Hi everyone! Suggestions on how to shoot black on black?

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by Princess, Dec 1, 2006.

  1. Princess

    Princess TPF Noob!

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    Hi all! I am so glad that I have found this forum! I have been looking for something like this for months.... and just happened upon TPF on accident...

    Can anyone give me suggestions for shooting the black on black portraits? I have a black bkg, and have shot a few subjects wearing black, but it seems like I can never get it to all blend without some major photochopping!!

    Thanks, and I look forward to getting to know everyone! :flower:
     
  2. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Welcome to the forum.

    So do you want the subject's clothes to blend into the background...or do you want the clothes to stand out?
     
  3. Princess

    Princess TPF Noob!

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    Thanks!

    I want it to all blend. I dont want to be able to see where the clothes start, and background ends.
     
  4. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I'm thinking off the top of my head here...but to get both the clothes and BG to appear black...they would just need to be 3 stops (or so) darker than your exposure mid point. Depending on the latitude of your recording medium.

    To carry that out...you could...put more light onto the face than on the clothes ie: lights with snoots.
    Or make sure than the face is a lot more reflective that the clothes.

    As long as the contrast is sufficient...it shouldn't be too hard to finish it off quite easily with photoshop. Just select all the dark clothes and background and use levels (or whatever) to darken it right out.
     
  5. Princess

    Princess TPF Noob!

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    Awesome suggestions. Thanks Mike!!!!:sexywink: or should I say in a low voice.... "biiigggg miiiiiikkkkkkkeeee":greenpbl:
     
  6. nevilleb

    nevilleb TPF Noob!

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    Well, what you could do is use flash in a kinda creative way. What you'd need to do is mantain enough subject to background distance to ensure that the background is not illuminated by flash, while the foreground is. Essentially, meter off the background, and assign a DARK tone to it. Dial in say, -2 stops or more than that of EC on the camera. That will render the background as black sans any detail.

    Now, you'll need to use flash to illuminate the face of the subject.That, is your starting point.. take it from there! You'll need to read up on flash photography, of course.

    nevilleb
     
  7. Princess

    Princess TPF Noob!

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    Super suggestion.... Thanks so much!! I will try this for sure! Do you think that my on board flash will emit enough light to get a decent pic? (RebelXT)
     
  8. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    It could probably give you enough light...but because it's so close to the lens...it will look flat and boring.
     

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