26 Week Maternity Test Photoshoot!

I figured I’d try my hand at a maternity photoshoot. I haven’t shot cars for the longest time it seems and I thought that instead of letting my camera collect dust, I’d go take pictures of Diana. LOL!
I’m not a huge people photographer, but I can stumble my way around it if I need to. The thing with shooting people is timing is everything. If you’re a millisecond off, you could capture the worst expression they’ve ever made or you could capture the best moment they’ll ever see. The other thing with maternity shoots – and I speak based off my own opinion – is that you want to make sure the pictures capture all the right angles, it doesn’t make them look unflattering and that it focuses on mom and baby. Easier said than done…

Anyway, we took a short drive to a nearby park and I practiced. It’s still pretty early for an official maternity shoot but I want to make sure I know what I’m doing before I do the official one. Learning what angles to use and what poses Diana needs to be in = critical… Or else I’ll have an unhappy pregnant wife with not so good pictures LOL.

I really wanted to focus this practice shoot on learning the Brenizer Method because I think this would amazingly compliment a maternity shoot. You don’t see it too often because it’s difficult to do, but boy oh boy, when you nail it, it creates an amazing photo. I did a few a couple years ago and it’s amazing when you get it right. Maybe only photographers get excited about things like this, but it definitely creates an effect that no single shot can create – no matter how good your gear is.

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Starting off slow… I liked this shot.

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Her dress and the background work well. I like shooting colours – including cars – so this pops nice. No pun intended…

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We found this nice big tree. Simple.

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One more from the 135mm…

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Here’s one of many attempts at trying the Brenizer Method. From this 45 minute shoot, I took 433 photos and as you can see, I ended up with a handful. Part of the reason is that creating a photo using the Brenizer method requires multiple images all stitched together. Each photo overlapping the last one by at least 1/3. Half the magic comes from the user having a steady hand and taking pictures using an imaginary line, the other half comes from Photoshop being able to stitch all of them together without any holes or distortions.

The beauty of the Brenizer Method is the fact that you are able to take a wide-looking photo with a prime lens with a very shallow depth of field. No lens like that exists. You get one or the other – a very shallow depth of field and a small field of vision or a very wide photo with little bokeh effect.

The photo above is kind of a bad example – learning from my mistakes – the Brenizer Method shines when you have shallow depth of field. Looking down like I did above is not the best way to get bokeh, so it’s difficult to see. I did like this photo though because it creates the illusion of a panoramic photo, but does little in terms of illustrating what the Brenizer Method can do.

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A slightly better example, but still far from perfect. You can see the shallow depth of field all behind Diana and in the tree leaves, but there’s a lot of shadows and highlights going on in the picture causing it to look like there were spot lights everywhere. A mismatch of scenery, user error, and software misinterpretation of lighting across the 30 images used to create this.

I’m determined to get this right if it’s the last thing I do! I apologize for the lack of any car related stuff lately – I barely have time to wash my own car, let along take pictures of it or any one elses!

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