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Shoot from the Hip!

I first saw this self portrait concept in one of my contacts photo streams and I loved it. I had to have a go for myself!


Stesettantadue's version is excellent IMO. But as an exercise I wondered how David Hobby or Joe McNally might light it. I can remember David recently saying he was "digging hard wrap around light" and Joe’s comment that "everybody looks better when they’re warm" was bouncing around in my head too, so I thought that’s what I’ll do.


For my part I wanted to create some drama so I held the strobe in a shoot from the hip position and backed the top half of my body away form that dreaded brolly!


Here is Stesettantadue 's version and I thank him for the idea. This has certainly been the most difficult self portrait I've attempted, with 4 strobes and 10 seconds to get exactly into position in the dark, it was tough to get it right. Needless to say it took many frames to get the shot I wanted.


Strobist Info: Nikon SB25 speedlight on 1/8th power and 50mm zoom shot from the hip into a 41" white umbrella. A second Nikon SB25 gaffer taped to the shaft of the umbrella with a wide diffuser and set to 1/8th power. For the wrap around backlighting a third Nikon SB25 camera left on 1/16th power and 85mm zoom and a Canon 430EX back camera right on 1/32 power with a 6" snoot. Strobes triggered by Pocket Wizard ll's. To warm the shot up a touch I set the white balance to “cloud” (approx 6000k) and shot with the bare strobes. I tried a quarter CTO gel but it coloured the white brolly to much and I didn’t like that look.


Learn to light at


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Taken on May 24, 2008