It's no secret I absolutely love off-camera flash (OCF) , especially in an outdoor setting. When I did family portraits under Carrow & Colasurdo, I knew OCF would be key to use, especially since we would be shooting right at sunset.
Since we were shooting right at sunset and the sun was going down fast, I had to keep it simple and make the quick decisions. I had my whole kit with me, but it doesn't get much more simpler than a 50mm and a single flash. Listed below is the gear I used for the shot.
- Canon 5d3
- Sigma 50mm f/1.4 Art
- Canon 600EX-RT Speedlite
- Canon ST-E3-RT Transmitter
- Westcott 60in Bounce Umbrella w/ Silver Lining
I'm a huge fan of shallow depth of field (DOF) and when using flashes or studio strobes, this can be achieved a couple different ways. The way I go about it is by using High Speed Sync (HSS) which the Canon 600EX-RT Speedlite is capable of doing. Another way of going about doing this is using Neutral Density filters, but that's a story for another time. The way HSS works is allowing the camera to shoot at a higher sync ( shutter ) speed than what would normally be allowed, not all flashes / strobes have this feature. Being able to use HSS allows you to shoot at a faster F with a faster shutter speed without blowing out your highlights. Listed below are the camera & flash settings I used, as well as the positioning of the light to the subject.
- Shutter Speed - 1/800sec
- Aperture - f/1.6
- ISO - 320
- Zoom - 24mm
- Power - 1/16th
- 45* angle, 6ft High, 4ft from Subject
As far as positioning goes, I really didn't do too much! The baby wasn't enjoying being outside all too much and it was pretty chilly. Chris was holding his son trying to keep him warm and calm him down at the same time, however the way it look made for a picture perfect moment. All I said to Chris was "Just keep doing what you're doing right now." I moved my light into the position as it is above and was able to nail the image on the first shot. I couldn't be more happier on how it came out.
So, there you have it, the break down of one of my favorite portrait shots I've taken to date! If you want to see more photos from this session, they are posted on the Carrow & Colasurdo blog here.
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