I do different kinds of work for different clients, and often spend my working days sitting at the computer captioning, key-wording and removing dust spots from images. Quite dull stuff. So sometimes its just a treat to do a nice simple shoot. The key ingredients? One soft box, one close friend, her 2-month old son.
The set-up couldn't have been simpler. I had the camera on manual and measured the exposure with my light-meter, which goes way back to my days of working with a Hasselblad. But these I shot digitally on a second-hand Canon 5DS which I bought back in January. Shooting digitally makes for lots of quick shots (at least as fast as the light will re-charge) and also ease of printing for the client.
I shot in colour and used Photoshop adjustments to convert to black and white. Adjusting the different colour channels separately allowed me to hold the strength of the dark tones in his blue eyes and tone down a bit of redness in his skin. It would have been possible to make the image more high-key but in fact I wanted a bit of bite to the darks as I think it makes for a stronger image. The client has the option of using the colour version instead but I think there's something wonderful about monochrome for portraits.
Anna Watson: photographer, parent, juggler