Studio Pinup Girl
Old 05-10-2012   #1
MarkoKovacevic
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Studio Pinup Girl

I'm not totally satisfied with this collection of images - though I never am really satisfied. I'd love to know an honest opinion - what works, what I could improve.. what do you like, what do you hate? Be honest, because only through honest evaluation of work, can an artist improve.

Nikon D90, 50mm. Single umbrella.


_DSC8293 by kovacevicmarko, on Flickr


_DSC8291 by kovacevicmarko, on Flickr


_DSC8281 by kovacevicmarko, on Flickr


_DSC8279 by kovacevicmarko, on Flickr


_DSC8227 by kovacevicmarko, on Flickr
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Old 05-10-2012   #2
Araakii
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I like 3, at least there's an interesting element in there. Other than that one, the other 4 don't interest me at all. The location is random, the poses are not very flattering and the lighting is kind of generic.
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Old 05-10-2012   #3
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I prefer no. 4, but would crop above the knees
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Old 05-10-2012   #4
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Looks like you omitted and introduced items to spice up the shots.

- Lose the rings, pearl earring
- Easy on the make-up
- Might as well leave the lip piercings in, the holes are obvious
- Don't direct cigarettes and bottles.

Sit the model down and tell her to have a drink and a smoke while you set up and test shoot. Make sure there's not much to set up and keep shooting. Ask her to do some nice tricks with the smoke or the booze, or make a trick up.

By the time she asks 'when do we start' you will have a slew of good, unposed shots already.

The lighting and set up, either do it right (better quality lighting, what's with the background?) or leave it.

YMMV, just my 2 cents. You gotta do it your way, not mine.


Enjoy the shoot!
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Old 05-10-2012   #5
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I like 5 out of the set. Feel there is unnecessary distracting elements in 1, 2 and 4 for me. 3 doesn't really do it for me, and for that type of shot to work for me there would need to be some element of sensuality or eroticism in the cigarette smoke and pose, and wonder if you had a series of rapidly shot images of this concept (girl blowing smoke), that you might have gotten a really good shot as you capture the action unfold where everything aligns.

Concept-wise, personally I don't find cigarettes and alcohol sexy, in the same way macro shots of cigarrette butts do not do it for me. Think the theme can work, but my own preference would be to fuse it with elements of noir and romanticism, to take the harsh edge off the actual props themselves, and more on the activity involving them, and what they imply about the scene.

In any case, just me 2 cents. These things are highly personal, and the above would be some of the things I would favour.
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Old 05-10-2012   #6
MarkoKovacevic
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Quote:
Originally Posted by buzzardkid View Post
Looks like you omitted and introduced items to spice up the shots.

- Lose the rings, pearl earring
- Easy on the make-up
- Might as well leave the lip piercings in, the holes are obvious
- Don't direct cigarettes and bottles.

Sit the model down and tell her to have a drink and a smoke while you set up and test shoot. Make sure there's not much to set up and keep shooting. Ask her to do some nice tricks with the smoke or the booze, or make a trick up.

By the time she asks 'when do we start' you will have a slew of good, unposed shots already.

The lighting and set up, either do it right (better quality lighting, what's with the background?) or leave it.

YMMV, just my 2 cents. You gotta do it your way, not mine.


Enjoy the shoot!
Thank you everyone, for the fantastic tips, ideas, and observations.
My lighting setup is a bit low-rent and tricky unfortunately (metz flash paired with an umbrella ) - not sure how to improve on it, besides practice. Looking back, I feel I should have tried a slew of locations and ideas, rather than a singular one. The unposed "oh we're just setting up" photos are a great idea, one which I will certainly try on the next shoot.

Damien, you've got a great idea regarding fusing the props with a feeling rather than them simply being props. Photography is all about the feeling you get.

