Grid Girl Frostess
I think I have taken a few thousand pictures of Frostess over the last year, and she is also one of my favorite models out there. I got an opportunity to work with her doing a little bit of cosplay with a screaming hot car to go along with it. She had put on a partial silver spectre cosplay for the grid girl photo shoot and it worked out very well. The black and yellow worked with the vintage car helping set a great mood for the entire set. Frostess is over on Model Mayhem and her number is 2290334. The key to working with Frostess is that you have to work the images softly, her skin is really transparent, and so you really can’t get away with making the images harsh using Clarity (maybe a recommended setting of clarity 2, better at 10 to 20). The color balance with her is also interesting; you want to jack the whites while you are at it to get an awesome image.
These images were taken with a Nikon D5100, 18-105 portrait lens with a 62MM polarizer because of the over cast day. Also had a gold reflector aimed at her because of the overcast and how I wanted the yellows to pop in her cosplay. Overall the effect I was looking for worked here, I wanted something more dark and noir than the standard glamour shot.
And that is where it gets to be interesting, if you are working with a model, it always helps to try to discuss what you want to do at all times. Frostess and myself had talked about doing something cosplay for a while before this photo shoot so everything just clicked nicely when we got to this point in the group shoot with Femme Photo LTD. Otherwise, I hope these are helping you get better options with your photography, drop me a note, let me know what you think.
Grid Girl Roxy and a Vintage Charger
This is another grid girl via Femme LTD here in Seattle. This one was done earlier in the morning without using a reflector and just a polarizer on the lens. Processed in Lightroom 4.4 from Adobe with the standard HDR settings (highlights -100, shadows +100, white and black balance according to taste, and clarity +60).
I like the way that these settings helped bring out the reflection in the cars, in some of the pictures I dropped the color channels to highlight the burnt orange color of the car and the highlights in Roxy’s hair which matched out the color of the car fairly well. In others I took them as is right off the camera without any Lightroom trickery. Sometimes you can over do the Lightroom settings by adding too much clarity to the picture. That really depends on your model, what I have learned is that the darker the skin tone the more clarity you can add to a picture if HDR is your thing. For people with really pale skin, like a red head or someone who is very white, you really can’t use a lot of clarity because it brings out interesting bruising colors in their legs or a lot of veins that are time consuming to pull out using the healing brush in Photoshop. Tradeoffs are everywhere, you need to figure out what suits your artistic vision against what the manipulation looks like in Photoshop or Lightroom.
There are always problems with light shooting on an overcast day, so having a reflector is a good idea. I used the white side of the reflector for this one thinking that the gold side would impart too much color to the skin tones all the way through the process. My thinking looks like it was right in this instance with this model and the light conditions for the photo shooting time I had with her. Roxy is a pretty cool person to work with and she is a lot of fun in front of the camera. Overall I am pretty happy with how these all came out so as always looking for your opinion on the matter just to see if I was wrong or right with my assumptions and what I did post photo shoot with the images.
These pictures were shot using a Nikon D5100, a Nikor 18-105 lens with a 64MM Polarizer on the lens. I used a standard 42 inch reflector with the white side reflecting light onto the model. The light room settings were standard HDR settings (see above for the numbers) and pushed out at 300 DPI from the export.
Grid Girl Roxy and a Vintage Charger
Grid Girl Rebel
Nothing better than a vintage Charger and Rebel. Rebel is almost a Seattle institution in her own way, she runs her own modeling support group called Femme LTD, and she has some of the most fun photo shoots in the Seattle area. You rarely run into a dick photographer, and when you do, you can usually just confront them on the spot and they pretty much so shut up. Rebel is that important to the modeling photography scene, people tend to behave themselves when she is throwing a photo shoot. On average she does this about every 40 days, so if you are in Seattle, make sure to check out the group and see if you can get into the picture taking process.
These pictures were modified in light room 4.4, and used a lot of HDR settings to set these up, that means highlights off, shadows set to 100%, whites down to about 40% and blacks up to about 60% with the clarity setting up all the way to 100% to offset the race track and bring out the shadows in the car. I used a polarizer on the 18-105MM Nikor Lens to also help cut down on the variable lighting. And then finally used a gold reflector in the background to bring out what little sunlight I could bring out on the day. It was really overcast, so anything you could do to bring out a little more natural light was going to be a benefit to the photographer. I shot at 200 ASA, with aperture priority on a D5100. In all the more stuff you can do in the camera the less you have to do in post processing. I seriously thought about bringing in the Vibrancy settings in the camera, but after a couple of test shots the colors were far too overblown to get the mood that I was looking for out of this photo shoot.
All the pictures were taken at Evergreen Speedway.
I really went into this photo shoot looking to do something beyond the hot sexy model and a hot vintage car. I think I captured more of what I was looking for, adding an artistic and harsh flair to the whole process. Most of the modeling photography is so over done in Photoshop that you really don’t know what you are looking at, but you know it is not real. No Photoshop on this set, just the camera, and setting Lightroom to the standard HDR settings that you can use. There is a huge difference between going for glamour, and going for a more harsh realistic part of being a Grid Girl on the circuit. I think I captured what I was looking to do fairly well.