Each time I have a first in photography it both inspires and humbles me. This time, the first was shared with me and my client. Her first pregnancy and my first maternity shoot. I approached working with my first maternity shoot with a large amount of planning, empathy and a desire to be very zen-like in my approach.
I kept things simple, listened to the couple and what they wanted and then made sure I had a simple but full kit that I knew how and when I would use. We planned out the time for the best light with some extra scouting and wardrobe time (don’t forget daylight savings time just happened that day!). All of that planning allowed us to get lucky with the light.
This was also the first time I scheduled and trained a PA to work reflectors and help the couple with wardrobe and all the things that really do help when you are just trying to make sure your lighting, settings, framing, etc. are right. Having just the right amount of gear in a nimble photo backpack (Lowepro DSLR Video Fastpack 250 AW) was key to being able to shift locations quickly to take advantage of a sunset peeking through clouds.
All I really brought up on the hill-side was my 5DMkIII, 70-200mm f2.8, 24-70mm 4.0, Flash with diffuser and a 32″ reflector set. I ended up using the silver and gold (checkered) reflector as the “golden sunset” was coming through high clouds that gave it a very blue cast. Inside was just a simple two umbrella light setup with a single back-light (too embarrassed to say just how cheap these are).
The take aways are…
- I love it when the natural light “hits” just right… being ready for it is a gas.
- I need better lights
- I need to remember to KEEP CHECKING MY SETTINGS!. Things change constantly, even indoors.
- Take more time to figure out white balance indoors. Yeah I can correct it in post, but…
- Preparation and pre-thinking a shoot is really key and feels great when it pays off.