June 03, 2013

How I did it. Outdoor black and white Fashion shooting

When we were preparing this fashion shooting, there was one thing my Art Director, Gemma, and I had clear in mind: contrast. So we decided to develop the entire shooting around it. Models, locations, dresses, attitude... everything should reveal the idea of contrast. Once again I chose a Medium Format analogue camera because, apart from being my favourite photographic format, it was the perfect combination with the idea we developed.

Tmaxx 400, ƒ11 t1/125

Two elegant ladies in the countryside, in a filthy and decaying place far from the town where they can freely love themselves in a less platonic way. It's around 1920, as the hair style suggests; the ladies could be an aristocratic woman and her servant... This is, briefly, the story we told trough the shooting. I wanted the images to remind the feel of that time, that's way I shot analogue and that's why I used black and white film.

I chose the film I am most comfortable with, Tmax 400 and a 80mm lens on a medium format camera to respect the naturalism of the whole idea. I used just two lights for the shooting; well, actually three lights if we count the light of the overcast day we had which played as ambient light.

The key light was positioned behind the models, at camera right: it was a naked flash so the light would have scattered all over the place imitating the sun. In front of the models, on camera left, I placed the fill light: a huge octagonal softbox 150cm wide which provided soft and diffused light wrapping the models and able to illuminate both of them. I placed it on one side because the shadows it produced on the blonde model's face were very suitable for her physiognomy.

I used a Y8 filter to whiten the blond model's skin and to accentuate the contrast of the scene. Even if I love grain, this time I controlled the agitation during the negative development because I looked for the fine grain the Tmax offers and played with the time of the process to enhance the contrast.

You can see the whole shooting in my web or in Stravagance Magazine.

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