Wednesday, January 11, 2012

51/52 Kieran Bannerman

We have finally reached a point where I have a perfectly valid reason to use the word "penultimate." Yes, this is the second to last portrait of the series. The last two hail from a trip abroad, providing for some very interesting settings and an opportunity to connect with subjects I would have never been able to photograph otherwise.

Kieran Bannerman is a 19 year old student. He was born and raised in Invergordon, Scotland and currently attends the University of Edinburgh. He's already completed two years of his studies and is pursuing a degree in medicine. His area of specialty is as of yet undecided, but he is considering becoming a surgeon. He currently works at the Glenmorangie house, a guest house run by the Scotch brand of the same name. In his time off he enjoys playing football proper (soccer, as we call it) and cycling.

When I met Kieran it was his second day on the job at the Glenmorangie house. I was bound and determined to take a portrait of someone Scottish. The folks at Glenmorangie kept us plenty busy checking out their facilities as well as the area around the distillery, and I was running out of time before heading off to London for a few days. About an hour before our final dinner at the house, I began asking employees of the house to see if I could muster someone to use as a subject. Kieran's coworkers kindly volunteered him without his consent, and he was kind enough to oblige.

The help of Jess de Oliveira was once again enlisted, helping as always with all things production. Here she is as a stand in after the shoot:

We walked out the front door and down the path towards the front gate.The entire area is ridiculously beautiful, as witnessed in this set of photos I took at the Glenmorangie house. I used the path leading to the gate as the background, with the beautiful large trees surrounding it and the North Sea in the distance. I used an SB-600 as the key, placing it at high camera left with a 1/4 CTO gel. Scottland, albeit incredibly beautiful, can tend to be a bit gloomy. I shot on ISO 800 in order to make the most of the ambient light and dialed the flash in likewise.

After the shoot we all came inside just in time to realize we had missed my coworker Scott proposing to his lovely girlfriend (now fiance) Natalia. We came in seconds after the public announcement to many tears and congratulations. Dinner was to start any minute, but I quickly proposed to Scott that we do a very quick impromptu engagement photo shoot. We rushed outside as light was quickly fading. We ended up getting a pretty awesome image of the happy couple just minutes after making things official half way across the globe. 

I gelled 1/2 CTO in hopes of capturing and matching the warm sunset light coming through the trees in the background. I also keyed from camera left so that Natalia would be facing towards the key and Scott away from it. This allowed me to light him in a way that brought a bit of drama into the frame, and at the same time to light her in a way that was very even and flattering.

Strobist Info:
SB-600 camera left through silver-over-white umbrella with 1/2 CTO gel

Camera Settings:
1/125 f/5.6 at ISO 800
Tamron 17-50 f/2.8

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