Bridal Fashion Workshop with Carla Monaco ~ Pictures

The beautiful Carla Monaco lit with a single Lupolux Quadlight 1500 with the new grid attachment. Heavenly light.

1. The beautiful Carla Monaco lit with a single Lupolux Quadlight 1500 with the new grid attachment. Heavenly light for a classical look.

I shot all of these 33 pictures using the Fujifilm X-Pro1 with the 18-55mm zoom lens and a Tiffen Black Pro Mist 1/8th filter attached. One camera, one lens and up to two lights at any time for a simple yet stylish shoot. I had 5 delegates with me and we shot all day in the sumptuous Hilton Hotel in Manchester. We were in the Cloud 23 bar all morning and then after a delightful lunch we moved to the corridors and reception areas for the afternoon shoot.

A single light can be so effective if it has a lens and barn doors.

2. A single light can be so effective if it has a lens and barn doors. I used the Lupolux DayLED 1000 for this shot.

Dresses: Lisa Keating
Makeup and hair styling: Emma MacKenzie
Model: Carla Monaco

We lit Carla with a pair of Speedlights in a Lovegrove Gemini bracket and a silver umbrella.

3. We lit Carla with a pair of Speedlights on a Lovegrove Gemini bracket rigged with a silver umbrella.

I worked with a narrow gamut and aimed for a harmony of colour hues.

04.

4. Carla has wonderful lines to light. Same lighting set up as above.

5. We moved over to the window with the Gemini rig.

5. We moved over to the window with the Gemini rig for this full length shot.

6. I love to really explore the balance and structure of a face from different angles. I totally love this angle and the delicate curves that are scribed by Carla's ¾ profile.

6. I love to really explore the balance and structure of a face from different angles. I totally love this angle and the delicate curves that are scribed by Carla’s ¾ profile. Emma’s fabulous work with Carla’s hair and make up completes the look.

7. A splash of Gemini flash was used for this shot too.

7. A splash of Gemini flash was used for this shot too.

8. The Manchester skyline was underexposed by a couple of stops to make this dramatic shot lit with a pair of Speedlights.

8. The Manchester skyline was underexposed by a couple of stops to make this dramatic shot lit with a pair of bare faced Speedlights.

9.

9. The Gemini combo worked well for this shot.

10. We explored different framing options and I opted for the 18mm end of my Fujifilm zoom to pull in the ceiling.

10. We explored different framing options and I opted for the 18mm end of my Fujifilm zoom to pull in the ceiling.

11. The low viewpoint and the Gemini Speedlight combo makes this shot.

11. The low viewpoint and the Gemini Speedlight combo makes this shot.

Fashion shoots for a designer have to show the whole dress from the front back and ¾ views plus we have to shoot the details too. This workshop was aimed at those photographers wanting to offer their brides a fashion shoot type experience. I gave less attention to the dress than I would do on a commercial shoot and I gave Carla a bit more of a role and prominence.

12. I can't resist reflections.

12. I can’t resist reflections.

13. It's not like me to play with colours but I thought I'd blend cool shadows with warm highlights. Straight colour is always my favourite choice.

13. It’s not like me to play with colours but I thought I’d blend cool shadows with warm highlights on a couple of shots. Straight colour is always my favourite choice.

14. Lit with the Lupolux Quadlight in the same set up as picture 1.

14. Lit with the Lupolux Quadlight in the same set up as picture 1.

15. Black and white is more of a distortion as we never see in black and white but I love it.

15. Black and white is more of a distortion than cross processed colour as we never see our world in black and white, but I love it.

16. I chose a ground level viewpoint for this shot lit with the Lupolux 1000 LED spotlight.

16. I chose a ground level viewpoint for this shot lit with the Lupolux DayLED 1000 spotlight.

17. The Lupolux spotlight light delivers such a flattering light.

17. The Lupolux spotlight light delivers such a flattering light with crisp hard shadows.

18.

18. Carla is such an experienced model that she can really be left to her own devices on a shoot. I like to take control a bit too much but perhaps it’s because I’ve photographed over 400 weddings for non models who needed help posing.

19. I showed the group how to make a wedding dress shine.

19. I showed the group how to make a wedding dress shine.

20. Carla looks fabulous in this pose. Perhaps it's my favourite

20. Carla looks fabulous in this pose. The dress is divine too. I could see this shot on the cover of a 1940′s Brides magazine.

21. I never rule out the passport pose square on to deliver striking shot.

21. I never rule out the passport pose, square on and emotionless to deliver a striking shot. This is down to breath taking beauty and simple complimentary light.

22. We explored the simple reflections of our lighting in the brushed stainless doors of the lift.

22. We explored the simple reflections of our Speedlight based lighting rig in the brushed stainless doors of the lift. I spent a lot of time on my knees on this workshop.

23. A fleeting moment caught. Perfect for one of those black and white cards with speech bubble captions. What would your caption be? Best answer in the comments below gets a complimentary download of my next video production due out in Feburary (2013).

23. A fleeting moment caught. Perfect for one of those black and white cards with speech bubble captions. What would your caption be? Best answer in the comments below gets a complimentary download of my next video production due out in February (2013).

24. With the build up to my Film Noir workshops in full flow I had to show some simple lighting techniques using two Lupolux spotlights.

24. With the build up to my Film Noir workshops in full flow I had to show some simple Hollywood lighting techniques using just two Lupolux spotlights.

25. The halation is caused by light scatter on the Tiffen Black Pro Mist filter attached permenantly on my 18-55mm Fujinon zoom lens.

25. The halation is caused by light scatter on the Tiffen Black Pro Mist filter attached permanently on my 18-55mm Fujinon zoom lens.

