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 Friday, July 21, 2017
Along with the image quality test results I shared previously, vignetting, flare and distortion test results along with specs, measurements and standard product images have been added to the Canon EF-S 35mm f/2.8 Macro IS STM Lens page.
 
This inexpensive lens is still looking good, from both an image quality perspective and a stylish one. From a size standpoint, let's put things in perspective.
 
The Canon EF-S 35mm f/2.8 Macro IS STM Lens is in stock at B&H | Amazon | Adorama.
Posted to: Canon News
Post Date: 7/21/2017 7:25:06 AM CT   Posted By: Bryan
 Thursday, July 20, 2017
by Sean Setters
 
As I mentioned earlier this week, I recently renovated an old workshop to serve as my new photography studio. Above you can see a 360-degree view of the studio. Note that the middle of the panorama shows the back wall of the studio while the edges show the curtain-covered french doors opposite the back wall.
 
Below are some organizational tools and techniques I used for optimizing the space.
 
Black Light Portrait July 2017

Always Available 12' Background Support Crossbar
 
If you look closely at the panorama atop this post, you'll notice a 12' 4-section background support bar held up by the side walls. I purchased the support bar several years ago and it has served me well for larger backdrop needs. I had originally intended on hanging hooks from the rafters to hang the background support, but upon measuring the space, I realized that wasn't necessary. The walls of the studio are slightly less than 12' (3.66m), so it was relatively easy to add a couple of nails to the top of the walls to keep the background pole in place, while still being able to take the pole down when it's needed for on-location work.
 
Having the 12' background support semi-permanently installed has the benefits of freeing up storage space that would otherwise have been required for the collapsed set of poles while reducing setup time when the background support bar is actually needed.
 
For the shot above, I used (6) black lights to photograph Alexis in front of an 84x52" tapestry.
 


Snowboard Rack for Lightstands

Surfboard/Snowboard Rack for Light Stands/Tripods/Monopods
 
Want a great way store your light stands, tripods and monopods? Get a surfboard/snowboard rack! With 16" arms and a support rating of 100 lbs. (45.4kg), the surfboard rack can store a lot of gear neatly and efficiently.
 
Just how much lighting and photography gear can you support with a surfboard/snowboard rack? Well, right now, mine is holding:
 
(9) Light stands (of various sizes and weights)
(2) 40" Extension Arms
(2) Monopods (1 alloy, 1 carbon fiber)
(1) Avenger D600 Mini Boom
(1) Alloy Tripod
(1) Manfrotto 173B Mini Boom Arm
 
The above gear totals approximately 93 lbs (42.2kg).
 


Pegboard Organizer for Photography Gear

Pegboard for Misc. Supplies
 
I tried to make use of previously installed organizational items when possible, and the pegboard installed by the previous owner worked great for storing miscellaneous items such as the following:
 
A pegboard hooks variety pack was all I needed to transform this otherwise unutilized area behind my post-processing computer's monitors into a convenient storage solution for often-used gear.
 


Bungee Straps Securing Shelf

Ball Bungees Keep Gear In Check
 
After placing a few soft boxes/octa boxes on one shelf and umbrellas on another, I quickly realized I needed something to contain the items while leaving them quickly accessible. My solution was to wrap a ball bungee around the top portion of shelf section and a no-damage hair elastic band to the bottom portion of the shelf. With the two fitted together, the gear stays in place yet can be accessed very easily.
 
Parting Thoughts
 
Optimizing your gear storage will help you get the most out of your studio space, whether it's a small room, a garage or a large commercial workspace. By utilizing techniques similar to the ones outlined above, you can maximize floor space while simultaneously allowing for quick access to often-needed tools and supplies.
Post Date: 7/20/2017 12:40:41 PM CT   Posted By: Sean
B&H has the Tamron 18-400mm f/3.5-6.3 Di II VC HLD Lens for Nikon in stock with free expedited shipping.
Post Date: 7/20/2017 9:09:32 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
From Canon USA:
 
MELVILLE, N.Y., July 20, 2017 – For professionals who want sharp, brilliant and obsessively beautiful prints that they can share with the world, Canon U.S.A., Inc., a leader in digital imaging solutions, today announced its latest professional large-format inkjet printer - the imagePROGRAF PRO-6000. At 60-inches wide, the imagePROGRAF PRO-6000 printer is the largest 12-ink printer on the market today.
 
