How to make multiple exposure of model in one picture with different sharpness
We came up with an idea for this shoot in New York with a stylist Marissa Adele. Our aim was to submit the photographs to fashion magazines and try to get them published. It is a pretty common thing when a photographer or a stylist invite models, hair&make up artists, assistants, rent a studio and required props and arrange a shoot, putting their own ideas, skills and time in order to later offer the photographs to magazines instead of waiting to be commissioned (which is, considering the competition these days is almost impossible unless you have a pretty serious connections).
We decided to make something unusual using bright clothes that the stylist had in her collection which led me to the following lighting setup: for creatung multiple exposure I put a white background in the middle of large loft with white ceiling and walls using two high stands and put two Hensel 500Ws flash units with standard reflectors behind it. The lights stood behind the background facing the opposite directions, adjusted to the height of models head. White walls worked as huge reflectors and helped me in achieving an enveloping light around the model which emphasized the volume and bright colors of stylist's collection of clothes.
There was a huge chandelier hanging right in front of the model and I decided to play with the lights a little bit. I extended the exposure and the resulting photos were slightly blurry. I noticed that I can arrange these images in a nice sequence so I closed an aperture even more and reduced the amount of light reaching the model from my flash units. In the same time I was extending the shutter speed to 1 sec and further and getting the same exposure as before affected differently by both strobe and continuous light coming from he chandelier.
I was using a 210 mm lens and to make a full body shot I had to go pretty far back - (around 10 meters), luckily the loft was big enough for that. The model was relatively independent and my finger was busy on the shutter button, while she was dancing, jumping and fooling around with the camera. It took about 15-20 minutes for each set of clothes and had enough time to make 150-200 pictures with various sharpness and amount of continuous and flash light.
Later in post-production I combined the sequences of different moves from different pictures. I have to admit that it was equally challenging stage in terms of time and amount of work which also equired a lot of power from my computer. My Hasselblad H3D-II files with 31MP digital back are quite large and since I'm used to work with 16-bit TIFF files you can imagine how heavy a 10-layer 6000x10000 pixels Photoshop project like that is. Cursing my lack of the most powerful MacPro I brushed away the masks of each layer, changed the positions of figures to achieve smoothness and aesthetics of movement.
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