Beyond the Frame: First shoot

The project that I am currently working on for beyond the frame doesn’t have a title yet, but I have an interest in photographing the human eye close up. I used a digital medium format Hasselblad with a 120 macro lens.

I think that my first shoot went very well and i’m very pleased with the outcome of the images. Shown above is the set up that I began with, I used two hard lights on either side to give me even lighting on both eyes. The two lights had to be moved closer towards the camera as they were casting a shadow on the models face. Previously in the digital medium format workshop we used a ring flash when taking a picture of the eye but I didn’t like the ring it left inside the pupil. With the two hard light I was left with two dots in the eye but this was easy to photoshop out.
I had the model sitting down on a chair in front of the camera, leaning forward until they were too close to the camera to see where they lens limits were. I then wanted to try and make the image even more sharp so the model stood up with their head on the back on the wall, this was a little bit more difficult to manoeuvre the camera. The two lights as well were harder to position and kept casting a shadow. I tried only using one light but this didn’t work as well as two as it filled in the shadow the eyelashes cast.

Shown below are my favourite images from the shoot, I have shown them before and after editing so you can see the difference. I think the eyes look very interesting in black and white as you can really see the contrast in colours as the model has lots of different tones. I let the model wear make up in this shoot as it was a test and I wanted to see how it would turn out but I have now decided that I’m going to ask them not to have make up on the eye during the shoot as it acts as too much of a distraction.
I will perhaps see what the images look like when the model isn’t wearing make up to see whether I prefer black and white or colour.

What I am finding challenging with this project is the amount of editing I will need to do. I have never been a photographer that uses Photoshop much; I usually just do minor adjustment in Lightroom. I do feel however that I am getting better as using Photoshop to do more detailed adjustments.

I quite enjoyed experimenting with Photoshop on what I could do with the eye and shown below are the more abstract images made from cropping the originals. During the shoot the model said how her eyes looked like waves, so I thought it would be interesting to crop the image right down so that call you could see was the iris. These are shown in both colour and black and white, both I think that a different quality to them. I also did another where I had some of the iris and also the veins in the eye, this is a very interesting image, one that especially in black and white it doesn’t show the colours which I think would make it so it would be harder to figure out what you’re actually looking at.

Over all I’m very pleased with my first shoot, it had definitely got me thinking about the different possibilities this project could have and how I could experiment with it in different ways.

Contact Sheet





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