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Secrets & Scandals: Sneak Peek #1

And it's Light4theLord here today, ready to give a few more secrets away on my newest project that was announced in the Looking Ahead post! Essentially, you're getting a promo photoshoot in here as well, so enjoy.

Allow me to introduce to you one of our stars of this upcoming show. Welcome Elly Cole as she plays the co-starring role of... Her highness...

Princess Jacquelyn Sophania Carales of the fair but torn land of Nuvoria. I have Miss Elizabeth here today for a few questions about her new role - and make sure to ask questions in the comments for the stopmotion interview!
Elizabeth, what do you like best about the character of Jacquelyn? Well, the character herself... absolutely nothing! laughs But I have to admit I absolutely loved dressing up. Her gowns are so insanely fancy - the wardrobe designers have done an amazing job! And the jewelry and hairstyles and everything is just... stunning. Plus, who doesn't like doing tons of photoshoots? hehe... you'll see anot…

the process of a photoshoot - tips & tricks!

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Hi everyone, and welcome back! Today's post is one I'm rather excited about - I'm going to, essentially, walk you through what I do for a photoshoot which can be rather extreme and over the top!
 
It'll be a behind-the-scenes type thing, and I'll share my little tips and tricks and then show you the final pictures (just a few, not all the ones I took XD) at the end!
 
Let's start with a little photography intro.
 
I currently use a T2i Canon Rebel (my dad got it in 2013 and lets me use it - thank you, Tatay!) and I've been doing doll photography for just over two years. My photography has changed so much. Insanely. XD I just started using the manual setting and manual focus and guys, it is totally worth it! 0_0 it made SUCH a huge difference!
 
But now, moving onto the very brief basics.
 
THE FIVE  BRIEF BASICS OF DOLL PHOTOGRAPHY
 
1. Lighting
This is so important guys. So. important. Shadows in photos are awful, and if the light is hitting the doll's face, it's not any better. XD Plus, if you can't even hardly see anything in the photo - why bother?! Too dark, too bright - those are the main problems.
 
But then you have highlights and shadows and contrast and natural light vs. unnatural light (indoor photography)... so it's important to know where the best spots and the best times (of day) to take pictures. For me, it's the front yard around golden hour(s) - the hour(s) where the sun is setting (or about to set).
 
2. Subject
Your doll is your subject, obviously, and she needs to look good. A complete and cute outfit (including accessories or layers, and most of the time shoes - unless it's a barefoot outside one like this photoshoot), nice hair (it doesn't have to be insanely complicated, just please brush it!), and a smile. ;) The way she's posed also counts - no one likes seeing a doll just stand there with her arms dangling. Be creative! The most important thing, though, is that she looks at the camera (which I have personally failed at!).
 
3. Surroundings
You'll want your surroundings to look nice. And preferably doll sized - no giant tires about to crush her head or a human chair nearby! Find a place with good scenery and mark it mentally to come back at other times!
 
4. Props
Props make the picture. No. joke. For this mini-photoshoot (it wasn't as long as my normal ones, which average about 80-120 pictures) I used stuffed animals. *cheers* Find tons of little stuff. It's rather addicting. XD
 
5. Perspective
And perspective makes a giant difference. You can take so many different shots from different perspectives of the same pose! I *cough* have gotten down in the middle of the road and laid there. More on that later.
 
ALRIGHT WE'VE COVERED THAT!
 
Now, onto the behind-the-scenes!
The very first thing I do is set up the scene. This time, my subject is Mia (complete with AG shorts, a tshirt made from a baby onesie, and an AG hoodie wrapped around her waist), the surroundings consist of nature - which is perfect, and the props are the puppies!
 
The biggest thing ever that has changed my photography is a fifty-cent white posterboard that reflects the light. Incredible! After setting up the scene how I like it, I figure out where I want the 'reflector'.
And then, of course, since I'm still a little new to manual photography, I have to figure out the lighting. Once I get the aperture and the ISO and shutter speed just right, I'm ready to snap away!
 
 
And then she falls over. *facedesk*
#whoops
 
Well, we'll try again.
 
By this time, I'm being eaten alive by mosquitoes *facedesks again* because I unwisely wore shorts and a t-shirt outside in the evening. Baaaaaaad idea.
 
But after all of those factors are finished... snap away!
 
Ready to see the product?
 
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THE FOLLOWING PHOTOS (until otherwise noted) ARE ENTIRELY UNEDITED, SHOT IN MANUAL, AND TAKEN WHILE CONSIDERING THE FIVE BASICS.
photo #1
 
I love how the little puppy makes all the difference - if it wasn't for him cocking his head and looking up at Mia, the photo would be totally different and not as adorable.
And yes, I got down on the ground for this. XD
 
photos #2 & #3
I love the composition of these photos. Three puppies is the perfect number, don't you think? I had to rummage through my brothers' stuffed animals in the attic to find two of them. :P
The hoodie tied around her waste also adds a little dimension and gives it just a little something more than just shorts and a t-shirt.
Both of these photos are not to my standards - her eyes are way too dark. I could've fixed this with editing (and I did try, and it was pretty nice) but I wanted to show you the raw product (which is what I normally do).

