In this post I wanted to share with you a recent project I did for the UK travelling dress project. This project was brought about by members of the conceptual portrait photography group on Facebook.
The dress had already been with a few other photographers prior to it landing on my doorstep. So the first port of call was to have the dress dry cleaned to freshen it up a bit but also to get rid of the creases. As for my concept I knew straight off that I wanted to use chrome. I wanted to include my love of the 60/70s and bring in some elements that I personally associate with sci-fi movies from that era.
So good old Amazon to the rescue! Within a few days of ordering I had my prop ready to go. I had already done a few test shots prior to working with my model. When using a reflective spherical object you need to be mindful of where you hold it. The shape lends itself to pull in and reflect objects found at its sides, top and bottom. I would stand right behind the ball in an effort to minimize how much of my own body might show up in the reflection.
If you've read my other posts you already know that I like to frequent Hadleigh Country Park for my projects. This time was no different and I feel it worked out beautifully because of the evening sunlight. Emily who was posing for me donned the travelling dress and we commenced our shoot. I had her strike a number of poses. To be honest we are both new at the model/photographer role. I've picked up a few tips along the way so verbally told Em what to do in relation to posing and holding herself. In one picture I wanted to ensure her eyes were looking at the right spot. I told her to imagine this object floating inches away from her hand. If I hadn't communicated this subtle, yet important piece of information, chances are her gaze would have been completely off. Not a deal breaker, but such attention to detail all helps back up that 'believability factor'.
This project was also my chance to bring in some noticeable movement in both hair and dress. So I had Emily flipping her head all over the shop and chucking the loose fabric of the dress in all directions. I then had enough shots to work with in the final composite.
In most of my shots I was quite lucky that we had a light breeze, more so in the last scene (sphere 3). It made the dress come alive! Once I got into post processing I quickly found that shooting everything at the same time at the same location made editing much...much... MUCH quicker. All my elements would just gel together. That said, I did spend ages colour correcting that purple dress! Why? I just didn't favour the colour! I also wanted to apply some colour theory by using complimentary colours. The background in two of the shots already had nice orange and brown tones going on. Looking at the colour wheel blues are the direct opposite of the orange/golden colours. Purple could come into that mix... but again... I didn't like the colour of the dress to begin with.
The chrome spheres where shot pretty much where I intended to put them in the final composite. It was important to do this so their reflections matched any distance/arrangement with their surroundings. A good example of this is in the sphere 3 image. Here we have a chrome ball floating at Em's waist, which is reflecting and matching the scene perfectly.