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4 Portraits in 30 minutes

When trying new things during a conference, it is always interesting to go for new visuals and creative shoots. I had 30 minutes, during a conference, explaining what I was going to shoot and how I was going to shoot it. So i took the decision to shoot 4 portraits in 30 minutes, with the fujifilm GFX 100 and a Profoto B10 Kit.

Shooting 4 portraits in 30 minutes of the same person, in super fast conditions, with the explanation, a conference setup, 70 to 80 people watching, and adding the “demo effect” when murphy’s laws come along to say hello, is what I would call fun and enjoyable.

I wanted to demonstrate that we could shoot very different portraits, looks & ideas with a super compact kit, and high end gear. Something I can call “minimalist” in terms of what photography can lead to.

Gear

The entire gear fits in the Profoto Core S bag provided with the Profoto Kit, and I still have space for 2 flashes, power cables and lenses. Both modifiers slide on the sides of the bag with the tripods.

This kit is perfect for indoors, and for spaces where we can add some weight (I usually use water bottles if needed on site, lightweight travelling).

low key

Dark moody portrait, with the GFX 100 tethered to Capture One, and the Profoto 2Ft octa + grid. Position of modifier is close to model to allow for rapid fall-off and loose the ambient light of the conference room (with all lights on).

4 portraits in 30 minutes. shutter drag portrait with Fujifilm GFX 100 & profoto B10 Duo kit Using only 1 light.

High Key

Once the portrait was shot in Low key, corporate businesses usually like some white background. However, in conference settings, or busy work environments, all you have available is a conference room, so why not go ahead and use 2 modifiers, including one as a white background ?

In this case I used the same position for the Profoto OCF 2ft Octa, and added the Profoto OCF 2×3 Softbox behind the subject to make a white background which was extended in post-production as it’s just a “drag & pull” from the white of the softbox to the sides of the image.

4 portraits in 30 minutes. high key portrait with Fujifilm GFX 100 & profoto B10 Duo kit.

Shutter Drag

Now the following 2 portraits are not for all corporate businesses, but they would work amazingly for sports, or edgy businesses wanting something a bit creative, edgy, new, graphic for their team.

For this first image, I positionned 2 B10’s on opposite sides of the model, 1 had the OCF 2ft Octa + grid, and the other just had a grid (flash was disabled, and only modeling light was used.

The Fujifilm GFX 100 was set to a slow shutter speed (1 second) at ISO 100, F8 (measured for the flash)

The flash was firing second shutter, allowing for some interesting drag. here’s the result of the shoot. In a real project condition, i would have shot it a few times more to try going more creative with the movement and light shapes.

4 portraits in 30 minutes. shutter drag body portrait with Fujifilm GFX 100 & profoto B10 Duo kit.

Drag & Gel headshot

When creativity drives the game, there is no limit to what we can do with 1 or 2 lights and a great dynamic range camera such as the GFX 100. You can work with pitch black and you can work with blown highlights, everything kind of works, and the results just lead to going more creative.

For this last portrait of the 4 portraits in 30 minutes, I added a red Gel to the B10 Plus used with modelling light, and left the other one as it was above.

GFX 100 settings were 1 second, Iso 100, F8, Rear Shutter (2nd Shutter) release of Flash. Movement came from model and myself to get the result.

4 portraits in 30 minutes. shutter drag portrait with Fujifilm GFX 100 & profoto B10 Duo kit.

Final Thoughts

When shooting creative portraits, go for the sky, reach the moon and focus on infinity. It doesn’t take a lot of gear, nor does it take being anxious, it’s just fun. For me, it’s part of what I love in photography. Some will like it, others won’t, and that’s part of who I am and what people hire me to do.

With such a compact kit from Profoto and a high end medium format like the GFX 100, i can travel the world, shoot projects, and deliver extremely strong work for my clients without dragging tons of gear. Moreover, Fujifilm is represented worldwide, so is profoto, so if I need anything, I know i’ll have access to a shop, retailer, or distributor I can rent or purchase gear from should I need something.

If you feel like dropping a comment, asking a question, or connecting, feel free to do so below in comments or by contact form.

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