Drink and Click Portrait: Kim and Seven

Kim and Seven, Drink and Click Portrait - Austin, Texas

Kim and Seven, Drink and Click Portrait – Austin, Texas

I went to two Drink and Clicks in December but haven’t posted any of the portraits that I often create at these events. Kim and Seven where at both, and I made this portrait on December 21st. It was a cheerful time just before Christmas and we expected a small gathering, but to our surprise, we had a lot of photographers and models. The warm glow and festive holiday lighting in the background captures the mood.

As I usually do, I shot with my Olympus PEN-F with the Panasonic Leica 25mm f1.4 in black and white mode. The resulting contrasty JPEG black and white was OK, but a bit flat. I thought the color version had a lot of potential and the richness would create a warm holiday glow, so I did some post processing in Capture One. Here’s a quick description of what it took to create this image.

There was a weak continuous light to the right which aided the dismal lighting situation. Dim lighting, which is not unusual for a bar, necessitated me to shoot at ISO 1600, f1.6, 1/20 of a second and I added a whole stop of exposure compensation. Certainly not text-book portrait shooting conditions, but my previous experiments creating low light portraits helped.

The off camera lighting, mixing with the ambient light created some unpleasant color temperature variations. I used Capture One’s local color tools to remove the green cast from Seven which nicely color balanced the entire scene. I opted for a warm and rich portrait and I adjusted the kelvin and tint settings, along with a slight curve and a host of other post processing tweaks.

I’m guessing that all the post processing effort will go largely unnoticed, if I didn’t mention it. Which is the way it should be, of course. Low light performance, in body image stabilization and sophisticated post processing can do a lot these days. If I were a professional portrait photographer, I would certainly leave less to chance, perhaps lighting things in a more classic way. But as an enthusiast just having fun, it’s nice to push the envelope.

Kim and Seven, Drink and Click Portrait - Austin, Texas

Just when I was happy with the portrait, on a lark, I did a black and white conversion. Now I don’t know which I like better, so I’m showing both.

I have a fair number of blog readers who seem to like black and whites, so I know which they’ll probably prefer.

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5 thoughts on “Drink and Click Portrait: Kim and Seven

  1. What I’m about to say is purely personal. The black and white is too blocked up in the dark areas and too blown out in the highlights, especially the right model’s face. Black and white film has a longer exposure latitude than black and white digital, even when film is pushed, and a gentler exposure curve. I shoot the same gear you shoot but I’m seldome satisfied with its black and white results, especially when the ISO climbs into the four figures.

    The color version is definitely more pleasing to my eye to look at, as the light modeling across both subjects faces is clearer. The bit of color in their clothing is also appreciated. I believe the color version is much superior to the black and white.

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