The PRO-6000 expands the PRO Series models offered from 17-inches to 60-inches wide, giving users the ability to own multiple sized printers all with the same print head, ink and image processor, helping to ensure the same high quality across the line. As with previous models, the PRO-6000 device’s sleek design emphasizes the link with Canon’s EOS digital cameras and red-line “L-series lens.” Highlights that set this model apart from the crowd include its 60-inch print width, the ability to feed from the only standard Multifunction Roll System in its class and a 12-channel system including Chroma Optimizer that offers spectacular image quality for the fine art and photographic markets.
 
“With the introduction of our largest model, the imagePROGRAF PRO-6000, we round out our full line of high quality PRO Series printers,” said Toyotsugu Kuwamura, executive vice president and general manager, Business Imaging Solutions Group, Canon U.S.A., Inc. “Our PRO Series now offers an expansive lineup of large-format inkjet solutions and sizes for a broad range of applications in the photo, fine art, proofing and graphics market segments.”
 
Designed to meet the needs of photo professionals and graphic artists, the imagePROGRAF PRO-6000 printer provides users with Canon’s input-to-output photo printing support, known as Crystal-fidelity. This solution allows users to obtain a print quality that accurately expresses the structure, clarity and texture of photos shot using Canon EOS DSLR cameras. Fine art professionals and graphic artists will welcome the versatility that the PRO-6000 offers, including the ability to print on various media types, such as glossy paper, matte paper and fine art textured paper.
 
"I prefer Canon large-format printers because of their amazing quality, as well as their outstanding reliability. With the new PRO-6000 printer, the singular print head further improves the quality of nozzle alignment for cleaner, sharper images. I can launch an entire roll’s worth of prints and be confident that I won’t find banding half way through the batch - a huge advantage over the competition,” said Cody Ranaldo, Technical Director for Griffin Editions NYC, a full-service fine art photographic printing, imaging and mounting studio. “The dual-roll loading system greatly reduces the amount of handling damage incurred when switching back and forth between rolls. Finally, there is an aqueous inkjet printer designed for a true production environment."
 
“One of our best clients has been waiting to offer her work in 60-by-60 inches and is excited to now be able to offer fine art prints to a new client base,” said Eric Luden, founder and owner of Digital Silver Imaging, based in Belmont, Massachusetts. “Commercial clients are especially excited to see the larger scale prints for their lobbies and conference rooms. Our new Canon PRO-6000, which includes all the improvements that we’ve come to enjoy on our Canon PRO-4000, will open up new opportunities and markets for our business.”
 
High-level Precision
 
As with previous models in the imagePROGRAF PRO line, the imagePROGRAF PRO-6000 model features the LUCIA PRO 11-color plus Chroma Optimizer ink system to provide exceptional image quality. The printer maintains this high print quality with a multi-sensor that calibrates the printer, helping to ensure color consistency from the first print to the last and across multiple PRO Series printers. It also features a high-precision mechanical platform, providing a uniform, rigid frame to reduce vibrations during printing and more accurate ink ejection as well as effortless media feeding capabilities, allowing users to no longer have to worry about blemished prints due to fingerprints.
 
Extraordinary Productivity
 
The imagePROGRAF PRO-6000 printer features the L-COA PRO processing engine for high-precision image reproduction and high-speed processing of high resolution data. The Sub-Ink Tank feature valued by users of the imagePROGRAF Series has been carried over to this model, helping to reduce downtime and minimize costs by automatically enabling ink tank replacement during printing. With both black ink types active at the same time, there is no need to waste time or ink by swapping out tanks when printing between matte and glossy paper. Right out of the box users will be able to print more as the imagePROGRAF PRO-6000 model comes with 330 ml starter ink tanks.
 
