“Americas #1 Pinup” Cindy Margolis on location.
Find a great location at a beach (Or some place of your choice) and even though it’s going to be just a backdrop there are many things you need to look out for when shooting on location. Look out for tree’s or street lights coming out of the top of the model’s head this is a sure sign of an amateur photographer, also look to see if you can place the dark part of the background behind the lightest part of the model, like if she or he is blonde get the dark behind their head and if she or he is a brunette put the lighter part of the background behind the model’s head. If you look at my images of Cindy you can see her blonde hair is in front of the dark background and the light part of background is behind her body. This will help to make the model stand out. Next pick a shallow f stop that will put the background out of focus (8.1/2 on a 150mm lens) again this will help to separate the model from the back ground. I worked for a company once that wanted all the image to be in focus which looks like a snap shot that company were not on the ball with their imagery or should I just say they are morons. I have no issue with saying this as I know what I am doing after 30 years and I have never been one to hold back on my opinion when it’s the truth!
Once you have your view of the location and the model where you want them, next is to light it up. You can do these two ways, uses a reflector to push light onto your subject or use a strobe light! I think one of the easy ways is the reflector. Why because what you see is what you get. Now when you do use a reflector I would suggest that you open your f stop ½ of a stop for shadow detail. If you are shooting RAW you will be able to bring back the detail but do not overexpose your images or you will have some work to bring down the high-lights as they might get blown out this is not good.
One last thing is to work with the model on some pose’s, in my case Cindy knows what to do and when we started to shoot she would go though her reportage of pose’s till that moment when Cindy pulled her hair up and I could see the sunlight in her hair and that was it. Click we got it! It did not take long, about 20mins for that fantastic poster image which Cindy was paid a $1000
I did not have an assistant that day so it was just me and Cindy on this shoot. Makeup and hair had been done before we went to the location. That kept my outgoing cost down and profit up. If you are in the business of being a professional photographer it’s about making money and getting publish so you can show a new client that they are not taking a risk in using you for their next project. I laugh at some of the YouTube photographers who never show there publish work as they don’t have any. LOL