A MODERN DAY PIRATE - PORTRAIT
I have always wanted to do an apothecary type of photograph. I started doing my research on this particular style of portrait and I came across an inspiring photograph done by Apothecary 87. This image blew my mind! It inspired me do something epic and create something unique, fresh and timeless. I started to look for a subject but couldn't find anyone to pull off the look. Just recently, I walked into a sandwich shop in Vaughan, Ontario called Bevi Birra. I was ordering lunch and this guy walks in; Max. I looked at him and I swear he probably thought I was checking him out. Not going to lie, I was. He had the perfect look, beard, hairstyle and just looked liked a modern day pirate to me. I started talking to him and asked him if I could buy him a beer. One thing lead to another and I told him I have a photo studio and would love to photograph him. He thought I was crazy! After I showed him some of the work and what my vision was for this image, he agreed to the shoot.
After he agreed, I continued to do more research and started collecting my props to build the set. I travelled to antique shops, flea markets, and thrift stores to pick up all of the stuff I needed. A few hundred dollars later, I had what I needed to complete the look. After several hours of rearranging the studio, I was finally happy with how things were looking. Here are just a few of the props I had picked up.
Once I was happy with the way things were looking, I started doing some test shots. I setup lights, rearranged them, put grids and snoots on them, layered my set with coloured gels and starting getting into a vibe.
It's always a good idea to build your lighting setup one light at a time. I usually start off with getting the right exposure from my key-light. In this case, it was the beauty dish. Once I'm happy with the exposure, I start to add my other lights, turning off the key light.
My gear list for this shoot was somewhat simpler from some of my other setups recently. I shot this with a Nikon Z6, and a Nikon 35mm 1.8s. I have always been a prime shooter and often do my portrait sessions with an 85mm. This was probably one of the first portrait sessions I did with a 35 strictly. For lighting, I used primarily Godox products for this shoot. I had an AD300 flash shooting through a beauty dish, a speedlite with the Magmod Grid on it and another speedlite as a rim light with a snoot. I had one more speedlite just outside of frame with green gel on it to give it that glow.
Some of my favourite shots from the shoot!
I couldn't be happier with the way these turned out. It was so much fun creating this look with Max and for Peter James Co. There's a lot to learn from this experience and that's the best part of being a photographer! You get to create art, make dope photographs and learn how to be better next time.
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