Media Handling
 
Typically an option for smaller sized models, a Multifunction Roll System (MFR) comes standard with this 60-inch model to allow for increased versatility. When used as a second roll, the MFR system enables users to load glossy media in one roll and matte media in the other to seamlessly print to both rolls without needing to manually switch media. The Multifunction Roll unit will intelligently switch to the correct media, automating the process and providing increased ease of use. The roll can also act as a take-up unit with bi-directional rewind, ideal for long, uninterrupted print runs.
 
User-Friendly Software
 
Included with this new imagePROGRAF PRO printer to help enhance user experience is Print Studio Pro, a plug-in for Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Lightroom1 and Canon Digital Photo Professional software. The Accounting Manager utility is included to help photographers keep track of consumable costs, such as ink and media, to help users determine their overall printing expenses. Also included is Device Management Console, an administrative tool which provides users with the means to manage up to 50 imagePROGRAF PRO Series printers, all from one location.
 
Availability
 
The imagePROGRAF PRO-6000 printer is expected to be available in August 2017 with an MSRP of $11,995.
Posted to: Canon News
Post Date: 7/20/2017 9:05:56 AM CT   Posted By: Sean

 
B&H has the Loupedeck Photo Editing Console for Lightroom 6 & CC available for preorder.
 
Product Highlights
 
  • For Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 6 & CC
  • Speeds Up Editing Workflow
  • Dedicated Dials, Wheels, and Keys
  • Access to Common Settings and Functions
  • Programmable Preset Buttons
  • USB 2.0 Connectivity
Category: Preorders
Post Date: 7/20/2017 7:48:29 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
From Sigma:
 
Thank you for purchasing and using our products. We would like to announce a firmware update for the SIGMA MOUNT CONVERTER MC-11 SA-E / EF-E.
 
This firmware update corrects the phenomenon that AF does not operate properly when some lenses that are not compatible with the MC-11 are attached. This firmware update does not guarantee accurate operation with lenses that are not compatible with the MC-11.
 
For customers who own the SIGMA MOUNT CONVERTER MC-11 SA-E / EF-E, please update the firmware via SIGMA Optimization Pro by connecting it to a computer using the supplied USB Cable.
 
* Before updating the MC-11 firmware, please ensure SIGMA Optimization Pro has been updated to ver. 1.4.1 or later for Windows, and ver. 1.4.0 or later for Macintosh from the following download page.
 
SIGMA Optimization Pro Download Page
 
Applicable product
 
  • SIGMA MOUNT CONVERTER MC-11 SA-E / EF-E
Benefit of this firmware update
 
  • It corrects the phenomenon that AF does not operate properly when some lenses that are not compatible with the MC-11 are attached.
Lenses that are not compatible with the MC-11
 
We will continue to consider ensuring stable operation of lenses that are not compatible with the MC-11. Therefore customers who are using the MC-11 can enjoy photography as much as possible with their own lenses even though there may be some restrictions. However, please note that due to the characteristics of the products, accurate operation, including AF, is not guaranteed with lenses that are not compatible with the MC-11.
Post Date: 7/20/2017 6:07:07 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
The Canon EOS Rebel SL2 is in stock at the following retailers:
B&H | Amazon | Adorama | Beach Camera
Posted to: Canon News
Post Date: 7/20/2017 5:18:41 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
 Wednesday, July 19, 2017
From Adobe:
 
The goal of this release is to provide additional camera raw support, lens profile support and address bugs that were introduced in previous releases of Lightroom.
 
Today, we also released versions of Lr for iOS and Android that provide updated camera support. Check them out here.
 
A few clarifications for this release:
 
What happened to Lightroom CC 2015.11/6.11?
 
