Heroines by Ian Reyes

Heroines by Ian Reyes Iron Man Batman

Heroines by Ian Reyes Iron Man

Heroines by Ian Reyess Hulk

Heroines by Ian Reyes Super Man

Heroines by Ian Reyes

More to see at fancy-tshirts.com

How the Shot was Done: SNK Police Cosplay

Cosplay-shoot-first-shot

I do a lot of cosplay (short for costume play) photography with friends, and I was asked by some to do a cosplay crossover photo shot (Shingeki no Kyojin / Psycho Pass) with them. They sent me some reference shots from which I decided to create a slightly futuristic, detective movie kind of look. I also thought I’d experiment with shooting to fit a wide movie crop to suit the look of the shoot. In this article I’ll show you how I set up, shot and processed two photos from the shoot, including the one above. If you’d like to see more photos from the shoot, you can do so here.

So on to how the shot was done . . .

The right location

Our location for the shoot was the rear of Federation Square in Melbourne, Australia. It’s a futuristic looking building with lots of metal, glass and interesting angles in its construction. For the shot above I wanted to take advantage of these textures to accentuate the futuristic look, so we first went to the alcove depicted below in this behind the scenes photo.

Cosplay-shoot-first-shot-BTS

Lighting the shot

It was dusk so there was little light getting into the alcove from what became camera left. I wanted to keep that light in the shot as a fill, but my key light was going to be a ring flash – my Orbis ring flash. This kind of light gives a dramatic look with almost no shadow. It’s stark and flat but works well with this kind of scene. In my first test shot I noticed a fantastic unexpected effect of the brushed metal backdrop: anistropic reflection. This created a bright diagonal streak across the back of the shot.

To get the right balance of fill to key, I set the camera to 1/125sec f/2.8 ISO160 and adjusted the power on the flash to get the right brightness for the shot. This ended up being towards the bottom end of the flash power. Following is a lighting diagram and the photo as it came out of camera:

Cosplay-shoot-first-shot-diagram

Cosplay-shoot-first-shot-raw

Processing the image

In post processing the major changes I made were to increase the contrast and clarity, as well as a significant temperature move towards blue, and tint shift to green. With a movie aspect ratio crop and heavy vignette, plus a few small tweaks to the exposure settings, I ended up with this final photo (below).

Cosplay-shoot-first-shot

The second location shoot

I love the self-conscious, melodramatic, slow motion walking scenes in movies, and these guys’ outfits were perfect for a shot like that. I wanted to keep a consistent look with the first shot, but give this one its own twist. To do this I took the group out into an area with more space and a cool geometric glass patterned wall as the backdrop. I added a pair of flashes behind the group for some rim lighting, but I deliberately chose to keep them in view for some dramatic lens flares. I replaced the ring flash with an on-camera flash and balanced that to be under the exposure from the rim lighting. This gave me a low key dramatic look (drama was the theme of the night!). Again I set the camera exposure to just give a hint of the background – 1/40sec f/4.5 ISO500 – and dialed the power of the flash to get the balance I was after.

Rather than try and pose the shot, which would look too forced, I got them into a staggered starting position and simply asked them all to walk toward the camera. To get them in an appropriate mood and make them feel badass, I played this tune (which I consider to be the best slow walking music ever) on my phone and it totally did the trick.

Following is a lighting diagram and the photo straight out of the camera.

Cosplay-shoot-second-shot-diagram

Cosplay-shoot-second-shot-raw

I processed this photo in essentially the same way as the previous shot, to get a consistent look and feel between it and the rest of the photos in the shoot. Please visit this gallery to see all the images at a decent size.

Cosplay-shoot-second-shot

I really love cosplay photography because I get to go crazy and pull out all the creative stops, to make over the top photos, that suit the over the top characters and plot from anime. I’m fortunate to have fun, creative and energetic friends to work with to create these shots. If you’d like to see more of my cosplay and other photo shoots, you should like my Facebook page where I post photos regularly, and occasionally discuss how they were made.

Which of the two shots is your favourite, and why?

Models featured in these photos:

  • Ettelle
  • Jase Lube-Sama
  • KnRai
  • Kobito Cosplay
  • Mei at Play

The post How the Shot was Done: SNK Police Cosplay by Neil Creek appeared first on Digital Photography School.

