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Behind The Shoots

A Tough Afternoon, Fashion Shoot in Papuma

Among The Rocks. Fashion, make up and hair do by Bubah Alfian. Model: Tiara.
Among The Rocks. Fashion, make up and hair do by Bubah Alfian. Model: Tiara.

Among The Rocks #4. Fashion, make up and hair do by Bubah Alfian. Model: Tiara. Photo by Kristupa Saragih

It was a sunny day in Papuma, Jember, East Java. Dry season of June 15, 2011 brought a clear blue sky. It was simply great for outdoor shoot.

Finishing a full day fashion photography workshop in Jember as speaker, there was a spare time left before sunset. It was too good to be wasted. Some fellow photographers then organized an easy additional fashion shooting session in Papuma Beach. It’s a half an hour drive away from Jember to Papuma in the south.

The beach is rocky and hard windy. The hard splash could reach as high as 2-3 meters. But the sun was too friendly and too kind for photo shooting.

The Visitor. Fashion, make-up and hair-do by Bubah Alfian. Model: Diana. Photo by Kristupa Saragih

The Visitor #2. Fashion, make-up and hair-do by Bubah Alfian. Model: Diana. Photo by Kristupa Saragih

A local Jember fashion designer is an award-winning of Jember Fashion Carnival, Bubah Alfian. He supported the workshop previously that day with his wardrobes, make-up and hair-do. We brought him with some models along.

In tropical country, outdoor shooting is a challenge. The light changes pretty quick. Photographer needs to adjust the exposure everytime.

The Lure. Fashion, make-up and hair-do by Bubah Alfian. Model: Thalita. Photo by Kristupa Saragih

The Lure. Fashion, make-up and hair-do by Bubah Alfian. Model: Thalita. Photo by Kristupa Saragih

Fortunately, Bubah is a keen person with strong motivation to collaborate in photo work. The models were cooperative and easy to direct. They did not complain about anything even tough they had to climb up and down the rocks with everything on.

The lighting situation was tough, with high contrast and changes of exposure. I decided to go strobist with one flash Canon 580 EXII mounted in PocketWizard FlexTT5. It was triggered by PocketWizard MiniTT1 which was mounted on the hot-shoe of my Canon EOS 1D Mk III armed with Canon 17-40mm f/4L lens.

E-TTL compatibility of PocketWizard MiniTT1 and FlexTT5 helped a lot. In open area the exposure was either compensated +1 stop or no compensation. The flash needed to be compensated +2 to +3 stop in open area, and -3 stop in shady area. I put circular polarizing filter on to make sure the color saturation is adjusted and blue sky is darkened.

The Visitor #3. Fashion, make-up and hair-do by Bubah Alfian. Model: Diana. Photo by Kristupa Saragih

The Visitor #3. Fashion, make-up and hair-do by Bubah Alfian. Model: Diana. Photo by Kristupa Saragih

The shooting that day did not last longer than one hour. At 5 PM the sun hit the horizon which cut the contrast right away down and even lower to dark. We called it a wrap, and directly hit the seafood restaurant a few steps away from the beach for dinner.

We checked the pictures and everyone’s happy.

Among The Rocks #1. Fashion, make-up and hair-do by Bubah Alfian. Model: Tiara. Photo by Kristupa Saragih

Among The Rocks #1. Fashion, make-up and hair-do by Bubah Alfian. Model: Tiara. Photo by Kristupa Saragih


Gaby and The Smoke in Tondano

Surrounded. Wireless TTL flash in Tondano, North Sulawesi. Model: Gaby. Photo by: Kristupa Saragih
Surrounded. Wireless TTL flash in Tondano, North Sulawesi. Model: Gaby. Photo by: Kristupa Saragih

Surrounded. Wireless TTL flash in Tondano, North Sulawesi. Model: Gaby. Photo by: Kristupa Saragih

It was a beautiful day spent with Manado photography fellows, on the last weekend of June 2010. I was in the capital of North Sulawesi for attending Fotografer.net Gathering Series 2010. Manado fellows are so kind and they were very anthusiast to arrange a simple model photo shoot with me while I was visiting their hometown.

