A portrait from this morning. A model from twenty years ago dropped by...

I've shared a number of black and white photographs of Michelle with you over the past year or so. Most of them were taken between 1992 and 1994. She was astonishingly beautiful. Twenty something years later I think that she is even more beautiful. More subtle. More interesting.

We spent some time this morning catching up. Then we made some portraits.

I did a few things differently this morning, technically. To start with I used a set of Lowell VIP hot lights for my illumination. They are very small and inexpensive tungsten lights that my friend, Paul, no longer wanted. He dropped them by the studio last week. The lights are lamped with 250 watt bulbs.

I set up two four foot by four foot Chimera diffusion panels, side by side, with the panel closest to the camera angled to carry light across Michelle's face. I used a black panel to the opposite side to reduce room spill light and to make the shadows on the other side of her face deeper.

When I started shooting I was working with the Sony a99 and the new 85mm Rokinon lens but the focal length was too short for what I had in mind. I rummaged through a drawer and found my Hasselblad 150mm f4 lens and an adapter. The longer focal length seemed just right to me. Even wide open the older lens (made for medium format) still has enough bite for a lovely portrait.

I shot with the lens wide open, on a tripod.

Simple lighting. Simple tools. Gracious model. 


  1. Wonderful portrait. Such a captivating expression. And good idea to through in a Hasselblad lens for the gear geeks.

    1. Glenn, I'm shocked to hear that "gear freaks" would read my blog...

  2. Something wrong with calling such a beauty "a model from 20 years ago"….

    1. Perhaps should read: "A beautiful model with whom I last worked twenty years ago..."

  3. Stunningly beautiful woman. No fair that she looks as good now as she did 20 years ago!

  4. A beauty indeed! I don't know if you'r adverse to some modest touch ups, but that portrait is certainly deserving of a little more PP than Snapseed is capable of.

    The lighting (while fine), is exaggerating the darker shadows under, and crows feet beside, her left eye. A quick brush up with the healing brush, then evening out her squint with the Liquify tool in PS, does wonders at a 50% opacity on a second layer.

    OMG... I've been watching too many Scott Kelby tutorials ;-)


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