SXSW ’18 Portraits: Courtney

Courtney, SXSW 2018 - Austin, Texas

Courtney, SXSW 2018 – Austin, Texas

I’m finishing this SXSW ’18 Portrait series today, with Courtney. Courtney is friends with Daevonnie, who I featured two days ago. Like that causal photo shoot, I took this picture on the second floor of The Belmont during the Vox Media event.

I think it’s instructive, at least for me, to compare this year’s portrait series to last year’s. I used the same camera, The Olympus PEN-F and the same lens, the Panasonic Leica 25mm f1.4 but there are differences too. Last year, I started experimenting with these black and white portraits. Many were out of camera JPEGs, using the Olympus “Mono Profile 2” mode.

This year, while I still used and framed the portraits using the built-in monochrome mode, all the featured photos are black and whites converted from RAWs. With over a year of using Capture One, my RAW processing software, I’ve become better at tweaking the subtle details that, I think, make a tangible difference.

I had the benefit of better light this year, since most were shot outside. Beyond that, I’m not sure if my portrait taking skills have improved. But I enjoyed creating this series and I think it was a worthwhile exercise.

It’s always a balancing act to either continue with a series and do the same thing for continuity sake or do something new and break new ground. I’m not sure if I have the balance right. But I think my subjects, techniques and style have shifted throughout the years. It’s all part of the quest for photographic growth.

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5 thoughts on “SXSW ’18 Portraits: Courtney

  1. Yes. Nice job. Excellent ‘tonality’ here. You’ve got me intrigued. I usually just shoot jpegs but am thinking of trying more raw with Capture One!

    1. Thanks for mentioning these presets, Mary. I’m sure some of my readers might be interested.

      Unfortunately, I use Capture One, instead of Lightroom. So it won’t work for me.

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