We went to Tondano, 30km away from Manado, the capital of Minahasa Region. Cool breeze and widespread rice fields welcomed us in this beautiful highland of North Sulawesi. Then it was just happenned for us to find harvesting time on a roadside.

Above dried rice straws and thick-wet mud we made some shots with Gaby, in a ricefield on the roadside of Tondano, Minahasa, North Sulawesi. Photo by: Raya

Above dried rice straws and thick-wet mud we made some shots with Gaby, in a ricefield on the roadside of Tondano, Minahasa, North Sulawesi. Photo by: Raya

Dried rice straws were everywhere. Some farmers started to burn some rice straw piles and rose some smoke. We pulled-over, geared-up and asked our model Gaby to walk into the smoke.

It wasn’t easy to step over dried rice straws. The piles are soft, above wet and thick mud. As we got closer to the smokes, oxygen decreased and the smoke hit our eyes just like tear gas.

I geared myself with Canon 1D Mk III body and 17-40mm lens. The area of shooting was narrow, and I wanted to keep close to the models to make sure she heard my direction. The wind was quite hard and the directions changed in minutes.

Sky was covered by cloud and created low-contast condition. I armed one unit flash Canon Speedlite 580 EX II with PocketWizard FlexTT5. To trigger it, PocketWizard FlexTT1 was slided into 1D Mk III hotshoe.

Photo shoot with Gaby among the smokes of dried rice straws in a rice field on roadside of Tondano, Minahasa, North Sulawesi. We couldn't stand the smoke that long, made some shots and pull everything out. Photo by: Regy Kurniawan

Photo shoot with Gaby among the smokes of dried rice straws in a rice field on roadside of Tondano, Minahasa, North Sulawesi. We couldn't stand the smoke that long, made some shots and pull everything out. Photo by: Regy Kurniawan

I wanted to step down the background 1-stop under the flash exposure on the model. As PocketWizard FlexTT1 and FlexTT5 supports Canon E-TTL system, it was easy for me to compensate the exposure -1 stop and keep the flash exposure normal.

We realized that we couldn’t stand the smoke that long. So we just made some shots, quickly evaluate them and made some other alternative shots from some different angles. Went back to our cars, we stepped again over the dried straws carefully, and called our short and simple photo shoot a wrap.

My Manado fellows and I simply browsed the pictures on the camera LCD. We were satisfied and so was Gaby. Shorthly after that, we hit the road again, back to Manado, to attend Fotografer.net members gathering later in the evening. Thanks to all Fotografer.net fellows in Manado, SPOT photographer.

Another fun was waiting for us.

Finally we called it a wrap. All Fotografer.net Manado fellows and I were satisfied, and so was Gaby. From left to right: Regy Kurniawan, Raya, Farid Wahdiono (Exposure Magazine), Michael Winerungan (stand), Achmad Bagenda (sit down), Dodi Sandradi (FN HQ), Fesix Suyudi, Surya Rachman, Santho Montu, Kristupa Saragih, Diandra Gabriela Nelwan (Gaby), dan Hernan Halim. Photo by: Palty Silalahi

Finally we called it a wrap. All Fotografer.net Manado fellows and I were satisfied, and so was Gaby. From left to right: Regy Kurniawan, Raya, Farid Wahdiono (Exposure Magazine), Michael Winerungan (stand), Achmad Bagenda (sit down), Dodi Sandradi (FN HQ), Fesix Suyudi, Surya Rachman, Santho Montu, Kristupa Saragih, Diandra Gabriela Nelwan (Gaby), dan Hernan Halim. Photo by: Palty Silalahi


Original post of the main picture above: Surrounded