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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I haven't quite got this picture thing down yet. I took a few test pics with some new backgrounds. Results are much beter than other pics I have come out with.

What do you think...be nice now :giggle

Too much lighting on this and I was much too close.
 
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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Same background as before, adjusted the lighting and moved back a little.

BTW, this is a metallic gold background
 
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Blue background.

This background cut out a lot of the lights and produced some pretty decent pics :cheers
 
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
#2 is definately better. I'm trying to get the hang of this picture thing as well. It's not as easy as it looks. :cheers
 
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
All black background.

I really like this background, but I know the pics looked lighter when I took them.

Kinda dark, but it looks pretty good nonetheless.

I think I am going to play with the photoshop a little and see if I can get better results by manipulating the picture for better results.
 
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I just have two halogen lamps pointing directy at the model and the flash from the camera.

The lights are positioned about 2 feet away from the model.

I tried shooting without the flash, but the flash seems to work a bit better as the pics are really dark without the flash :confused
 
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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
Try without the flash at all, but add more light maybe. I think the flash is making it look a little washed out maybe.

(listen to me, I don't even have a camera! :giggle )
 
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
They look really bland without the flash, so I keep the flash on.

Any tips from just looking at those pics.

I want to be able to get to the point to where I see the small detailed writing on the models.
 

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I've always used the flash myself even though most of the advice in close up photography is not to, simply because all of my attempts to not use flash end up looking like the dead of night! But what has helped hugely is the fact that the flash on my new camera is mounted well above the direct line of vision of the lens so you don't get huge hot spots of relected light in the middle of your pic (like in the headlights and on the windows). If your flash is not high mounted, then you could use a remote flash (if your camera can be configured to fire one) set at a higher level than your lens or even relflecting it's light indirectly onto the model for a more diffuse lighting effect.
 

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Try some NEUTRAL ground, like grey. A white bg can cause a "washout" on the pic, and black will be too dark and you'll try to overcompensate on the lighting. A reflective bg is for those who really know what they're doing, because it can seriously screw up your lighting. Go with something plain like grey and you'll see it's much easier to nail down the lighting.
 
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
:iagree All black or all white bg are tricky to use. The camera light metering system will be tricked into under or over exposing your subject. Neutral color bg is the way to go. It is also tempting to use flash and doing so will make your subject appear flat. Try using additional light source instead. I shouldn't comment much as my pics leave alot to be desire. Nice CLK-GTR btw. :nicejob
 

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Flash = bad! :danbanna :danbanna :danbanna

I stopped using flash long time ago (even though I did a short experiment with a ring flash), and when I DID use flash, it was always BOUNCE flash and not pointed directly at the model...

Here's a suggestion... I am assuming that you have a camera tripod when I say this...

Have one light shine down on the model. Have the other light illuminate from the side. Experiment with the aim of the lights to minimize reflections and 'hot spots' that the camera sees. Next, turn the flash on your camera off. Set the camera on Aperture Priority setting and set the f-stop to the highest possible setting in order to maximize your depth of field. The camera will give you a long exposure time, but the end results will be more to your liking, I predict. If you don't have a remote shutter release, utilize the self timer feature to release the shutter in order to avoid camera shake and the resulting blurring of the pic. Take different pics with different lighting arrangements so you get a good variety to choose from. Next, it's off to edit them...

Once you import the pic into Photoshop (or other editing program), you will most likely find that it appears flat and underexposed. No problem. Create an adjustment layer for levels and adjust the highlight slider to the left until the highlights brighten. You may have to read up on adjusting levels in the documentation. After you get a good Levels layer, create another adjustment layer and adjust hue/saturation until you get a result you like. Then, duplicate the background layer and, while it is highlighted in the layer menu, go into filters and perform an Unsharp Mask. Keep the radius and threshold values very low, but play around and see what it does for you. Too much unsharp mask is not a good thing.

As I have mentioned many times before, you can only do so much with the camera itself. You can adjust the lighting to get good balance, just the right shadows and minimal glare, but at some point you will have to edit the pic on computer in order to take it to the next level.

And that, folks, is my :mine worth!
 

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