Lightroom and Adobe Camera Raw releases are tightly coupled as both products share the Camera Raw imaging technology. As a product team, we decided to skip Camera Raw version 9.11 and instead use 9.12 due to the unfortunate events that occurred on that day. In keeping our version naming consistent, Lightroom is releasing CC 2015.12 / 6.12.
 
Will performance enhancements that I requested via the survey here be in this release?
 
Lightroom CC 2015.12 / 6.12 does not include performance improvements based on your survey responses. We appreciate your candid feedback on Lightroom performance, and are working on several projects to address your concerns.
 
New Camera Support in Lightroom CC 2015.12/6.12
 
  • Canon EOS 6D Mark II
  • Canon EOS 200D(EOS Kiss X9, EOS Rebel SL2)
  • Leica TL2
  • Nikon D7500
  • Olympus Tough TG-5
New Lens Profile Support in Lightroom CC 2015.12/6.12
 
Mount Name
Canon EF Venus Optics Laowa 12mm f2.8 Zero-D
Canon EF-S Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/4-5.6 IS STM
Fujifilm X Fujifilm WCL-X100 Wide-Angle Conversion Lens
Fujifilm X Fujifilm WCL-X100II Wide-Angle Conversion Lens
Fujifilm X Fujifilm TCL-X100II Tele Conversion Lens
Nikon F Venus Optics Laowa 12mm f2.8 Zero-D
Pentax K Venus Optics Laowa 12mm f2.8 Zero-D
Pentax K Venus Optics Laowa 105mm f2 (T3.2) Smooth Trans Focus
Sony A TAMRON SP 15-30mm F/2.8 Di VC USD A012S
Sony A TAMRON SP 35mm F/1.8 Di VC USD F012S
Sony A TAMRON SP 45mm F/1.8 Di VC USD F013S
Sony A TAMRON SP 90mm F/2.8 Di MACRO 1:1 VC USD F017S
Sony FE Sony FE 12-24mm F4 G
Sony FE Sony FE 16-35mm F2.8 GM
Sony FE Venus Optics Laowa 12mm f2.8 Zero-D
  

This release adds new color matching camera profiles for the following:
 
  • Nikon 1 V3: 5 Color profiles + Monochrome + Green, Orange, Red, Yellow Monochrome filter effects
  • Nikon D3400: Green, Orange, Red, Yellow filter Monochrome filter effects
  • Nikon D5: Green, Orange, Red, Yellow filter Monochrome filter effects
  • Nikon D500: Green, Orange, Red, Yellow filter Monochrome filter effects
  • Nikon D5600: Green, Orange, Red, Yellow filter Monochrome filter effects
  • Nikon D610: Monochrome + Green, Orange, Red, Yellow Monochrome filter effects
  • Nikon D7200: Green, Orange, Red, Yellow filter Monochrome filter effects
  • Nikon D750: Green, Orange, Red, Yellow filter Monochrome filter effects
  • Nikon D810: Green, Orange, Red, Yellow filter Monochrome filter effects
  • Nikon D810A: Green, Orange, Red, Yellow filter Monochrome filter effects
  • Nikon Df : Monochrome + Green, Orange, Red, Yellow Monochrome filter effect
  • Panasonic LUMIX DC-FZ80: Color and Monochrome profiles
  • Panasonic LUMIX DC-GF9: Color and Monochrome profiles
  • Panasonic LUMIX DMC-G7: Color and Monochrome profiles
  • Panasonic LUMIX DMC-G8: Color and Monochrome profiles
  • Panasonic LUMIX DMC-GX8: Color and Monochrome profiles
  • Panasonic LUMIX DMC-GX85: Color and Monochrome profiles
Customer reported issues resolved
 
  • Restriction on exporting a catalog with dots in the filename
  • HSL Target Adjustment Tool erratic behavior
  • Issue adding more than one line of text using identity plate in Print module
  • Navigator preview pane shows wrong photo
  • The inability to use larger sample sizes with the White Balance eyedropper tool
  • Image “blinks” when toggling between “Before Only” and “After only” views in Develop module
  • SDK LrDevelopController no longer works with ToneCurve PV 2012 Settings
  • Export from DNG to JPG for Flickr results in an error
  • GPS data from iPhone video not captured
  • iPhone video capture time is shifted upon import
  • Moving files causing erratic deletion of files
  • Filmstrip covers/overlaps filter and breadcrumb bar
  • Map module flashing “map offline”
An update on GPU Issues
 
Customers may still be experiencing crashing with earlier versions of AMD GPU drivers. Please update to the AMD Radeon Software Crimson ReLive Edition 17.7.1 to resolve this issue.
 
Installation Instructions
 
Please select Help > Updates to use the update mechanism in the Creative Cloud app.
 
Give us feedback
 
Once you’ve updated to the latest version of Lightroom, don’t forget to leave us feedback about your experiences.
 
Here are a few ways that you can send us feedback:
 
Report bugs and suggest features
Discuss workflow and get help with how-to questions or basic troubleshooting
 
Adobe Camera RAW 9.12
 
The goal of this release is to provide additional camera raw support, lens profile support and address bugs that were introduced in previous releases of Camera Raw. This release contains GPU related performance improvements in several areas including panning, zooming and the local adjustment brush.
 
New cameras, lenses and color matching profile supported can be found above in the Lightroom 9.12 Press Release.
 
Customer reported issues resolved
 
  • Fixed an issue where images taken with extended ISO on the Fujifilm GFX-50S were too bright.
  • In the Lens Correction panel, we will now display the message “Built-in” in the Make, Model, and Profile popup menus for raw files that contain built-in (automatic, opcode-based) lens corrections. Previously the Lens Correction panel would display “None”.
Installation Instructions
 
Please select Help > Updates to use the update mechanism in the Creative Cloud app.
 
B&H carries Adobe Photography Plan subscriptions.
Post Date: 7/19/2017 7:48:45 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
B&H has the Sigma 14mm f/1.8 DG HSM Art Lens for Canon in stock with free expedited shipping.
Posted to: Canon News
Post Date: 7/19/2017 6:23:56 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
Image quality results have been added to the Canon EF-S 35mm f/2.8 Macro IS STM Lens page.
 
As always, there are many comparisons that can be made, but I'll get you started with a comparison against a known good lens:
 
Canon EF-S 35mm f/2.8 Macro IS STM vs. EF 35mm f/2 IS USM Lens
 
The Canon EF-S 35mm f/2.8 Macro IS STM Lens is in stock at B&H | Amazon | Adorama.
Posted to: Canon News
Post Date: 7/19/2017 3:40:00 AM CT   Posted By: Bryan
You are planning to photograph the eclipse, right? This rare opportunity is coming to most of North America with the path of totality running coast-to-coast through the heart of the USA. The moon is going to cause the sun to disappear and that event is causing solar filters to disappear from retailer inventories. Don't wait to get yours!
 
Which solar filter should I get for my super telephoto lens? I just posted a review of that answer: The Meade Glass White Light Solar Filter.
 
You might be surprised at how inexpensive this filter is. The Meade Glass White Light Solar Filter is in stock at B&H | Amazon | Adorama. At least some sizes are in stock – preorder out of stock items immediately to get them in time for the big event.
 
You can also view the entire selection of solar filters at B&H, Adorama and Amazon.
 
If you don't own a super telephoto lens, this event is a great excuse to get one (some of these are also becoming scarce). If such a lens is not affordable or does not have long-term use, consider renting one.
 