photo #4
I loved the way Mia was just standing there with her hands in her pockets, so I snapped a closer one as well.
It's almost as though Honey is trying to see if there are any treats in there!
photo #5
Oh dear. Mia really must have treats in her pockets! Who can resist that adorable little puppy face?
photo #6
I have to say I'm not particularly fond of this photo - especially since the lighting is off and her eyes look like little brown holes. And her eyes are green. If it hadn't been cloudy, the reflector would've fixed that... but it's okay. Practice makes almost perfect!
 
 
photo #7
Last, but certainly not least - it's my favorite - is this photo that I took in the street.
The lighting is nice and bright, and you can see her eyes a lot better in this one.
The subject is posed in an interesting manner, and she's almost looking at the camera. XD
The surroundings are also pretty fun - I mean, who doesn't like walking barefoot across the street?
The props are following her in the same three pairing as before, and I really am pleased with the way they're trailing after her.
The perspective is ground level.
Very ground level. XD I was laying in the middle of the street for this one. Yes. Laying in the middle of the street. And what would happen in that one little moment that I'm out there but... our neighbor drives up. *facewhacks*
Neighbor: "Were you... laying in the street?"
Me: "Um, uh, yes! Heh.. anything for photos!" *holds up Mia and armful of puppies and reflector and camera*
Neighbor: *raises eyebrows and slowly nods* "Of.. course."
Me: "Have a nice day!" *turns and goes*
 
Even better is when I did another photoshoot (which you'll see next month as part of the big lead up to the reveal of the secret project!) just about ten minutes later.. and it happened again. Of all the times I was in the middle of the road again, the same neighbor had to drive by. XD XD XD Just strange looks this time, don't worry.
 
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Of course, editing can help. And I've been trying my hand at it. I just am not too terribly pleased with the way it turns out.

This one was pretty nice, but I didn't like it as much as the vertical one above. (also, I mainly just cropped out the reflector which was showing)
 
And this one was originally way too dark but I liked the background - manual focus and setting, y'all... - and so I just worked with her eyes a little. Thoughts?
 
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I'm hoping that was semi-interesting to read. ;) And also hopefully, you got some ideas and tips out of it! What inspires me to take photos is scrolling through instagram. ;) Karaleels is incredibleeeee! I could spend all day scrolling there!
 
Let me know which photo and which tip was your favorite in the comments below!
 
~ Light4theLord
photographer of the stars



Comments

  1. Ahhh these photos are so cute! I love all your tips, so I really can't pick a favorite. ;) Just to clarify, what exactly does the white posterboard do? I've always wanted to use one in photos but I never know precisely the effect it makes. XD

    You.. lay... in the road to take photos. Interesting. XD XD I was taking some pictures of Mimi on the other side of the road, by our mailbox, and I legit lay in the grass until I was at eye level with the bugs just to get that perfect shot. Then our neighbor just *happened* to slooooooooowly drive by... I hopped up and stood there innocently, pretending to get the mail even though the mailbox was empty. Oh, the lengths we go for photos...

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  2. I love these photos so much! The concept is so creative, and Mia looks so good! I've also just started playing around with manual focus and settings, and it's a little bit overwhelming! What lense do you use for your photos? All of these photos turned out so good, and I love the bokeh!
    ~Reynaxxx

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    1. Thanks! I'm really happy! Ooh, congrats on venturing out into a whole new world! I actually watched several videos on it... I think it was from this place (in case you wanted to see some of them) https://shultzphotoschool.com/

      Eek, I actually don't know what lens I use! I'll have to check when I can get to the camera! ;)

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    2. Okay, I still don't know exactly what lens I use XD but it's a Japanese brand... according to my dad (and it's his camera, so he should know XD).

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    3. Finally figured it out with my dad's help - Sigma 18-250 mm!

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  3. Mia is so cute-and her little dogs, too! XD XD, I have so had similar conversations when taking doll photos. One time I was hanging upside down in a tree and a woman and her kid came by and this kid said ''Mommy, why is she hanging upside down?'' and his mom looked at me and I smiled and waved. Awkward....
    ~Natalie

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    1. Aww, thanks! Yesssssss!! It's so awkward sometimes!! Just 'wave and grin and pretend you don't look really dumb as you try not to fall out of the tree' ;)

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  4. Great tips! Ah yes I love Karaleels!! I actually got to meet her about a year ago! :)
    <3Katherine

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    1. Oh my goodness, seriously?! That had to be SO super cool!!

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  5. Outstanding! Thank you for the tips and tricks ideas.
    How did you get her to lean? And balancing her stride while crossing the street? More tips on that please!
    ~Xyra

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    1. You're very welcome! I love learning from others and sharing what I've learned!
      I made sure she was balanced and standing before I moved her waist/torso just a bit and then evened it out again. And the striding one was so insanely hard I'm still not exactly sure how I did it. It took forever, that's all I know! XD I had to move her several times to make sure she was balanced, and then she'd almost topple and I'd have to lunge out and catch her so she wouldn't get scratched up XD

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