Got together with a fun Mother and Daughter team over the weekend for a Senior Portraits photoshoot for Lauren.
We originally had planned to do it on Saturday, but of course, the weather didn’t cooperate thanks to the rain.
The Photoshoot took place at their friend’s house in Mclean, VA where they had a massive 6 acre estate with similarly massive gardens (plural – more than one). The weather was slightly cloudy so it wasn’t too hot or bright out, but it was definitely a bit humid. Heat and humidity weather will always be challenge for any outdoor activity, especially for photography. The biggest challenge of taking great pictures is to patient with your external surroundings (hot/cold weather, traffic, people, etc).
The Mom, Lynn, was energetic and excited to get shit done. The model, Lauren, didn’t look as enthused but that changed after a couple of photos. We were pretty much all laughing and having a great time. I was fortunate to have a fun team to work with because having fun is half of the photography experience in my opinion.
I had Lynn take care of the reflector work on top of doing other “motherly” things like fixing Lauren’s hair, straightening out her dress, etc. You know…the touch ups.
With that, below are some of my favorites from the day:
I was double-fisting both the Sony full-frame and the Olympus Micro Four-Thirds bodies, both serving different purposes. With the Sony, I mated the body with the Zeiss 55 for those personal up-close photos while the little Olympus and the 75mm combo was used for that “compression” look with the subject further away.
The legendary Zeiss 55 is probably one of the sharpest lenses ever made. With a camera with a good megapixel sensor (24MP in my case), I could take a photo 50 feet away from the subject, crop it, and it still look as sharp as if I took the photo 15 feet away (photo above).
The above photo is definitely one of my favorites due to the composition and the good lighting we were able to achieve (thanks to Lynn’s awesome reflector holding skills on the right of the frame). This also shows off the Zeiss “pop” that the company is known for.
Gotta love Olympus’ color rendering, which I prefer over the big boy Sony, even in RAW. I was also really impressed with how much dynamic range I had to play with on the 20 MP sensor on the PEN-F.
However, the photos from Micro Four-Thirds sensors will look “darker” compared to a bigger sensor like the full-frame Sony because it’s just not gathering as much light. This is where you can’t fight physics, despite how far technology had progressed. You can compensate for this by cranking down the shutter speed (and let the 5 Axis IBIS help you out) and slightly increasing the exposure by turning the exposure dial.
If you look at the photos and their exposure settings, you can see that the photos taken with the Olympus consistently had a higher ISO than the Sony in similar outdoor environments.
This is a perfect example of having that background compression you can only get with a telephoto lens, in this case, a fast prime. The 75mm on a Micro Four-Thirds give you that 150mm equivalent look on a Full-Frame camera. The lens was magical and you can see the subject “pop” from the environment.
I might fanboy over the Olympus 75mm, but the legendary Zeiss 55 still reigns king.
The 55mm paired with the Sony’s fantastic Facial Recognition focus, I was able to nail the focus with their faces, even with the aperture wide open.
This was a fantastic experience and I want to thank both Lynn and Lauren for being a lot of fun to work with.
Flickr (High Res): Lauren’s Senior Photos