Whispering Pines

What an amazing photoshoot to start 2018; we had a beautiful location, an amazing model and thankfully no rain! We located this beautiful cabin in East Sussex which the owners were happy for us to use, it had lovely grounds around the property, a lake and a boat right outside it’s front door.

The first images were taken on the peer right outside the cabin, after a few standing shots I thought it would be a great idea to try sitting on the edge of the peer only problem was that it was surrounded by a lake that was too deep to stand in. Fortunately the cabin had a lovely row boat which we used to get far enough around to get the shot.

Here is a picture of me keeping extremely still so that I don't rock the boat and fall right into the water.  To the top left of the image you can see the corner of a large octabank with a layer of diffusion lighting the model, I'm also using a 120mm macro lens   The final image

Here is a picture of me keeping extremely still so that I don't rock the boat and fall right into the water.

To the top left of the image you can see the corner of a large octabank with a layer of diffusion lighting the model, I'm also using a 120mm macro lens 

The final image

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The next image was taken in a tree which Megan was more than happy to climb, I think the only worried one was me but there was no need to worry, Megan was great, she climbed right up and we got to shooting.

Here's an image of the lighting set up for the tree shot, I have a octabank as my main light on the highest power setting, whilst I have a gridded, silver beauty dish on a lower power setting providing fill.

Here is the final image

Here is the final image

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Next we wanted to get a shot of Megan cutting and eating an apple, this was a tricky shot for many reasons including the fact that she would be using a very sharp survival knife. just like the tree however Megan was eager to jump in and it turned out great. See below

For this shot I placed the octabank, high up and off camera right as my key light (see below) and a the gridded, silver beauty dish as my rim light, behind Megan, off camera left and angled downwards. On my 50mm lens I used a 0.6 ND filter to allow me to open up my aperture and better separate Megan from the background.

For this shot I placed the octabank, high up and off camera right as my key light (see below) and a the gridded, silver beauty dish as my rim light, behind Megan, off camera left and angled downwards. On my 50mm lens I used a 0.6 ND filter to allow me to open up my aperture and better separate Megan from the background.

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Here is a picture so you can see the octabank placement 

Here is a picture so you can see the octabank placement 

Next it was onto the lake to capture the images I was most excited about since seeing the boat when arriving at the cabin. 

For this light set up I used a set up very similar to the tree shot with the octabank off camera right, angled downwards as my main light and the gridded silver beauty dish off camera left as fill.

Once I got a few of the close ups we pushed our model Megan further out into the lake and handed her an oar. (We won't go into the fact that Georgina fell into the lake whilst trying to do this the first time) Check out the wide shot and close up below:

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With such an authentic location I wanted to capture some images of Megan in front of the rustic looking cabin. For these shots I wanted it to feel more like the sun was beginning to set, unfortunately with it being a cold, cloudy day there was no chance of that happening and so it was out with my trusty beauty dish. For this shot I used only one Broncolor Siros L light, very high up and angled downwards, I also removed the grid on the beauty dish to throw the light more and imitate direct sunlight.

The only light is the beauty dish off camera right, the octabank to the left of the image is not on.

The only light is the beauty dish off camera right, the octabank to the left of the image is not on.

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After capturing the last outdoor shots we moved inside the cabin to capture the last set of images.

There wasn't much room inside the cabin for large lights but I still wanted to use the octabank in order to create a nice wash of light across the scene. In this picture you can see how close the octabank is with myself squeezing in front of it to get the shot. What you can't see if off camera left I have again used a gridded beauty dish to add some fill light.

Check out the result below

Check out the result below

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Lastly we couldn't leave without capturing some images in front of the cabins fireplace, it took us a few goes to light it but once we did we were able to capture some really beautiful shots. To help amplify the orange light coming from the fireplace and add more warmth to the scene I covered a strobe with CTO gel and placed it on the floor next to the fireplace, angling it upwards. To the left of camera I used a strobe on a low power setting with the beauty dish and grid attached to add some subtle fill light. See below 

Check out the full set of images from the shoot below

Model: Megan Waters

MUA Georgina Davies

Autumn Sun

The idea I had in mind for this editorial was to shoot mainly outdoors with a mix of studio. I wanted this shoot to have a natural effortless feel and so I set out to find a suitable outdoor location. Along with Georgina I ventured into a large country park that we knew well, this time we went deeper in than we had before and I'm glad we did as we came across some great locations, the problem was that it was a very overcast day when scouting, it even began to rain heavily just before we found the last location.

As I planned this shoot to be a on a sunny day which the forecast ahead said it would be I had to use a bit of imagination as to what the scenes would possibly look like with sun light running across them. Here are some of the scouting images:

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Happy with the locations we found I began looking for our model. Usually it can take me days when trying to find the right model for a shoot but after only a few hours of searching I came across Tiana. Tiana was tall, beautiful and had lovely natural curly hair, she was perfect for what I had in mind. I reached out to her and thankfully she was interested in working with me on this shoot. With my model secured, I booked a studio not far from the outdoor location so that we wouldn't have too much travelling time between both. Georgina then began deciding on makeup ideas and looking at outfits for the shoot, she managed to find outfits that suited the natural warm feel I was going for which was great.