Solar Eclipse Photography Resources
 
Here are some links that you may find useful. The first is NASA’s interactive map (click anywhere on it to get that location’s information). The second is our news feed of useful articles:
 
NASA: Interactive Solar Eclipse Map
Solar Eclipse Photography Tips (TDP posts)
Space.com's Solar Eclipse Guide
Solar Eclipse Exposure Calculator
American Astronomical Society: How to Shoot Solar-Eclipse Images & Videos
MREclipse.com: Solar Eclipse Photography Guide
NASA: Solar Eclipse Maps
NASA: Eclipse Photography
 Tuesday, July 18, 2017
From the Lightroom Journal:
 
Today, we’ve got lots of great updates for Lightroom for iOS and Android.
 
iOS
Available now through the iOS App Store, today’s release includes a new selective brush, a new details tab, and an improved interface for iPads. As always, Lightroom for iOS is free to use and can be downloaded here.
 
Selective Brush
 
One of the most requested features in Lightroom for iOS is now here—the selective brush. Using this tool, you can selectively paint in enhancements to any part of your image. If you’re using an iPhone that supports 3D Touch (such as an iPhone 6s or later), you can even vary the effect by just pressing softer or harder as you paint. And for iPad Pro users working with an Apple Pencil, you get the same capability—press harder to apply more of the effect, or softer to apply less.
 
We’ve also added in the ability to selectively erase both the linear and radial gradients, making them even more powerful than before.
 
Details Tab
 
Another often requested feature has been added in this release—global control over sharpening and noise reduction. These advanced tools are often used to add the finishing touches to photographs by controlling noise and enhancing image details.
 
New iPad Interface
 
With the introduction of the iPad Pro, and now the iPad Pro 2, the iPad has become a serious option as a laptop replacement for any photographer. To that end, we’ve worked hard to make a truly portable and yet powerful version of Lightroom that is designed for the larger touch-based interface of an iPad.
Android
We wanted to provide the best Android experience possible so we redesigned Lightroom for Android from the ground up to be faster, more efficient, and, well, more Android-y. Every screen has been redesigned with the goal of ensuring a natural, native Android experience while providing the highest quality, professional-grade mobile photo editing app ever.
 
Check out some of the new and updated interfaces by downloading this free update now by tapping here.
B&H carries Adobe Photography Plan subscriptions.
Post Date: 7/18/2017 12:10:01 PM CT   Posted By: Sean
From Canon USA:
 
Print and Share Photos with the Touch of Your Compatible Smartphone2 at all of your Parties and Get-Togethers
 
MELVILLE, N.Y., July 18, 2017 – Canon U.S.A. Inc., a leader in digital imaging solutions, announced today the new SELPHY CP1300 Wireless Compact Photo Printer. This lightweight, mobile and Wi-Fi1-enabled printer makes sharing memories in real-time so easy, and is the perfect accessory to add an extra level of fun and entertainment to any party. An update to the popular SELPHY CP1200 printer, the new SELPHY CP1300 is perfect for connected digital camera or smartphone users in search of a portable Wi-Fi enabled printer that can be used virtually anywhere, anytime, thanks to its optional direct-connect battery (no wires), to print the perfect photos.
 
Features include:
 
  • Party Shuffle Print: While previous SELPHY models included a Shuffle Layout function, the SELPHY CP1300’s Party Shuffle Print function is designed to allow Wi-Fi connected users to connect multiple compatible mobile devices2 to the same SELPHY CP1300 unit for everyone to enjoy creating a print layout made of combined images from family and friends.
  • Larger LCD Screen Size: Images are now displayed on a reader-friendly 3.2” tilt-type LCD monitor. By increasing the screen size, users can more easily see printing options, especially when in a busy party setting.
  • Improved User Interface: Category settings have been updated and rearranged to illustrate what a specific function is and what it can do. For example, showcasing a multiple photo layout image to prompt the user to touch that option for multi-photo printing.
  • Date Filter & Multi-Playback Jump: Image searching is improved with the ability to filter by date and browse by page rather than one image at a time.
  • New Photo Booth Friendly Layout Sizing: With DIY party and get together photo booths expediently growing in popularity, users can now print a 2-inch x 6-inch photo strip, helping immortalize anything from a children’s birthday party to a dream wedding. Simply have some props ready and an instant photo booth is ready to go!
“Sharing memories is so important to us all, and with the new SELPHY CP1300 printer, printing photos of friends and family is so simple,” said Yuichi Ishizuka, president and COO, Canon U.S.A., Inc. “The new improvements made to the SELPHY CP1300 take into account consumer feedback and offer enhanced capabilities and additional versatility that we hope helps users get even more joy out of printing their precious memories and fun times.”
 
