Jeff Hammond’s, a.k.a. flat5five on Flickr, makes fantastic street portraits, knows how to balance the frame, but what really makes me jealous is his use of light. As if he had an army of assistants running alongside him with huge golden & white reflectors & several speed lights bouncing the sun off of it for that nice, soft shadow and a golden highlight.
Jeff talks a bit about his technique in the discussion over a photograph posted below:
“I’ve received a few questions via email + one here asking about what equipment, processing, etc i used for this.. answer – nothing out of the ordinary.. it’s a [Nikon] d2x with a 12-24 at 16mm.. f/5.6.. focus is set at ~30″ which is the only way to start getting any sort of shallowness with that focal length.. processing is very minimal here – in lightroom, i bumped up the contrast some using the curves panel.. pushed the highs and pulled the shadows.. that’s it – about 45 seconds worth of work including the time it took to shoot it..
i’m not sure what ‘effect’ people are asking about but i assume what they are seeing is the lighting.. in which case, the answer is on the sidewalk/building behind him.. there’s two light sources (the sun & its reflection) coming through the trees in various sized beams — two of which happen to be converging on his head.. (notice the chair to the left of him shows a shadow opposite of the direction necessary to light the building on the right).”
Whew, that was simple — he just uses his brain! After all, you do need to do some thinking before spending $3,000 on d2X because no camera alone will do the job for ya. But you already knew that, didn’t ya?
For some awesome lighting techniques, dynamic compositions, incredible colors and more check the skateboarding folio on Jeff’s website .
All rights reserved © Jeff Hammond
More of Jeff Hammond’s photography on his website, jeff.emptyfortunecookie.com/folio.