The next tricky part came when deciding how I was going to tie the studio images together with the outdoor ones. I came across a green background paper which at first I was hesitant about using as I felt it might be too on the nose but in the end I decided to go for it.

On the day of the shoot we got into the studio, I put on some music and Georgina got to work on the hair & makeup. I began shooting the first look and I’m happy to say the green paper worked out great, it was a very light green which became even brighter when the strobes hit it and so it was perfect for what I wanted. For these shots I used a two light setup, I used a large octabank with diffuser, high up, angled down and off camera right for a soft wash of light over Tiana and I used a small gridded beauty dish behind Tiana for a harder rim light.

The studio also had an infinity cove so without having to waste time changing papers it was nice to get some seamless shots as well.

The studio also had an infinity cove so without having to waste time changing papers it was nice to get some seamless shots as well.

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Here's an image of the full seamless set up:

For the main light I used a large octabank, high up, tilted down at an angle and off camera right, for my background I used to square softboxes at even heights and lastly I used the black sides of two polystyrene boards (which definitely looked like an animal of some kind had taken a bite out of them 😬) to swallow up some of the light and control the amount of spill onto my subject. (For the black and white image present in the final editorial images, I kept the setup the same but simply turned off my main light.)

After a few more outfit changes it was a wrap at the studio, so we loaded back up the cars and set off. As we drove the sun came out in full force and I was very excited to get shooting. We reached the location in good time and began carrying the equipment to the first location. The outfits Georgina had chosen for this setup worked beautifully along with the sunlight which enhanced the scene.

Next was the lake shot which I was very excited about, Tiana was a trooper and got straight in, I'll admit I was more reluctant to wade into the water but once in we began shooting and I loved every minute of it.

Lastly we moved onto the final setup of the day which was to be the tree shots, I loved the look of this tree the first time I saw it and I was happy to see it looked even nicer with streaks of sunlight running through it. The clouds had begun to move over head blocking out the sun for minutes at a time and so I used the extra time to get my lighting where I wanted it, then as the sun peaked through the clouds all there was for me to do was measure for the ambient light and adjust my strobe settings accordingly.

From the previews alone I could see the images were looking great, Tiana moved really well, changing after each shot, the only time I had to stop was whenever the sun would disappear behind the clouds again. This shot was a simple setup, I used a large octabank just behind me, off camera left as my main light and I used the sun behind my subject as my backlight, the rest was just balancing the two for the exposure I wanted.

Here is the finished image:

Lastly I had recently seen Tarzan in the cinemas and really loved a scene where Margot Robbie and Alexander Skarsgård were in a tree in formal clothing it was a nice mix of everyday wear (in the 1800's) and nature. Although we weren't in a jungle... or the 1800's I still liked the idea and so I asked Tiana if she wouldn't mind climbing onto the tree and just like the lake before I had even finished my sentence she was already half way up! 

The sun filtering through the trees was creating some lovely light streaks and I wanted to keep those in the shot and so I moved my octabank far away from my subject directly in the direction of the sun and put it on a low power setting to just help give the light that was already there a little kick.

Here was the final image:

This was another fantastic shoot and we came away with some fantastic images. A big thank you to Tiana for being so open to ideas and easy to work with and as always a big thank you to Georgina for not only the hair & makeup but also her assistance on this shoot.

Check out the full editorial below:

Sun & Smoke

I decided to set up a shoot in order to add some more content to my portfolio, I knew for the first set up I wanted to shoot outdoors, we'd come across this great location a few weeks previously and loved it. After a spot of London weather in the morning we were unsure if we were going to still head outdoors but with some luck a small window of opportunity opened up for us and we made a dash to the location. The first thing I looked for was where the light was falling and found a spot that looked perfect.

 

For the second set-up I had two options I wanted to try, over backdrop or on top of a car using smoke grenades... We went with the smoke grenades :)

The smoke grenades only lasted for 30 seconds so I knew once we started shooting we had to get it right, I set up the lighting and locked them in, once I was happy with the way they looked we used a smoke grenade to test how it would appear in the scene and how the light would effect it. They worked great! Apart from a little bit of coughing from all of us and laughing when we realised how much smoke actually came out of these things we managed to get some great images, Jasmin moved fluently with the smoke giving a great performance all I had to do was capture it.

This was a fun shoot with a bit of experimentation and I look forward to trying out a few more crazy ideas soon!

Tom

Recently I got the chance to shoot a friend which is always nice because you already have a good connection and good chemistry is always great for photography. For this shoot I really wanted to get a 1940’s style set-up for Tom and so after brainstorming and getting a few necessary items together i.e, braces, cigars, a hat, a gramophone etc… we went looking for the hardest part of the shoot, which was finding a setting in which the images could be deemed believable. Luckily we found a place which had great olden style rooms and a vintage look which was perfect for what we had in mind.

