Teen Photography Club

Faces I -- Simple Black and White Portraits

The December series of Teen Photography Club finished up with portrait practice and Cameron modeled for us for his 15 Minutes of Fame.  Everyone had a chance to set up and engage with our 'model'.  Here are the results from my camera...

Black and White portraits with the Teen Photography Club Grand Rapids Mi

Do you want to know how simple this set up can be?  Take a look.

a) It was a grey snowy day so I knew we needed to be rather close to the light source, which in this case was my large dining room windows.  

b) A simple background was going to be preferable to let the Face and Expressions  be the star. I was decorating for the holidays at the time so the room was a bit cluttered--I propped a framed Doctor Who poster (backwards) up on the piano bench and leaned it against the piano, it was something we had set in the hallway waiting for Freecycle.  I often have a large piece of white and black foam core handy for food styling shoots, but one of my kids had recently cut out a chunk of the black one for a school project so I improvised.

c) Since this was an exercise in metering, focusing AND engaging with a human I wanted the model AND the photographer to be stationary.  The subject got a wooden kitchen stool to sit on, photographers used a dining room chair.

d) 15 Minutes of Fame, the fun part.  We put music on, adjusted our exposure settings and focus and then-staying put-asked our subject questions, got him engaged in conversation, asked him to demonstrate different emotions until after a minute he was free to give us the best of his personality and expressions on his own.  Wham bam, done.  A few seconds in photoshop with a VSCO b/w preset and my own collage template and I suddenly had a christmas present sorted out and sent to the printers.

The behind-the-scenes simple set up: