I was back in Shanghai and had brunch with Gustavo over the weekend. He asked me if I can help him with a shoot, mainly for professional head shots as well as some family group shots. I said no problems and one day after work, I head over to his place with my gears.
My backdrops were all in Hong Kong and I opted for bedsheets as background. I took my Canon 5D3 along with my 24-105mm F4 L lens, yongnuo YN-568 and YN-500 flashes and RF-622 remotes. I setup two lights, one main directional light from the left and a second light from the right to take out some of the shadows and as a weak fill. I intended to bring my Mamiya Universal along but my camera bag was simply full, maybe next time.
It was a two hour sitting and some great shots came out of it. My two favorites shots are shown below. These two shots were super loto and reminded me of the Daguerreotype photos and some old post cards that I have seen before.
In my last post, I wrote about the change of my travel gear. Recently I had an upgrade of my digital equipment as I had an important shoot. I did some research and finally settled on the Canon 5D Mark III. It was really between that and the Nikon D800 which my brother had been persuading me to get. Both machines are great and will be sufficient for me. It came down to lenses. Nikon did not make a pancake lens. Canon on the other hand made an excellent low costing yet high performance 40mm f2.8 lens. I wanted the new camera to be also used as an everyday camera and even a 50mm f1.8 lens on either of these cameras is proven bigger than what I wanted to bring to happy hour. I really loved my Canon QL17 which is also 40mm and it didn’t take much for me to steer onto that direction.
I also decided to get the stock 24-105mm f4 IS L lens which is an excellent lens for the money you paid when you purchase together with the 5D3. I figured, most of the photos that I will use this lens for involves architecture (infinity focus anyway) and group shots (more than 2 people so I would be using f5.6+ anyway). For detail bokeh work, I can use my 40mm f2.8 for now and get another prime after (say 50mm f1.4). One lens that I considered was the ever so popular 24-70mm f2.8. It was a lot of money for that piece of glass and I don’t see a lot of usage for it at this moment.
My first shoot was a big family birthday dinner and overall the shoot was successful. While tuning the photos after the shoot, I noticed my LCD screen’s color was way off. I took the dive and got the Datacolor Spyder. After calibration, the prints matched quite well with what I see on the screen now.
The second job was a lotophoto family shoot, which is what I love to do. The Yongnuo YN568 ETTL worked amazingly well with the 5d3, especially as a fill flash for the gloomy outdoor shoot. Indoors, I setup two Yongnuo YN560II flashes on remote triggers.
I really love this shot with Cailee, it’s such a lotophoto. In the old days without cell phones and digital cameras, parents will always take their children to a local photo studio to have these photos taken.
The first two sessions were a blast and I have to say that the Canon 5d3 worked as it promised. No wonder why this is one of the most preferred work horses for the digital photography world today.