Outdoor Portrait Photography

Of all the different types of photography I’ve tried, the one I find very challenging is portrait photography – especially when working outdoors where the elements of nature are always unpredictable. As they say however, practice makes perfect, so yesterday I went out for another round.

Admittedly though, this was not solely my idea.To my pleasant surprise it was Daria who came up with the initiative, at the same time volunteering herself as my model. Definitely an interesting turn of events, as she is usually simply an observer, occasionally nagging me about how long it takes me to take a single shot! Needless to say I didn’t hesitate a second, so just before sunset we left the house on a quest to find a decent photo location. Our short drive brought us to an abandoned hotel in the middle of Nicosia, which after closing due to financial problems a good decade ago, it has been left in a state of decomposition – a perfect location for a photo shoot!

I’ve been recently reading  about single light portraits and the dramatic effect they can produce. Since I only own a single speedlight, one can understand my interest in this technique! The picture below is one of the 2-3 decent pictures I managed to take during our 30-minute on-location shoot. For this shot, the flash gun was mounted off-camera on a tripod, elevated high up and aimed downwards towards Daria. Through the magic settings of camera and flash exposure, I managed to fully control both the ambient light and the light output of the flash gun. The resulting picture was then converted into B&W in Adobe Lightroom 4, with a few adjustments made to contrast and clarity.

Daria Outdoor Portrait - 1920cTaken with my Canon 60D, Canon 24-70mm F2.8L lens, at ISO 160, F8.0, 1/200 sec. Flash output was set to 1/2.

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