01. Carla Monaco wears a sheer silk chiffon dress designed by Lisa Keating. I lit Carla with an Elinchrom Quadra and a Maxi Spot 40cm 29º Reflector. Fuji X-Pro1 with 18-55mm lens at f/6.4, 1/125th second using ISO 200. I used a three stop ND filter to keep the lens at a sensible aperture.
Model: Carla Monaco
Photography: Damien Lovegrove
Styling: Carla Monaco, Lisa Keating and Damien Lovegrove
Make up: Carla Monaco
NSFW after the jump
02. This is the first in a series of three natural light shots taken in the same location.
Fuerteventura was the setting for this wonderful figure in the landscape ‘Big Picture’ two day workshop. The 2014 event is booking up here.
The small island of Fuerteventura is just off the coast of Africa and while it was snowing in the UK we basked in 26º sunshine. This is just the second time I’ve shot with Carla so I arranged a recce and a practice shoot the day before the workshop. I had done a provisional recce of the island and a shoot with my mate and fellow tutor Martin Hill at the same time in 2012. So we knew it was going to be amazing. This recce with Carla was just to refresh my memory and check that everything was still okay. Together we mapped out our shoot locations, decided on the styling for each zone and planned the lighting set ups.
03. This is one of my favourites from the shoot in the sand dunes of Corralejo.
Camera: Fujifilm X-Pro1
Fujifilm Lenses: 14mm f/2.8, 18mm-55mm zoom f/2.8-4, 35mm f/1.4, 60mm f/2.4
Filters: Hoya circular polariser and ND x8
Lighting: Elinchrom Ranger Quadra kit – (best UK prices guaranteed here)
05. Taken on the recce, this shot was lit with the same Elinchrom Quadra and Maxi Spot reflector as I used in shot 01. Notice the three stop contrast ratio in the shadow under Carla’s chin.
06. The Elinchrom Quadra really does pack a punch. You can see the hard shadow from the sun in the foreground and a softer shadow from the Quadra head in the background. Fuji zoom lens at 52mm and f/11 for 1/125th second at ISO200. ND x8 Filter.
07. This is a naturally lit shot of Carla on the dunes. 60mm lens at f/8 for 1/500th second at ISO 200.
08. Grace, elegance and design.
09. I copied this natural light shot from Radmila Kerl, one of my delegates who flew in from Munich. She has a fantastic eye for capturing detail and beauty. This really was a coming together of creative passionate photographers for some inspiration time. The next year event details are here.
10. I lit Carla with one of my trademark lighting styles using the sun as a back light and the Quadra as the key light.
11. We captured soft beauty shots using reflected light once we had made our way to the first set of ruins.
12. The colour palette was calm and the contrast low. This is the perfect type of location to capture deep and soulful images.
14. I like Carla’s strength of character in this shot. I directed a diagonal in her shoulder line and chose a central composition to match the drama of her look.
15. The sun came and went throughout the two days of shooting. We rarely used it to directly light Carla but when we did the results were fabulous.
16. This spot on the recce day was bathed in flat light. On the workshop day it was sun lit as you can see in shots 39 and 40.
17. Here was the first time we used the Quadra with a 40cm Silver brolly. The softer shadows tell the story of the size and direction of the light source. I used the zoom lens on my Fuji at 18mm for this shot. The zoom at 18mm is sharper from wide open than the pancake prime lens of the same focal length, especially in the corners.
18. Another shot taken with the silver umbrella. I felt this room was a bit like a cell.
19. In the same space but with reflected natural light.
20. We went with big hair for this Bridget Bardot look.
21. This softly lit beauty shot uses the light from a simple reflector and a strong look from Carla completes the picture.
22. By contrast I used just sunlight for this powerful frame. Keeping the sun off Carla’s face is crucial to get this shot to work. Her shadow on the wall keeps the shot real. I love Carla’s curls in this shot.
23. Reflected sunlight makes this next sequence special. Knowing how to find and use great light is the key to the ruins section of this two day workshop.
24. Carla is a very experienced art nude model and can really shape herself beautifully. The colours of the walls in this room were perfect for this sequence of shots.
26. I showed how to use the Quadra from behind to create the illusion of sunlight coming through a hole in the roof.
29. End of the day sunlight is a joy to use when it can be controlled and reflected.
31. I used the simple reflector and translucent cover to light this shot of Carla in an extraordinary building.
32. Palms, a volcano and Carla Monaco.
34. A dead tree added to the mix. I shot this on the recce day but I find the tree a little distracting.
36. A simple over the shoulder look in my trademark dipped chin style where the shoulder provides a barrier to keep mystery in the picture.
37. I love to go in for beauty shots with my 60mm lens wide open at f/2.4
38. There were times when we used shadow patterns in our picture design. I lit Carla with a bare faced Quadra in this shot.
39. Bamboo roofing from a camel feeding station had collapsed into the room. I used it as a gobo.
41. The big picture figure in the landscape shot taken at the camel house using sunlight as a key.
42. Notice how similar the shadow is on Carla only this time she is lit with the Quadra set up as shown in shot 43 below.
43. The set up for my shot above. These delegates were getting a more funky low angle wide shot with the sun in the frame too. There were 6 delegates, Carla and me. The Quadra was being powered with the new lithium batteries and they went on for ever. We must have got well over 400 full power shots from each battery. We never quite exhausted two of the three batteries I had with me each day, even with seven shooters.
45. I decided to take the tutu I bought for my Black Swan workshop last month.
46. This was my favourite shot with the tutu. Polka dot shadows are fab.
47. Carla in full sun and lit with full power Quadra.
48. A wide shot showing the isolation and rugged landscape of Fuerteventura.
49. Next it was time for the beach.
51. The Quadra on full power worked wonders here too.
53. Full power Quadra here too.
Please feel free to comment on these shots. We covered quite a lot of styles, locations and genres over the two days. I don’t hang around on these events. We shoot as a team and never move on until everyone has their shots. We have fun together in the evenings and to many delegates these events are life enriching and some would say life changing.
Don’t just dream it, do it.
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