Here you can see a image of the room and the set-up we had for one of the shots with Tom and Nyah.     For this set-up I used an octabank as my main light and a gridded beauty dish as my rim light. To help add some warmth into the image and help fill in some of the shadows I also used another strobe with some CTO gel pointed low and upwards towards both models. (The fourth strobe to the left of me is not firing.)

Here you can see a image of the room and the set-up we had for one of the shots with Tom and Nyah. 

For this set-up I used an octabank as my main light and a gridded beauty dish as my rim light. To help add some warmth into the image and help fill in some of the shadows I also used another strobe with some CTO gel pointed low and upwards towards both models. (The fourth strobe to the left of me is not firing.)

For the second set-up we wanted to capture some cool natural shots of Tom on a small pier we’d found while scouting a few weeks prior to the shoot. For these shots I used only one light, a large octabank which you can see in the image below:

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Staying on schedule we then moved on to the other side of the pier near some fields to catch the sunset which didn’t disappoint. Below you can see where I placed the octabank and also how strong and how warm the sun is as a backlight.

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I had a lot of fun on this shoot and it hardly felt like work even when humping my hefty battery pack and strobes through the woods.

Check out the final images from the shoot below, I’ve included a shot with just the sun as a backlight as it reminded of when I first began taking pictures before all the lighting and equipment when I focused more on the simple things :)

Twins!

For this shoot I wanted to take some images in central London and of course the most emptiest time to do that is very early in the morning, so with two very willing models we set out to catch the sunrise. The downside of shooting near the river thames is that it is absolutely freezing and so I spent the morning pretending I was on a beach somewhere but for the twins and my assistant it was a cold day at the north pole. 

In the end we managed to get the shots we needed before heading back to the warmth for the final set-up of the day. Here are some of the shots:

For the second part of the shoot I had enlisted the help of my dad to put together a wooden background a few days prior to the shoot as I felt it would work nicely with both models skin tones. After the first few shots I could see that the wood was a great choice and that it worked well.

I used three lights on this set-up a large octabank as my main light slightly feathered, a small soft box as my side light and another small soft box as my fill light. Setting up the lights in this way created some very interesting highlights and shadows and I got the images I needed to add to my portfolio.

Paint & Fire
 © William Henry

 © William Henry

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So this weekend I had two models come down to shoot. The first girl Matea was absolutely lovely and a pleasure to work with. Me and my partner in crime had decided we wanted to be a bit more creative with this portrait which was to be done on a grey background that day and so after banging our heads together for a while we decided to massacre it with paint! We headed off to the shops and picked up some acrylic paints all different colours (gold actually ended up looking the best) and headed back to the studio where we spent the evening slashing the air with paint bushes till the whole backdrop was filled, it was actually a lot of fun. Afterwards we knew we'd need an outfit to go along with the shoot and to save the model turning up and having a heart attack once we'd told her we were going to have to paint some of her clothes, so we decided to find some of our own to destroy :). We managed to scrounge together a pair of dungarees and an old, slightly dishevelled looking grey jumper. Together they looked perfect, I could already see the shot and so we got to painting the clothes and left them to dry overnight. Matea arrived in the morning and we explained to her the concept for the shoot that day, she was super excited and I knew then that it was going to be great. Two lights were used for this shoot, I started off withe a large octabank as my main light before adding a small beauty dish as my rim. I loved how the images were taking shape with help from the paint splattered background & clothes, the only thing for me to do was work with Matea to get the right expressions. Towards the end of the shoot I decided to try something a little different, I removed the octabank and decided to use the beauty dish with grid as my main and only light source. The effect was better than I had hoped and after moving Matea around a bit  I got the two shots from that set-up I wanted. It was a hard choice but in the end I decided to go for the shots using the beauty dish as I felt it gave a little something more to these particular portraits. You can still check out the shots using the octabank above I love them as well and who knows my choice might change over time :)

 

 

Fire

The second model for the day was a girl by the name of Lulu. Most times a model will turn up ready to be moulded and other times they will turn up with their hair on fire! Which we were I admit a little shocked to see at first but rather than be like oh wow! That was not the colour of your hair when I saw your pictures! I decided to make the best of the situation and so we grabbed our orange paper to use as a backdrop which worked well with her hair, luckily Lulu had a warm smile that definitely went with her hair and the first set of shots went smoothly. Later looking at her hair again I had another idea, it was almost sunset and I thought what would it be like to have Lulu in the forest backlit by the sun with the orange in her hair... it was just an idea but I thought why not and so we headed off to a forest I knew well and after a short walk found the perfect place to set up. The sun was just low enough to be peaking through the trees backlighting the model and giving me a nice camera flare. I used one light for these shots, my octabank up high just off centre left which helped me to get a nice wash of light over my model and the pictures turned out great!

So in the end the hair worked out perfectly not that I hope to be surprised often but I like to know that if it does happen again that I'm ready, you never know.

 © William Henry

 © William Henry