Congratulations to the Class of 2010. It is one of the worst times to graduate, with all the uncertainty that is rampant in the world today. But hey, going through college is not one of the easiest things to do. So give yourself a break and celebrate, at least, that is what we did.
Graduation and Commencement ceremonies were a couple of weeks back, but all of us were busy with our own stuff so we could only schedule a photo shoot last Friday evening. Luckily for me, my lens got fixed on time ( why it was not serviceable is another story for another day.)
Camera: Nikon D200,
Lenses: Nikkors 50mm f1.4, 18-200 f3.5-5.4 VR and 135 f2 DC
Lighting: Nikon SB-800, Westcott Apollo 28″ Softbox and of course a lightstand.
Unlike the portraits I did for my friends during my undergraduate studies, I did not want to portray each of them in a manner which is specific to them. I thought that since it is a post graduate portrait, I would focus on the “professional” side of things – portraying them in the light of their achievement and the success that would come along, instead of focusing on individuality per se.
From Top (L-R): David Vera, Charlene Chen, Ooi Boon Han, Ronny Leong, Cheryl Chee and Michelle.
Flash in manual mode at full power (although it was 6pm, the sun was well,still up).
Had my first go at High Sync Shutter speeds, will blog more about that when I have tested it further. You can see that the flash has practically died by the time I reached Michelle.
I planned to take another set of individual portraits but the shitty old AA batteries failed me. If anyone wants to sponsor me new NiZn rechargeable batteries, please do so! AND! another note to my friends who intend to purchase the Westcott Apollo – make sure you have weights on your lightstand! Zack Arias did mention in his One Light DVD that its suppose to be better than having an umbrella. But honestly IT IS NOT. Mine took a hard fall when the winds picked up, leaving a nasty bend on one of the arms. Luckily, I managed to salvage it without any further damage (cross fingers). Flash was extremely well protected, so no damage. Should have taken pictures of the damaged soft box, but didn’t think of it at the time. Get weights!
Anyway, just an idea of how the light was set up:
Notice the human rigs? The lovely pair Michelle and Charlene? Then, notice the dashingly handsome guy in the suit standing around smiling? haha… Moving on.
First up, Andy and Charlene.
I have know this two for the longest time. They were my seniors in NPCC and now, my seniors at Columbia. I’m extremely thankful for them, since they were among the first Singaporeans to show us around NYC and have provided a huge source of chat, laughter and wonderful friendship.
Flash is above camera, with a reflector just both of them. If you look carefully, you can see Andy holding the reflector 😀
Cheryl and Michelle.
Whats with me and SCGS girls. Its a happy curse thing I swear. Two generations of SC girls in this photo. Both extremely sweet. I am in love in one, and in total admiration for the other.
This was shot in natural light with the 135mm DC at f3.5 I think. I had troubles with this lens because of its extremely HUGE aperture which has a razor thin plane of focus. This is one of the first shots that I would consider decent coming from this lens. I have learned something new over the weekend, shall try it out before I write about it. But a little heads up, its about getting the best, most in focus shots with a fast lens.
Michelle and the Beast
What else needs to be said? 😀 Michelle looks scared.
Finally, a group shot, once again, by the magnificent 135mm DC. I was practically a football field away taking this shot.
Shot in natural light, should have done better with the cropping.
As a bonus, two more portraits done with the 135mm DC, just to show of its ridiculous bokeh and DOF.