August 21, 2005

Miles & Natasha Tother Indoors (and snakes)

The second day of Miles and Natasha's visit to Moncton was split between working with them in the morning and two other models in the afternoon. The morning session was indoors for several reasons; first, I wanted to concentrate on couple images, and an indoor setting was easier for this, and second, Miles wished to spend some time modeling with a pair of corn snakes that recently moved in. I hadn't worked with the snakes and a model yet, but Miles was quite interested in the possibilities, so without really knowing what would happen, we made the plans for the session, and crossed out fingers.
Digital infrared original, 4 frame stitch
The beginning of the session was spent photographing Miles and Natasha cuddling, working with white sheets covering the window and futon, and focusing the compositions on the two models. The light was perfect, with the sheet-covered window behind them providing some rim lighting, and the other window to the left giving the main lighting.

We started out with prone poses, both models lying on the couch and embracing, but eventually shifted to sitting and kneeling poses; the variations of pose and composition possible when both models are lying down is somewhat limited. The best of the kneeling poses were of Miles embracing Natasha from behind, their knees formed a solid base for the image to sit upon.
Digital infrared original
When we shifted to working with the snakes, I immediately made some changes to my photographic approach. I changed from the infrared modified DSLR to the regular colour DSLR camera, and boosted the ISO from 200 (the minimum for the Nikon D70) to 400, which gave me a little higher shutter-speed to work with. The snakes sometimes move amazingly fast and I wanted to be able to stop their motion as much as possible.
Digital original
As it turned out, it wasn't the snake's motion that caused an issue, but the low light level's influence on the camera's autofocus system. Several times over the session I had the perfect composition and snake position, but the camera took too long to find the focus, and the snakes moved.

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