Other features include:
 
  • Optional Direct Battery Connection: Direct battery attachment makes it more convenient to print on the go, even if power isn’t available.
  • Border Settings: To meet user demand, photos can either be printed without borders or by choosing border colors for single photo or layout settings on the printer itself.
  • Connectivity: With the dedicated Wi-Fi button, it's so easy to get the CP1300 set up on a wireless network. Once that is done, you can use the Canon PRINT App2, AirPrint3, Wireless PictBridge4 and more.
The SELPHY CP1300 printer has a suggested retail price of $129.99 and is offered in black and white models.
 
B&H has the Canon SELPHY CP1300 Wi-Fi enabled printer available for preorder.
Posted to: Canon News
Post Date: 7/18/2017 11:38:28 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
Adorama has the Sigma 14mm f/1.8 DG HSM Art Lens for Canon in stock with free expedited shipping.
Posted to: Canon News
Post Date: 7/18/2017 11:31:21 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
by Sean Setters
 
I just moved into a new house in Savannah and, unfortunately, this one didn't have a large extra bedroom with high ceilings to use as my studio/office space. Fortunately, it did have a detached building that served as the previous owner's workshop.
 
The floor space available inside the workshop is 17' 5" x 11' 2.5" x 10' 5". The ceiling is 10' 5" at its apex but angles down to create walls which are roughly 7' high. As far as photography studios are concerned, this area is adequate for many needs but few would consider it spacious (especially with the gear that would eventually fill it).
 
After cleaning out the shop, washing the walls, installing insulation in the ceiling and fixing a minor electrical issue, it was time to decide on what color to paint the walls. Traditionally speaking, white is a good option. But I decided that the traditional option wasn't right for this space.
 
My previous studio was very slightly larger than this one. And even in that space, controlling light spill could prove problematic. That's because of the numerous nearby bright (yellow) colored walls for the light to bounce off of. Aside from the wall color making color balancing a pain (an x-rite ColorChecker Passport helped), limiting fill light in the space required using black [negative fill] cards for certain shoots.
 
So while white walls would have helped me avoid color balance issues, it would have compounded my previously-experienced light spill issues in a small (but larger than this) space. After thinking it over, I went to Home Depot and asked the associates in the paint department to mix me "middle gray," or specifically, 18% gray. Apparently, that's not a color that's found in their system. The next day I took a gray card to Home Depot and asked for a color match.
 
The above photo was taken just after the studio was painted. There's substantially less useable space now that my studio gear is all in place.
 
For this relatively small space, the benefits of having 18% gray walls include:
 
  • Less light is reflected compared to white walls, helping to limit light spill for better overall control.
  • For the light that does bounce off the walls, color influence is negligible.
  • A gray background is great for classic portraiture.
  • When gelling the background with flash, gray tends to work better because gelled flashes firing at white walls tend to get washed out relatively easily if any of your ungelled main light contaminates the background.
Unfortunately, there's only one small section of the room where the wall is actually bare and useable for background purposes, and that particular section is located on one of the longer sides of the room (shown above, left side between two power outlets), leaving a relatively small working space that is more appropriate for headshots or head-and-shoulder portraits as opposed to full length portraits. I can of course shoot longways in the studio with many other background options available. Below is recent head-and-shoulders shot I made in the new studio that was used by the subject's parents for a modeling call.
 
Head and Shoulders Modeling Image

So far, I'm pretty happy with how the studio turned out. I'll be making another post later this week about some of my organizational techniques utilized for the space.
Post Date: 7/18/2017 7:30:24 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
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