26.

26. Again, just two lights were used for this shot that looks like it was lit with three.

27. The Manchester Hilton has a fabulous staircase that comes alive after dark.

27. The Manchester Hilton has a fabulous staircase that comes alive with light after dark.

28. The Lupolux DayLED 650 spotlight was used through dingle for this shot.

28. The Lupolux DayLED 650 spotlight was used through dingle for this shot. The warm glow is coming from uplighters in the floor.

29. A bit of clever dickery was used for this shot under the stairs.

29. A bit of clever dickery was used for this shot under the stairs. I’m not sure I like it but it shows we were looking and trying. It’s good to make mistakes. It’s better still to admit them at the time and move on quickly.

30.

30. Using a spotlight with a lens and a set of barn doors you can control where the light doesn’t fall. Sometimes this is very important to isolate the subject.

31. It was completely dark in this staiwell.

31. It was completely dark in this stairwell. The Hilton is lit with pools of light.

32.

32.

33. Sometimes a face draws me in.

33. Sometimes a face draws me in. Carla has one of those faces. I’m going to share an obsovation with you. Look how level Carla’s eyes are in this picture. Now look at shot 21. When I was a lighting director at the BBC we learned how to create symmetry in faces using light and camera angles. It pays to really look at the person you are shooting.

This was my first shoot with Carla and I am very excited about our next shoot together. Take a look at this! Carla and I would love you to join us. There are just two places left (at the time of writing) and I’ll be mood boarding the shoot this weekend.

Please feel free to comment below.

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About Damien

Damien Lovegrove learned his trade as a cameraman and lighting director during 14 years at the BBC, working on programmes such as the Clothes Show, Top of the Pops and Casualty. Fifteen years on, Damien has become one of the foremost trainers of photography and entrepreneurial business strategies in our industry. A published writer and regular columnist, Damien has travelled the globe sharing his knowledge and expertise. “Photography fascinates me” declares Damien. "Much of my photography is inspired by a burning enthusiasm within me” explains Damien. “Picking up a camera gives me such a rush that I’m instantly driven to create pictures.”

24 thoughts on “Bridal Fashion Workshop with Carla Monaco ~ Pictures

  1. Absolutely beautiful images Damien, I think this set is right up there with your best work, you must feel very proud.
    Favourites are no. 1, 2, 6, 14, 15, 16, 25, 28 & 32. No.2 is simply stunning with very clever and thoughtful use of
    just one light illustrating total control – I would love a fine art print of this!!
    Thinking of a caption for image no. 23 – I’ll come back to you on this :-)

  2. Great photos Damien. That hotel looks soooo cool btw. And the caption: “oh I can’t remember if I turned of that iron” ;)

  3. Some of these are jaw droppingly good. I love the colours in 13 and 14 while the connection to the viewer in 17 is bold it stopped me dead

  4. Wonderful control of lighting and the use of shadow to bring out the beauty of the model and her clothing.
    My suggestion for a caption: ” Do you think it might be easier if you took the lens cap off?”

  5. This was another fabulous day of learning Damien… amazing venue, beautiful model and stunning images. The knowledge that you share on the day is invaluable and I’m happy to say that one or two of my own images are now of a standard that is not too far behind yours. This simply would not have been possible without your generous input and advice.

    I simply love images 1, 10, 13, 14, 15 & 30

    My offering for a captions to image 23 is, “OMG, Damien wasn’t joking about planking naked in the hotel lobby”

  6. Another wonderful set of images Damien
    Your model really had a classic beauty look and your lightning is again sublime

    My caption would be : OMG! Are you using the zoom lens on the Fuji Xpro and not a prime lens?

  7. Great set of pictures and very interesting, as always.
    My caption: “Would you give the endless chatter a rest and just take the picture please!”

  8. Great work as usual. Would love to learn how to do 3 – 10 type of work using speedlights (in a far away country stops me from attending your workshops but hope you’ll produce your studio light training like one for small flashes).

    My caption : “NOOO More Primes”

  9. Hi Darren,

    Wow praise indeed. Such a long list of favourites too. I’m moving my style to editorial fashion as there are many other photographers teaching foundation wedding and portrait shooting. This is at the kind of level I can keep my workshops unique and maintain my customer demand. Continual progress is the currency of continued success.

    Thank you for my picture compliments. I really appreciate you taking the time to comment.

    Best regards, Damien.

  10. Thanks Sona :) The Manchester Hilton is amazing for workshops but expensive too as you can imagine. It’s quite a privilege to be shooting there.

    Cheers, Damien.

  11. Hi Ian,

    Thanks for your kind words. It’s the first time I’ve shot Carla and I’m sure our partnership will flourish in Fuerteventura in a months time. There are still a couple of places on this 2 day workshop. Haha. Anyway I really appreciate your fab feedback.

    Best regards, Damien.

  12. Hi Aneil,

    Your work is right up their my friend. A few tweaks here and there and you are a top quality pro capable of working international commissions. Now make it happen :)

    Respect and hugs, Damien.

  13. Thank you Michaela,

    If you like these, keep a look out for my Scottish castle in winter and Film Noir sets in the coming week. Thank you for your encouragement. It means a lot.

    Best regards, Damien.

  14. Hi Sank,

    I think an interior Speedlights type video production is definitely on the cards. Maybe my workshops will come to your far away country. Wherever that is ;) It has been known. My workshops have been to Australia, USA, Germany, Italy, Spain, Belgium, France, Netherlands and I might do a South East Asia tour soon.

    Stay in touch and stay creative,

    Damien.

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