DPS Assignment: Still Life

Whooh! Man I have had one looong weekend! Nevertheless, I managed to meet this week's goals of getting the shop open for Arts! Arcata (another post for another time!)  &  got a few wonderful still life photos. In fact, I have more still life photos than I thought I would have and can't choose which one to enter in the DPS contest this week!

My first round of still life's were taken at the shop right before we opened for business for the first time EVER! The cheese platter was so yummy & composed so well it was begging to be photographed:

EXIF: Shutter Speed 1/40 ; F4.8 ; ISO 800 ; Focal Length 32mm; no flash

Our hella expensive hangers (around $12 each!) were so clean & perfectly arranged that I had to snap a shot or two of them:

EXIF: Shutter Speed 1/10 ; F4.5 ; ISO 1600 ; Focal Length: 30mm ; no flash

My second round- the real thing- was taken at home. We took the dog out to Sequioia Park for a walk after work where I grabbed a few ferns, cut some Calla Lilies out of my flowerbed, poured up the wine, and plated the yummy Humboldt Fog cheese. I wanted to set the scene telling a story about relaxation, peace and a nice quiet, luxurious night in with your loved one...

I lit the candle to do double duty- in some shots I used it more romantically as a prop and in other shots I used it more as lighting, keeping it off camera. I have a white shaded adjustable lamp behind the sofa which provided light in a few shots but was turned off for others. I forgot my tripod - left it at the shop!- so I didn't really get to use any low shutter speeds.

EXIF: Shutter Speed 1/30  F3.8 ; Focal Length 20mm

This image is of the Humboldt Fog cheese- The higher ISO I think makes the flowers look almost dreamy. The stripes on the sofa add to the classy subject matter and theme, the candle is a great center feature of the image. What I don't like is the corner glass of wine in the left, as well as cutting off the calla lily bottom.. but maybe the cutoff crop adds more interest & makes the image tighter? 

EXIF: Shutter Speed 0.4 ; F5.6 ; Focal Length 36mm

This image was taken with the candlelight only... It came out way to dark for my liking, but I think I captured the candle itself pretty well...

EXIF: Shutter Speed 1/6 ; F4.5 ; Focal Length 30mm

And this last one I think is the winner.... The light looks very crisp and clean (I used the candle off camera as well as the adjustable lamp.) The focus is mainly on the flowers with the wine and cheese somewhat blurred as part of the background. The light captured the edges of the flower on the left perfectly, accentuating the still blooming and opening flower... I also liked the shadows left by the ferns on the right flower. All in all I think this image tells the story I wanted to portray, has some clean lighting with a few interesting features, and looks to me like an advertisement I would see in a magazine...

Still Life was a really hard assignment for me to pull off.  I spent around an hour setting up and shooting- then setting up again and adjusting the light, then moving something a few inches, testing that ever important patience! This assignment taught me alot about lighting- what works and what doesn't and not to be afraid to experiment. I took around 100 images, and the three posted were the only ones I felt were decent. In the end with a little pre-planning and thought I am happy to say that I have successfully taken my first still-life photo shoot! Man, what an experience- can't wait until next weeks assignment- FENCES!

Location: My house
Date/Time: 5/16/10 @ 9pm
Subject(s): Still Life, DPS assignment
Notes: images have not been edited


Post a Comment