Peru is a beautiful dream in so many ways. The ocean, the desert, the lush highlands, and then of course, the magical city of Lima. So much elegance, and beauty everywhere, sometimes ornate, sometimes stark. As a photog, it’s exhausting, ’cause you want to shoot, you know, everywhere.
Claudia Maria, pictured above, is one of the people you love to work with, as she simply owns the camera as soon as she steps in front of the lens. Her look, her gown, matches the historically gorgeous main district of Lima, resplendent with architecture from long ago. These venues are invitations to put your camera to your eye.
So, here’s the thing. We just ran this picture on our Instagram account, and there were some questions about the lighting. In contrast to the intricate beading on her dress, and the nighttime allure of the picture, the lighting is dead bang simple, pedestrian really. Beauty combo, over and under, two Nikon SB-910 Speedlights. Lastolite Ezybox HotShoe softbox, with the white interior, giving the light a little smoothness, as opposed to the snap of a silver inside. You can see the upper is unfettered, open front, while the low light has a fabric grid, containing the spill. Tried and true C-stands. SB910 units, with SD-9 battery packs, triggered wirelessly with a flash commander at camera. Sounds old school now, in this age of radio TTL.
Certain adjustments were made, as you can see in the banner photo. An apple box for height. (As if she needed any more, given the fashion shoes!) Slow shutter, so Gitzo Systematic tripod for the camera. Nikon D810, fitted with a Nikkor 70-200mm, at 2.8, 1/30th of a second, ISO 400. Shot on aperture priority. Flashes were adjusted via TTL here and there, and I might have used manual values once I got things dialed in. Can’t really remember.
But, I do remember Peru, fondly. Wonderful people. The crew at La Casa Films. Pizza by Raffi! The fact that I ate an entire red pepper in a bar at Lima and thought I had ingested a flame thrower into my throat. The ceviche. The beer. The memory of running off a cliff with a lawnmower engine and a large fan tied to my back for beach aerials. Need to go back there.
A fun BTS video from the adventure…
I was thinking of using this one, though instead, but at the end of the day, it just lacked a little, well, a lot, of, well….everything. :-))))
So….elegant light for an elegant lady. But at its core, super simple. Thanks for the questions on Instagram! More tk….