Hey man, I'm a huge fan of your long legs. In other news, you might wish to consider adding a /br/ or two to the top of your page, as posts sit very high when viewed on the page - especially relevant to text posts. Buenos nochés
Hey man, I'm a huge fan of your photography and your lighting set up break downs, as well as videos have helped me immensely. I was just wondering if you only shoot with the d7000? If you do have you considered moving to full-frame, or do you prefer cropped? Take it easy :)
Thanks so much dude, really kind of you! It’s great to have some feedback on the posts/videos because I’ve neglected this blog due to the underwhelming response haha. Yep I only shoot a d7000 at the moment. I’m definitely considering an upgrade in the future, but at the moment it does everyone I need it to do so I can’t complain :)
I’ve started work on two new photography videos. Hoping to have them done by the end of the week. Not sure if people read this but does anyone have a request for something they want to see in a future video? Anything questions or want something I do explained?
I use the fisheye when the sky is still bright because I know it holds the detail really well which is important to me.
I’m the first to admit that I’m no expert. However, I’ve been doing this for a while now and I know what works for me and what doesn’t. When posing a group of people I like to do it in layers. 5 people standing in a row, to me doesn’t make a strong image. The angles and the depth of the band is very important to my personal image style.
While it’s easy to arrange a bunch of people in a symmetrical way, my favourite band promos are the ones that have less formal structure. I like to create different sections in my poses and will usually stand people in groups of 2-3. In my opinion this is easier with larger bands of 5-6 people although it does make it more difficult to light.
This sort of photo with four band members is a pretty typical shoot. This first location, I treated Lan (lead vocalist and guitarist) as his own group and the rest of the band as another. From my understanding, Lan is the main songwriter and the “face” of the band and I think that comes across here. The others were arranged in a way that the light would hit their faces and organised in terms of height.
When directing people I’m not always clear with my words so I will usually show them with my body which way to stand. In stead of saying “turn towards me” I try to use phrases like “move your right should back” or “look over your left shoulder”. I tend to find demonstrating to by doing the post yourself is usually the best way to start then you can talk them through any adjustments once you look through the lens.
Another thing that I’ve found in earlier shoots is that making constant conversation with your subjects is very important UNTIL it comes time to make pictures. When the time comes to get it done I’ll say to my bands something along the lines of “okay guys, I’m going to take 15 shots in a row and I’ll count you down in between”. A lot of photographers would say not to do this but I find it works best to make them concentrate for 4 or 5 minutes at a time. That way they can talk or adjust their hair or scratch an itch but be ready for when the shutter clicks. When they hear me start to count it, they immediately focus and get into photo mode. It has GREATLY improved the number of usable final images I come away with because when people are talking their mouths often look ridiculous and this greatly takes away from the image. Not to mention it has hugely reduced the amount of images ruined by someone blinking!
If I want them to laugh or smile for a particularly photo I my best not tell them to smile but instead to say something funny (often at my own expense) and be ready with the shutter to take a few clicks of their reaction. (See video for example)
That’s about it for this one, any photography or gear questions please hit that ask button!
0. Raw Adjustments in Lightroom (Can also use CameraRaw).
- From here open image in photoshop
2. Tighten Up Contrast
3. Dodge & Burn
4. Selective Sharpen
Nikon d7000 body w/10.5mm fisheye lens.
I don’t usually shoot promo with a fisheye but the day was still pretty bright and I know that particular lens holds the sky better which is important for me. Corrections are not perfect but it’s a quick fix in lightroom to get it looking reasonable.
Sb600 flash off camera in front, through an umbrella.
Your photos are great man, especially your outdoor lighting setups - incredible! Dig your live band shots a lot as well. Are you using a 'reputable' brand for all your lighting gear? I have cheap Chinese stands etc and am thinking it's time to get something semi decent, but as with everything to do with photography it is not cheap.
Dude, thankyou so much. I’m a big fan of your work! Every time I see one of your photos in my newsfeed, I instantly know it’s a Nathan Doran pic. I have a bunch of questions I’d love to ask about how you shoot also.
My lighting rig at the moment is pretty small, I have 2 speedlights and a handful of modifiers. My umbrellas/softboxes are cheap ones from overseas. I don’t see the point in spending heaps on something that will break the first time it falls over. They do the job.
It’s pretty important to spend some money on good stands, however a couple of sandbags and some gravel from bunnings goes a long way. I have some really good ones and some cheap ones too, both have their place.
My big heavy light stands are my favourite obviously, but it’s also really handy to be able to fit everything I need into my carry on luggage for travelling!
What gear do you generally bring on a promo shoot? i.e. what glass and light modifiers?
Usually I shoot with either a 35mm 1.8 or 11-16 2.8. Shooting wide is a lot easier but the images have a really different look so it depends what you like. I’ve shot promos on an 85mm and also a 10.5mm fish so it just depends on what you have at the time and the way you position your lights.
In terms of light modifiers I have my trusty shoot-through umbrella which I tend to use for bigger bands of 5-7 people or an octobox for smaller groups of 3-4. It depends on the situation though.
My lighting rig is small, only two speedlights but it’s super portable and that’s all I really need at the moment.