I decided to challenge myself and decided that there was no bigger task than to do a “selfie”. It is an exercise that helps you to learn the timer or, in my case, the remote trigger on my camera. Now, most photographers will agree that we hate being in front of the lens. That’s why we’re photographers and not models! The idea of putting myself in front of the lens was daunting.
So for my “selfie”, I decided to go all in and try to put aside my own insecurities for the sake of learning more about my camera and a shooting technique that I had read about. See the article here. It’s a great technique if you are shooting in your home or an area where the background is undesirable or you just want to create a mood. I love low-key images and the dark or dramatic vibe they give. So, I set up my ‘studio’ right in my living room where there is lots of ambient light.
I set up my camera on a tripod and attached both my Vello Wireless Shutterboss and PocketWizard. I set up my Nikon speedlight with an umbrella ‘closed down’. I didn’t want the light from the flash to hit anything other than myself. You can manipulate where the light falls by changing the power of the speedlight, how much the umbrella is opened and you don’t even need an umbrella! I also set up a reflector to bounce some of the light back onto me.
I shot in Manual mode and set my camera at ISO 50, SS 1/250, and a good starting point for the aperture is f/5.6 but I ended up at f/13. So basically for you camera set it to the lowest ISO and set your shutter speed to the maximum flash sync speed. Then adjust your aperture to get the desired effect.
So, there it is! I really learned a lot about my settings and shooting low-key.
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