The Naked Photographer - The Photography Show

Yes you did just read that right. I did say the Naked Photographer. 

So I've just given my first public photography talk at The Photography Show at the NEC in Birmingham to about 300 people called The Naked Photographer. 

The whole idea behind the talk was that I was gonna do a totally improvised shoot. I'd been struck by how prepared and how much equipment all  the other speakers had. So as I like to do things differently, I thought it may be fun to go on stage and do a shoot...........without having anyone to shoot or any camera to shoot with. 

I was totally wrong, it wasn't fun in any way. I was so nervous, but thankfully it worked and I've had some amazing feedback from people who attended. So a massive thanks to everyone who helped me out / supported me / didn't laugh me off stage.

The whole idea of the shoot was to show people what was possible with minimal equipment and a bit of imagination. So check out the photos here:

  So first up is the test shot of part of the crowd. I wanted to test that the Nikon D5500 that I managed to borrow (of the blond girl in the front row on the left) worked and how it looked on the screens which were about a stop over exposing.

 

So first up is the test shot of part of the crowd. I wanted to test that the Nikon D5500 that I managed to borrow (of the blond girl in the front row on the left) worked and how it looked on the screens which were about a stop over exposing.

  This is Ben who very kindly saved me and volunteered to come on stage and be photographed by me. This was shot with natural light. I wanted to show how I tend to start a portrait shoot from afar to get the subject comfortable in front of camera before I come up close.

 

This is Ben who very kindly saved me and volunteered to come on stage and be photographed by me. This was shot with natural light. I wanted to show how I tend to start a portrait shoot from afar to get the subject comfortable in front of camera before I come up close.

  Next shot with natural light was an up close head shot.

 

Next shot with natural light was an up close head shot.

  Same shot as before, but using the pop up flash. I wanted to show that it's not this awful flash that we think it is, and this is a slight fashion / Terry Richardson / point and shoot look to the image.

 

Same shot as before, but using the pop up flash. I wanted to show that it's not this awful flash that we think it is, and this is a slight fashion / Terry Richardson / point and shoot look to the image.

Same shot as before, but with the white balance changed to Incandescent or light bulb. To make the daylight balanced flash look blue. I wanted to show that you can have a bit of fun with the settings in your camera.


Same shot as before, but with the white balance changed to Incandescent or light bulb. To make the daylight balanced flash look blue. I wanted to show that you can have a bit of fun with the settings in your camera.

  Demonstrating bad flash technique. So two things are happening here. I wanted to show a trick for eliminating distracting backgrounds. Just get down low and use the sky / ceiling as a background. As well as showing how most people shoot flash, with a bright subject and a dark background.

 

Demonstrating bad flash technique. So two things are happening here. I wanted to show a trick for eliminating distracting backgrounds. Just get down low and use the sky / ceiling as a background. As well as showing how most people shoot flash, with a bright subject and a dark background.

  So this is the same shot as before, with just the ISO increased to match the exposure of the environment. I wanted to show that having a high ISO and the pop up flash can actually produce some nice results.

 

So this is the same shot as before, with just the ISO increased to match the exposure of the environment. I wanted to show that having a high ISO and the pop up flash can actually produce some nice results.

  At this point, i'd managed to borrow a flashgun from someone else in the audience as I wanted to do a little On Camera Flash. As the ceiling was too high to bounce off of, I thought i'd bounce the flash of the wall and get a nice soft side light.

 

At this point, i'd managed to borrow a flashgun from someone else in the audience as I wanted to do a little On Camera Flash. As the ceiling was too high to bounce off of, I thought i'd bounce the flash of the wall and get a nice soft side light.

  Again the same shot as before, with side lit, bounced soft flash, but the opposite as earlier. I reduced the ISO to reduce the exposure of the environment, to make the background darker.

 

Again the same shot as before, with side lit, bounced soft flash, but the opposite as earlier. I reduced the ISO to reduce the exposure of the environment, to make the background darker.

In this shot, i'd zoomed the flash to make a concentrated area of light in the middle of the frame. 


In this shot, i'd zoomed the flash to make a concentrated area of light in the middle of the frame. 

  A little Off Camera Flash action. I didn't have any triggers to fire the flash Off Camera and the camera that I borrowed was a more basic Nikon DSLR so it didn't have the facility to use the Nikon CLS system to fire flashes. However I got round that by setting the pop up flash on the camera to Manual power and the lowest setting, so it wouldn't effect the exposure much. I then set the flash to fire in slave mode, so when it saw another flash it would fire. This enabled me to do some simple Off Camera Flash with borrowed equipment.

 

A little Off Camera Flash action. I didn't have any triggers to fire the flash Off Camera and the camera that I borrowed was a more basic Nikon DSLR so it didn't have the facility to use the Nikon CLS system to fire flashes. However I got round that by setting the pop up flash on the camera to Manual power and the lowest setting, so it wouldn't effect the exposure much. I then set the flash to fire in slave mode, so when it saw another flash it would fire. This enabled me to do some simple Off Camera Flash with borrowed equipment.

  And lastly, I thought i'd have a bit of fun with the big logo that was at the back of the stage and using Off Camera Flash. So I but the flash on the floor and got Ben to stand in front of it, so that he wasn't lit by the flash, but the wall was. 

 

And lastly, I thought i'd have a bit of fun with the big logo that was at the back of the stage and using Off Camera Flash. So I but the flash on the floor and got Ben to stand in front of it, so that he wasn't lit by the flash, but the wall was. 

Well there you go. I looked at the times of the shots in Lightroom and it was 17 and a half minutes from the first shot of Ben to the last.

We managed to shoot with:
Natural Light 
Pop Up Flash
On Camera Flash
Off Camera Flash

So, I hope I got the message across that you can work quickly and you can be creative with minimal equipment. 

It's not about the equipment it's about the image.