“Strong Elegance” is the core feeling when creating this through and through intense portrait series.
Incorporating elements that represent a classic and sophisticated touch and the apparent hardness visible every now and then plays the antagonistic counterpart to Dominika’s enchanting smile.
The Visual Approach
The shoot sequence is divided in two parts:
- To develop the story, I start with wide angle shots to draw the attention to the architectural features which are in this palace very classical. Further, the piano is an important component that helps to reflect the elegance.
- Continuing the second part of my shoot, I create the final, closer framed portraits. I use a long lens and an open aperture to visually separate the model from the background.
Beautification & Styling
- Dark eye shadows and eye lines support the “strength”. On top of this, the greatly defined hair line and form accentuate the desired elegance.
- A long black transparent dress and the garter belt – shown in a second variant – intensify this classic look.
Dominika’s acting is subtle. For reflecting the distant and sophisticated feel she has to pose unagitated and rather gentle. But after when it comes to the portrait session we break in with some unexpected smiles and a more warm expression and softer posture.
Lighting Concept: Mixed Lighting Situation
Huge windows delivering dimmed sun light (ambient light) helps me when mixing with a medium-hard key light. The basic lighting-look needs to be more defined, a bit sharper and a bit cooler in overall temperature.
Key Light (+ Catch Lights)
The key light has the basic job to create a semi-soft light volume from the front and at the same time it needs to be balanced with the ambient light.
The key is equipped with a smaller softbox in order to produce an equal light characteristic coming from the front. It will also create the catchlight in the model’s eyes.
Rim & Hair Light (Function 1)
The fill light from behind left serves as a rim light and helps to separate the model from the background. This becomes especially visible at those areas where the dark fabric and the black parts of the piano’s panel cross.
To form the light beam, I first of all attach a stripbox which narrows down the beam. Then I use some additional fabric grid to limit the light from spilling.
Rim Light: Adding An Effect (Function 2)
As an enhancement to the basic rim light, I attach an orange gel to it in order to color the tonality on the hair.
The orange is somewhat a complimentary color to the set’s greenish appearance and provides additional dimensionality and touch to the imagery.
This gives the final result a more bold and edgy look.
- 2x 400 Ws Monoblocs
- Key light: Softbox 60x90cm / 2x3’, powered @around 350 WS
- Rim/Effect Light: Stripbox 22x48cm / 9x18’’ w/Fabric Grid & Orange Gel (CTO), powered @around 200
- Focal Range: 18-200mm
- ISO 100