We’re well into the spring season now so I think it’s about time I shared some blossomy portraits from a shoot I did with Becky a few weeks ago (obviously we have to make the most of nature when it provides us with a beautiful palette of floral backgrounds). We spent a couple of hours shooting on location to see what we could create, and I have selected a few of my finished favourites to show you.
I have edited the colours, tones and done some very subtle retouching but I prefer to keep the finish as natural as possible for portraits so I haven’t fiddled too much. I won’t write loads about them (for fear of sounding like my visual diary from uni assignments) but for those of you who may be interested, these were all captured using the Canon 5Dmiii and 85mm f/1.8 lens. This is by far the dreamiest and most glowy lens I have ever used, and if you’re into portraits or shoot a lot of weddings I would definitely recommend it – I must use it for 80% of my photos now! I shoot everything in raw and edit in Lightroom, sometimes coming out to Photoshop to make extra tweaks. If I’m properly going for it with the retouching (for fashion/studio work etc), then I do all of that in Photoshop as it is much more flexible when it comes to retouching.
I get asked quite often for editing advice, or if I can post a “how I edit my photos” video. I did once film a tutorial but found it difficult to explain what I was doing, as I don’t follow specific rules when it comes to editing. What I change all depends on the location, lighting, colours, and the mood of the shoot. Generally I love soft, muted colours, for example in the first image up there I’ve used HSL sliders to alter the colour of the flowers from bright yellow to a soft orange to compliment the model’s eyes. I use the tone curve a lot to target specific areas of the image, usually pulling the highlights down and pushing the blacks up a little to create this soft effect, then using the middle of the curve to get the skin tones looking lovely. If I’m editing on my phone I use Afterlight, although I love Lightroom so much that I tend to import photos from my phone and edit them alongside the raw images from my camera. I also like to do this because it means I can organise them all properly before I export them, and I do love to have nice organised photos.
I also find that it makes the editing a lot more pleasing if you position the subject between the lens and the sun, so that you get the lovely rim lighting (the glowy-ness around her hair), making it look warm and sunny without having the light shining directly into her eyes and making her all squinty. If you have an assistant who can follow you around with a reflector (one of those giant discs that looks slightly like a part from a spaceship) then they are great for bouncing some of the light back on to the model’s face and filling in any unwanted shadows.
As you can see, Becky was a dream to photograph and it was lovely to work creatively alongside someone I grew up with – hopefully we can do some more when I am back in the UK. If you’d like to find out more about what she is up to at the moment, you can head over to her Twitter or YouTube pages, and if you’d like to find out more about booking a portrait shoot with me then just drop me an email and we can have a chat.
I’m back off to my editing now – wedding season has started and we are all very busy over here! Hoping to get some new posts up over the coming weeks, and will definitely be posting to Instagram over the summer so be sure to check that out to keep updated on what I’m up to.
Hope you have a nice weekend!
Love Marie x