Gritty Black and White Portraits – Capture One: OnSet ep. 230

Hey this is Daniel Norton.. I’m here in my studio in New York City with Paulina and I’m playing around a little bit with the idea of kind of… getting this like… kind of imperfect black and white. I was looking at a lot of kind of older shots that we’re done on like Polaroid and like 8 x 10 Polaroid especially… and they said this really unique kind of feel to them, they’re kind of not perfect… they’re kind of overly contrasted, they don’t have all the details necessary but there’s a certain Beauty to that right? So we wanted to create a similar kind of shot using you know modern tools, so I have my Fuji GFX, and we’re going to shoot some… so I’m lighting this really simply – we have some daylight coming in.. although we’re mostly overpowering it because I’m using a 400 watt HMI light which is a daylight balanced hot light, it’s from data light… it’s got the just like all the other lights it has the spherical lens on the front, so it creates a really beautiful light on the skin, makes it nice and even, and we’re gonna get nice hard shadows, and kind of showcase Paulina’s beauty, so here we go. So I walk 18 miles back to the thing.. so I’m using the 110mm lens on here because I want to have a minimal depth of field.. because I’m going for this kind of old look of like… need a large format so I wanted a little that the field as possible… So I put the long lens on here… we’re with the – with the f/2 aperture, and what’s nice about this is… I’m just looking through it, you know it’s mirrorless… so bring the frames like this a little bit… and I’m just gonna adjust my camera… up and down… until I get an exposure I think looks good… I want to lock in f/2. I’m basically going to work with my shutter speed and my ISO… my ISO is actually 50… I shall go ISO100 and I’m gonna go 1/250th second… and let’s see, We take a two-shot. So that’s kind of step one… I have the B & W profile on this already which.. looks pretty neat, but it looks really really clean right… that’s kind of the point right…we want all detail you know? Us modern… you know… shooters… but I want to kind of mess it up a little bit, and what I’m gonna do is…. I’m in Capture One …. I’m just gonna do it the most simple way.. which is basically messing around the levels… so there’s a lot of different ways you can do this, what I like to do is bring my exposure up a smidge like that, and then I’m gonna grab my shadows, and then people who love histograms are gonna hate this… so I’m gonna pull my shadows over… see I’m adding contrast, there, it’s also pushing my mid-tones, pulling some of my mid-tones back… and see what that looks good. This is you can notice with the mid-tones… here, I’m almost vignetting.. because you’re starting to pull those like tones there… so that mimics the vignette that you get with some of that older film… so I’ve got some of that going, and then I’m gonna grab my lights and pull those in to kind of add more contrast there… now there’s all kinds of stuff you can do with fake grain and things like that… but I’m not gonna do that now.. or nor do I generally.. So now that I’ve done that… I’m gonna play out my explosion.. yeah a bit dull… I’m going to make it a little bit dull… I feel like having a little bit of a dark exposure.. it almost makes more sense, and that looks pretty good now. The one thing I’m not gonna to be able to mimic really easily is that a lot of times there is a little bit of blur to these old photos, because of the fact that you know, when you’re shooting with large format camera, you know you’re shooting it like f/11, f/16 to get up the field I’m getting with f/2 here, so, so you’d have to do a really slow shutter… so I’m going to do the… – even though I’m at 250… I’m gonna actually shake the camera as I shoot, and see if I can get a little bit of… probably not gonna do much, but if it adds just a little softness to it we’re just gonna do that. Don’t want a lot of focus softness.. I want to just kind of get like a little bit of something… so let’s see, yeah, yeah, we got that a little bit of blur you know… and each one is gonna be just a tiny tiny bit different, because I’m doing it manually versus adding some filter to it in post. So it really does give that kind of fun feel to it…. I’m just looking at my vignette to see if I like it… I feel like I want that a little bit.. going to open the barn doors a tiny bit, see if I can change up that vignette a
tiny bit. The thing about doing it this way is… when I’m working with the client right, I can actually…. that’s beautiful… there you go… oh that’s it, that’s it… I’m getting it here in post right… right away… I’m sure in Capture One … even though I’m doing kind of quick post work to it… I’m doing it during the shoot… so basically we can go out you know, and have dinner after the end of the shoot and not look forward to spending hours in front of a computer…. and also they know if they like it, you know now just to be safe I’m gonna shoot some that aren’t shaky… good, good, good. Hold… bring it up a smidge, good, nice like that, beautiful… Wow! yeah that’s really nice, that looks fantastic, so there you go.. no shake, and nose.. see how sharp that is.. and just a tiny bit of shake.. see the difference… I like this one… yes …there’s only one with a little bit of shake… I’ll come down to the bottom here, and I’ll choose let’s say the last one that we do… well we can see the difference, crispy, sharp… but with some shake… so you know it has that kind of feel to it, and if you want to add grain and stuff like that you could do that too, but again that’s not really my style. Let’s just do a couple more… now the other thing I’m gonna do is, I gone higher because I want to get more of that corner in the shot….I think I want to get a little lower… you know… perspective, slightly… I’m using the back of the camera to see it too… so it makes it really easy to get low without killing myself… beautiful, check my focus point nice… like that, yeah, very nice… besides a different angle.. you know once you’ve got the shot, it’s always good to just play around a little bit… good, good, good… now if I wasn’t in such a bright studio… let’s say you’re in your home or something, and it’s not so bright, you could just use a less powerful light… much slower shutter speed as well to get the blur… because naturally your models gonna move a little bit without having to shake the camera… that’s just what I have to do here, because I’m in my space, this is great… love it, love it, all right just because I can… I’m gonna run forward… and shoot one quick shot on your face, chin up… a little bit right there… I actually… beautiful, good, last one… and we did one close, with the shake Okay everybody who loves super sharp pictures is complaining right now… I can tell about how I shook the camera like a maniac… So I’m gonna come running forward… okay so, like being on the ground this is kind of like what we started… this where we end, right hanging out we’re chilling out so… yeah so get inspiration… I always say this buy other photos… like things that you’ve seen in the past or card photographers that you like, but then make it your own, change it up a little bit… use the tools that you have, you don’t have to be like oh they used exactly this tool, and that’s what they did.. Just think about why they use it… or what it looks like, and how that can work, and create it with what you got. So anyways… I’ll put up all Paulina’s information in the description… you guys can follow her. Be sure to follow me… @DanielNortonPhotographer make sure you subscribe to Adoramatv and ring the bell and I’ll see you next time OnSet.

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