Artist Pat Corbin Chao–works on her landscape of the fishing pier at Lake Evans. I used just a reflector to direct the light down towards the palette and her canvas. See this picture from my student Erika Garcia taken from the reverse angle.
Our 2nd artist Pat Corbin Chao set up to work closer to the lake but still within our immediate vicinity.
At this time of the day, about 7 pm, the sun was almost below the horizon.
But there was still a lot of light because of the mirror-like quality from the water of Lake Evans.
#1 A High Viewpoint–Not necessarily the best viewpoint, but it does take away the distractions in the parking lot. Using the ground for my background from this angle is an option.
#2 The other angle–Standing up and shooting at normal eye level you can see how the wide angle lens introduces a lot of the scene especially on the right . Distractions like the white rock and the people on the right are creeping in. They are hard to ignore because they are lit and so their tones are lighter. Anything lighter than Pat’s face especially at the edges draws the viewer’s eye from Pat, my subject.
#3 Closing in–Again, as in the case of Sharon’s picture, I moved in closer to make Pat more prominent and effectively cropping out the distraction of the people and the rocks on the right. Take a look at what my student Kathrine Johnson saw from the reverse angle.
#4 A Minor Adjustment–After I got a student to hold a reflector to bring back the detail in the Pat’s artwork, I still noticed an unsightly gap in my composition. It’s no different from shooting a still life in a way. Since this is a portrait, I get to take control and arrange the various elements. Looking at the dead space. I had Pat move the palette so that it filled the void. Compare it to the final image.
Happy Mother’s Day to all you ladies reading this.
My favorite quote that has the word mother in it is:
He Who Doesn’t Travel Thinks His Mother is the Only Cook
A final note about portraiture. I can’t emphasize enough the need to establish a rapport with your subject. Obviously I didn’t shoot a lot because this was a demonstration.
I always find it very difficult to give my undivided attention, which is what’s needed, to my subject when I’m teaching.
There’s always room for improvement. When you say there is none, then you’re deluding yourself. Exactly what would I work on once I got the framing and composition of Sharon and Pat?
I would spend more time talking with them to get as pleasant an expression or smile that I can out of them.