By Antonio Malara
I admit that the word “studio” is exaggerated but it worked for my intentions. It’s since long time that I want to try to do a self portrait photo shooting with artificial background but I postponed this plan because I’m too perfectionist. I wanted to realize it creating a studio in my home so I started to buy some of the things needed for this project. Soon I understood that I didn’t have enough space and I had to plan it again but not in the way I wanted. For this reason I couldn’t use the focal lens I had planned and I decided not to invest in the right background and lights. So I reprogrammed it using a wide lens instead of a tele and a natural sunny light. I didn’t buy a good background for this first try because I had no idea about the result. I already had three basic colors background and I opted for the black. Of course I had a room in my mind but a I changed idea for another one. When I set all in a late morning I started to do the first try. Using an 18 mm aps-c lens (which is a 27 mm equivalent in 35 mm) I had to set the tripod at the right eight to avoid strange perspectives. When you take a self portrait with a wide lens there’s the risk to come out with a big chest and small unnatural legs (or the opposite).
I was happy about that try because the light was as I wanted, unfortunately was lunch time and I decided to do the self portrait in the afternoon. When I back in the “studio” at 3 PM, the light was different, more precisely there was a direct sun light on the left side of the background. I blamed myself for not having done the shooting in the morning and I tried to do my best in that different light condition. The experience has been interesting, with lot of walking from camera to the pose but it was good to learn the position, it’s funny how some centimeters can change the pose in a best or worse way.
I have to say that it’s impressive how many things is possible to understand even from the mistakes, that’s why I liked the experience. For example another bad thing was that the beginning of golden light gave a yellow tone which was too intense on the black background. For the same reason along with the direct sun light, the result is an hybrid between a studio and an outside set. At the end I really enjoyed the self portrait experiment, at this point I only need to find a better and bigger space where I can free my creativity because shooting in a studio is a different experience compared to an outside location.
Photo: Antonio Malara