Working in a studio is not something I normally do when photographing people. Of course in my commercial photography I use lighting in a controlled environment but when I’m photographing people I prefer to work on location. Somehow a studio defines the style of photography whereas I prefer the subject’s reaction to the location to be a more open and intuitive process. Maybe this comes from my love of landscape photography or from my work in wedding photography where you are always reacting to the situation, the light and the people.
Not owning my own studio I am always looking at suitable venues for when the need arises and recently I came across a small studio in Belfast available for hire at reasonable rates. The best way of assessing the suitability of a studio is not to wander around it but to use. For that purpose I got in touch with a local model just to do a test shoot.
I didn’t want the traditional model look and I was trying to assess the variety of lighting and backgrounds to create a look so I aimed for a more direct, harder edge approach. I must say the studio was excellent with window light, white and grey/black backgrounds and excellent lighting equipment. I quite like the variety I got in one hour with contrejour, soft and hard shadow effects. To suit this I wanted a certain direct look from my subject and I got it. And of course a big thank you to Isa – the patient model for the day.
What do you think?