Peter M Howard ::

Soominch Fashion Shoot

30Dec2007/21May2008 [photography]

In which I am a fashion photographer

Have finally been able to put together an album (The Soominch Collection, November 2007) from a couple of fashion shoots back in late November. Liz completed her fashion degree at UTS this year; the entire final year is focussed around a collection and a show the uni hosts. Along with the show, they hold an exhibition of other final year design works, and they include a slideshow of photos of each of the fashion students' collections. So we had a couple of shoots to get together photos for that; Liz had a friend model the clothes for both shoots.

Outfit I - 4

First up we did a relatively simple shoot on Martin Place on the evening of 21November — simple in that we only had a single outfit, but it was complicated by the fact that we were shooting in available light, and it took us a while to find enough of that to get decent images. Eventually we set up next to Martin Place Bar, which entertained the patrons.

Outfit II - 1

The following weekend, on 25November, we did a 4+ hour shoot at Liz's restaurant in Eastwood (during the day, while it was closed, so we could move everything around). This one involved five/six outfits (the last one is a different top, but the skirt is repeated from the fifth). It was available light again, and the restaurant was pretty dimly lit, but being indoors and by day we were able to get some good lighting after a little experimentation. (For most of this shoot I had the exposure cranked up.)

Had to get the photos to Liz pretty quickly for the show, so didn't have time to do any processing on them — just converted the RAWs to JPGs and gave her a dump of the (around 500!) images. Since then I've been able to properly process the set. I first culled it down to a set of a couple hundred workable photos and messed with those. For a lot of them, I'd just pull the white balance down and they looked amazing — going from warm indoor light to a cool blue that really brings out little highlights — especially the skin tones and the makeup. For others I pulled lots of colour out, or did the opposite and really oversaturated some of the colours.

Outfit VI - 8

But I still had a couple hundred really good looking photos; I've only just been able to cull that down to the 32 in the album here. I tried to get a good range in there too — so all the outfits are on show. And there's a bias towards the final one because we did a couple of interesting thematic things. There are three in the album that are shot through Venetians, which worked really well — I especially love that she looks oblivious to the fact that she's being watched, and the couple where her eyes are covered do interesting things with the "male gaze". And I love the look of the final four, shot up against the wall with daylight streaming in from the left.

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