Hulk! Heroins by Ian Reyes

Hulk Heroins by Ian Reyes 1 650x999 Hulk! Heroins by Ian Reyes

Hulk Heroins by Ian Reyes 2 650x1073 Hulk! Heroins by Ian Reyes

Hulk Heroins by Ian Reyes 3 650x1073 Hulk! Heroins by Ian Reyes

Specialties
Photography, Advertising, Photomanipulation, Art Direction
Check out more here.

Using Flash Sync and Flash Exposure Modes

Many people never even use their flash sync, but this option is one of the many advantages of digital photography. In almost any DSLR camera, you will find flash sync settings that you most certainly should not ignore.

Flash sync can certainly turn good photography into amazing photography. Learning about flash sync is not something that you should put off. Your camera also includes flash exposure modes that are a must for combining flash lighting with exposure for a better metered image.

Just what is Flash Sync?

There are many reasons why most people do not even use flash sync. Many people simply do not realize it is an option. Some people may find the sync in their camera, but they may have no idea what it does. Others may think that flash sync actually is not needed for that many images. However, the more you learn about this technology, the more you will find that you can use it in digital photography. The first step to properly using flash sync will be to understand just what it is.

In essence, flash sync has to do with when the flash actually fires during the exposure. It is possible to change when the flash fires for various effects for the image. At times, using flash sync is a good way to compensate for certain difficult lighting situations. At other times, you may want to use flash sync to create specific artistic or dramatic effects in your photography.

The Three Flash Sync Settings

On any digital camera, you are going to have a choice of flash sync settings. You need to understand just what each of these settings is and you will need to know how they can be used in digital photography for various lighting situations. Below, you will find a breakdown of the three settings so that you can better understand their purpose.

Front Sync (Front Curtain Sync)
This is when the flash will fire at the very beginning of the image exposure and this is generally the default sync for a camera. However, this is not a sync that you will want to use in many situations. If the subject is moving, you could end up with a problem. When the flash fires at the beginning, the shutter speed stays open and your subject moves, you will end up with something called ghosting. The image will appear as if there is a ghost in front of the subject. It will be blurry and streaky. Generally, you do not want to use front sync for moving subjects unless you are doing something artistic.

Rear Sync (Rear Curtain Sync)
With this type of sync, the flash will fire at the end of the exposure. If the subject is moving, you will still end up with ghosting, but it will be a different kind of ghosting. In this type of situation, you will have a sharper subject with slight ghosting and what looks like streaks behind the subject. In many situations, this is an excellent way to translate motion. However, if you want a clear, crisp image, you will not get it with rear flash.

Slow Sync
With this mode, your camera will do two things. It will slow down the shutter speed deliberately and it will slow down the flash. What does this accomplish? Often, there are background details that will not be illuminated by the flash in most situations. When you want those details to be in focus, you can use this sync. The slow sync will slow the shutter speed enough to make sure light gets to those background details. To use slow sync, you must keep the camera very still and you will not want to use it for subjects in motion.

Exposure and Flash Exposure Modes

Camera exposure has already been discussed and you may have a good idea of how to use various exposure settings in digital photography. However, you also need to know more about flash exposure. These modes will be able to combine all of the elements of exposure along with the elements of the flash and the flash sync to create a better metered image. Your camera will include several different flash exposure modes that you will need to know how to use. They may go by different “techie” sounding names, but the exposure modes available in your camera include the following four.

TTL (through the lens)
This type of metering measures the exposure through the camera lens to set the flash. This method is useful in most situations. However, in some situations where light bounces strongly off the subject, this mode may lead to washed out images.

Pre-Flash
This method of flash metering works by the camera actually firing a flash before the image is taken. The camera uses the metering information of that pre-flash to set the exposure. This is useful when you are using certain elements with a flash like a diffuser or a darkener that could otherwise confuse the camera.
Integrated
This method also makes use of a pre-flash, but the camera actually integrates the information provided into the exposure before it ever takes a picture. With this method, the camera will be able to avoid washed out images in which light bounces off the subject.

Manual
In this method, you will be in full control. You will decide the level of strength that the flash uses and you will set the exposure. This method can take a great deal of patience and does include a learning curve. Your digital photography will take longer and you will need to be prepared for this. This method will not be the best option when you need to take pictures quickly.

When you will be using a flash in your digital photography, it is vital that you learn how to use flash sync as well as flash exposure settings. Through these two tools, you can gain much more control over your camera, your flash and your digital photography overall.