot!?!? Oh, this could explain things! I use my Histogram on the camera, and with tethering. Histogram is my friend! The Canon phone app doesn’t have a Histogram view. I’m going to test this out tomorrow when I shoot for the Comfort Food Photo Club!
Taking with me.
So I’ve learned a few things once again. It’s never ending and I’m so here for it. I curse the day I no longer want to learn.
I’ve learned I need to shoot different angles. Like; overhead, flat-lay, angle, as well as both horizontal and vertical. To try different lighting to give my portfolio a little boost. Read up and watch more videos on white balance. I’ll need to also experiment more with using my smartphone to shoot remotely. I’ve also learned to take a step back when I’m overloaded with inspiration.
Cierra is coming the weekend after next to shoot with me. She’s also part of the Photo Club on Unsplash. We’re going to the rooftop terrace to try some hard lighting photography. I really want to try something new!
Tomorrow I’ll be shooting comfort food because we’re eating lasagna tomorrow evening. We don’t eat it a lot so it’s a nice treat. Also it can be made during the day and warmed up so the natural lighting won’t be an issue. So stay tuned for that. I’ll also be doing some type of street photography soon. I’m thinking a walk, with my mask in the weekend just through the neighborhood close by. There’s a market, the trams are riding and people can now shop with an appointment. I’ll stay safe and see what I can capture. It pains me that the Eurovision Song Festival is in going to be here in Rotterdam but without the streets filled with extravagant happy party goers. What fun that would be to photograph! I’m going to also give the monochromic shots a try. I’ll do most likely food & floral. I’m thinking some drinks with back lighting and some hard shadows (hard light). Stay tuned!