Thank you everyone
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Old 05-10-2012   #7
konicaman
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I like 1 and 2 but if you want to use the setting as part of the shot, we should probably see more of it. The light is ok in my book - could be coming from a window, probably a cellar window, kind of a natural look.

5 is also nice (I would also crop above the knee line).

Smoke can of course be a prop as well but I think it would work better if we saw her sideways, eyes fixed on the smoke or infinity.

3 bottles? Phallic symbolism is fine with me, but it looks very arranged indeed with those 3 bottles. Maybe just the Bacardi bottle and the girl either holding it or sitting very laid back with her hands hanging loose over the back of the couch?

And as buzzardkid says - pretend to do some "test shooting".

Pretty model BTW
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Old 05-10-2012   #8
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I think all of these shots could of worked well if you studied her more, to pick out her best angles.

I like her look in no.4, I can really see potential there. You don't need props, maybe 1 bottle. She is very interesting and attractive. Her knees look huge because of the way you have her posed with her legs tucked under. I'm sure they are not, but you have to look for these things.

Walk around her and study her from every angle and the shots will present themselves.

Just my opinion of course....
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Old 05-10-2012   #9
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I don't think the model's dress does her any favours.
What looks like a safety pin where I think a strap might be got my attention straight away.
The first two shots with the window I found off putting.
I didn't like the black couch against the pale wall with the model part way between every time - the same amount of her sticking up above the couch. For me there was too much contrast between couch and wall.
I prefer more natural portraits rather than very posed and contrived ones like this. Her reading a book or newspaper might well change the colour balance and using the pale wall as a reflector might give you more lighting possibilities.
Honest comment - hope it helps somewhere.
For goodness sake keep going and don't be put off.
There is always another model, somewhere, and another location.

jesse
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Old 05-22-2012   #10
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To be totally honest, if I were the OP I would seek for something other than "pinup photography" to apply my efforts.
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Old 05-22-2012   #11
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- The backgrounds don't work for me.
- The model's pose, sitting on her legs like this doesn't photograph well.
- More variations of face angles, poses, camera angles needed I think.
- The only pic where her face is photographed well is #4 but the bottles and the lower body ruin the shot.
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Old 05-22-2012   #12
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I'd also suggest looking in to poses a bit. Her arms are so close to her body. Her shoulders are somewhat square to the camera in several of the shots (though to be fair it almost works in #4 to me).

I agree with others on the background feeling incidental. Either figure out how to leverage it in the frame or omit it.

Same sort of deal with the shadows on her face honestly. It feels like its in the middle between a darker, noir look a softer beauty shot. Which were you going for? I certainly get lighting limitations but look for ways to play with it; diffusing the light, bouncing it off of something, etc... it could soften it a bit as it feels harsh for the style to me. Hard on her shoulders with shadows that aren't entirely attractive across her face. In some ways a darker, more noir style may have worked well here (particularly given a room you could probably make quite dark).

The very light, very close wall was probably acting as a bit of a bounce for your lights, cutting the dramatic element a bit. You could use this to your advantage - almost use it like a huge softbox by bouncing light off of it - or reduce the effect with a darker or more distance background.

The color pallet seems a bit off for pin up. I'm more use to almost garish colors. IT seems like you may be able to get closer to a vintage style given the tones, dress and model.

Looking through your flickr stream, there are some wonderfully lit shots and some shots in the same setting which work better to me. You obviously have it in you but I don't think this set is your strongest work.
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Old 05-22-2012   #13
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To me the first image doesn't work at all. The pose does no justice to a beautiful model. I agree with the cropping suggestions on some of the photos (above the knees) but I think converting them to B/W will show a whole new aspect to your work.

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Old 05-25-2012   #14
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Needs red lipstick. Can't be a classic pinup without red, red lipstick. #4 would be a good shot if cropped as Cron suggested, and if she had red lipstick.
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Old 05-25-2012   #15
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To be totally honest, the cigarette totally ruins it!

Smoking is not sexy or glamorous, sorry!
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