Very New To Photography & I Need Help With This Picture For My Art Class


TPF Noob!
Jan 11, 2012
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Ok guys, I got a pretty nice camera for Christmas and I've been playing around with it since then. I have a piece due for my art class due this upcoming week, and I have an idea for it. However, I'm not sure on how to get the picture to come out how I want it. I'm taking a portrait of my friend before he leaves this weekend to head back to college. He was a big influence on me growing up, and I want to take a picture of him similar to this album cover:


I want my friend to appear to be very dark with a lighter white/greyish background. I'm just not sure on what I should do with lighting or whatever. Can anyone help me out?
Since it's for your art class you should be thinking about what the picture is trying to express. Or rather, what are you trying to express through this photo? Did you take the photo first and then decide to use it? With work like this it's best to plan what you want to say, and then use the camera to create your expression. It's hard to critique you on this when we have no idea what you are trying to do with it.

If you're talking about simply recreating the photo above, then it isn't too hard. Take a head shot with the same composition. Keep the lighting natural. It's hard to say if there was a flash used, or if it was artificial ceiling light...actually. Before I go any further, what are you photoshop skills? That's important to know before I continue.
My photoshop skills are pretty nonexistent. But, I do plan on learning.
You still havent really explained what you want to do. What is your art class assignment?? So you want your freind in a mask on a whitish-grey background similar to the above...for an art class. To me it looks like it was taken outside since it looks to have trees in the reflection, the background looks to be an overcast sky, taken pretty much straight on, no flash.
This has a gladiator feel towards it.

Strong, dark, mysterious... atleast that's what i get from it
I'm kind of trying to recreate the picture like GnipGnop said. (Minus the mask.) I want my friend to be very dark, but with a lighter greyish-white background. The assignment is anything I want. We can choose whatever. It's just a basic high school art class.
You could underexpose the image at a low ISO, and then try to Dodge the spots that you want lighter.

Or you could take a normal/overexposed photo, and an underexposed photo, and place them exactly on top of each other and meticulously erase the parts that you don't want.

Those are the only way I can see about doing it.
What kind of camera are you using, do you have off camera flash? If you want dramatic lighting you can use a single light, or 2 with a high ratio. Google "dramatic lighting headshot" and you should find a bunch of tutorials I would bet.
I have a Canon Rebel T2i. I'm watching that video now and will google dramatic lighting headshot. Thanks for the help.

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