Monday, December 20, 2010

Shoot the Photographer : Kaveh Fanian

A little while ago (long time ago actually), I got to hang out with my best photography buddy Kaveh Fanian, a landscape and nature photographer. I've known Kaveh from his uni days (he has graduated and leaving me behind). Kaveh was doing his usual inspirational landscape shooting which does best. He decided to capture the beauty of Watson Bay which is one of the famous tourist places in Sydney.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Point of Interest

After shooting my BMW die cast toy car for the last couple of weeks (the post can be found here and here), I decided that I should start shooting something else. Again, flickr has become my source of inspiration. I started to browse through flickr to find what image should I take. Inspired by one of the picture I found, I decided to shoot something from my daily use.. Spoon and fork.
I always love the idea on how normal simple stuff like spoon and fork becomes very interesting photograph if you compose and lit it correctly. That's why I'm so excited to start this 'project'. I started by arranging my spoon and fork so that it would look nice. After a few try, I decided that I will cross the spoon and the fork together.
Still using my Nikon D40 camera and a Nikon SB-20 as my light source, I lit the spoon and fork using a bare flash. The result? Not good. Since spoon and fork are very reflective, I got a hot spot on one part of the spoon while the rest are dark. I need more diffused light. That's when I decide to make a light box.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Try to do a MacGyver, if you don't have something then try to create one!

My Home Made Lightbox
What if you don't have something that you need? Well then either you could buy it or you could make it yourself. A few months ago, I was about to list my lens to sell it on ebay and needed to get several snaps of it for the ads. I could simply go out and buy a $80 lightbox but then again I thought I would rather spend it on something else so it is the MIY (make it yourself) solution. One would ask why would you need a lightbox in the first place. Well as we all know that if we could make it as attractive as possible. then the item would sell at a higher price That is why you see people use decorations in shops and all sort of other elements to attract buyers. Well it's the same case here, by using a lightbox you are basically creating a nicer lighting and cleaner  background larger. The lightings are improved when the lightbox is used when compared to  using a bare bulb as the larger diffusion materials creates a larger lightsource which in turns softens the light (see to know more about lightings).  To put it simple, basically I am trying to imitate the how the PROS shoot their products for ads. To create the lightbox, I need to find a frame which can hold my diffusion materials, so basically searched and found an unused box which I could use as a frame to attach my diffusion materials, then I started cutting a few of the sides off. Then, I went to the kitchen to find baking paper to be used for diffusion materials. The baking paper were glued to the sides of the box. As I've got only two lights at that time, I covered one side using aluminium foil with the intention of it acting as a reflector.  Furthermore, I went and bought a $1.50 white cardboard to be used as my backdrop. My finished lightbox is shown above. I know it is not pretty, but then again it'll do the job, :).

Monday, October 25, 2010

It's All About See-ing the Light

_MG_0965 This was from an experience that I've got while shooting for people going on vacations to Sydney. Surely, this was one of my most interesting assignments that I ever had. So basically, I had to tag along to places where these guys were visiting and try to create some decent pictures for them. There were several places that they've visited but Darling Harbour was the memorable one, at least for me. It was late in the afternoon where the sun was going down and the place was in the shade.
This in turn created several problems for taking a photograph:
Firstly, the pictures will be flat (meaning lacking in contrast and colors as well).
Secondly, it is not easy to take good photographs especially when you are at a location (tourist places)  where you are surrounded by lots of people  buzzing around (thinking of how to pose them, camera setting, compositions, trying to remove distracting elements from your picture, worrying that your gear could get stolen, etc2).

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Playing with Toy Car (2)

Last week, I post the steps on how I took the photograph of my BMW die-cast toy car model. The result satisfied me, at that moment. But after I browse through images of cars on Flickr, I started to realize that my picture was good but lack of the 'wow' factor. So, this week's post will be about my journey to find the one that give me that 'wow' factor(OK, I know. Not that 'wow'. But hey, I'm still learning.*self defense*)

After browse through the images on Flickr, I realized that the white background is the weakest link from my previous photo. So, I want to remove the background and change it with black. I still love the reflection, so I will keep it. I even tried new technique, I used a snoot to limit the light so it won't spill to the background. And the journey began.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Playing with Toy Car

Today I would like to share my experiences of taking a picture of my toy car. After being inspired by David Hobby's blog, I have decided to start to learn on how to light my photographs. (If you're a loyal reader of David Hobby's blog, then you will know that I'm inspired by him just by reading the title of this blog). After struggling to find a good bargain on speedlite for me to use and learn, finally I've managed to borrow an old Nikon SB-20 of which now I can play around with. Well, enough with chit-chat and it's time to do the story telling part. Yippie.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Don't go and snap Pictures Instead Create them

I'd like to share my experiences and thoughts that I have when taking a photograph. Alright let me start by discussing on what elements would make a good photograph? Well I think there are 3 important elements in creating a good photograph. The three elements are composition, lighting, and lastly capturing the moment (or setting the mood).