Brooklyn is a place in NY that relates to iconic images; primarily represented in photography and filmmaking. Besides the Brooklyn Bridge, I was always attracted to stoop steps to apartment buildings. When I met with Grace for this portrait session at the High Street Station, we began almost immediately after finding one in a street corner.
A place like Brooklyn is so much fun that I even forgot about the bridge for a while! Nearly every single building, street corner or nearby park has something to offer. Lucky for me, Grace has an excellent sense of style, and her looks made the process of this shoot even better. We made pictures in public basketball court, a restaurant's courtyard not far from an open terrace, St Ann's Warehouse and Brooklyn Bridge Park until past sunset.
The more I photograph, the more I become intrigued by technical setbacks that ultimately drags me onto another step. However, it bothers me when I can't provide a consistent quality of work to someone who's given me some of their time. Fortunately for me, I'm very lucky to team up with another creative individual like Grace, who understands the struggle and sees beyond the surface.
Things I Learned:
Stick to the equipment I know:
I was recovering from a health issue by the time of this photoshoot, and my energy level was not as good as I wanted. For that reason, I chose to travel light and bring my street camera paired with a telephoto and wide-angle adapters. Primarily, I use my compact Fuji X100F to zone focus and be discreet. When it comes to doing portrait sessions, the focus confirmation, along with the heftiness of my DSLR makes taking portraits a lot smoother. So, looking back, bringing my DLSR with only one lens and a diffused speedlight would have been all I needed for consistent results.
Shutter Speed, Aperture, and ISO ratios:
The struggle is real when it comes to embedding the shutter triangle in my brain. One moment I realize I have it figured out and the next I end up getting dark or blurry shots. Recently, on photowalk long after this photoshoot in Brooklyn, I began to understand that all I need is change one thing rather than three. In the case of these portraits with Grace, a shutter speed of about 160/sec with a diffused speedlight at 1/8 power would have been a good starting point to get sharper focus and shoot on a good pace. With an ISO of 400 while adjusting my F-Stops from F11, F8, to f5.6 as it was getting darker; is likely to be my settings next time I'm out late doing street portraits.
Leave Room for More
I'm getting passed the idea of doing it all in one single session. Although is very challenging, I want to stick to that one lens rule for a while. Not only it will help be more attentive to composition, but will also make me more alert to camera settings.