Behind the scenes of an Outdoor Fashion Photoshoot

Erin Knitwear green ladies Aran trellis pull on Hat modelled by Naoimh Upfront Models

The Client – Erin Knitwear

Erin Knitwear is a clothing brand based in Co.Cork, Ireland. They specialise in fashionable hand-knits and accessories for Ladies, Men and Children, producing hats, caps, gloves, hand-warmers, scarves, bags and accessories in a range of styles, designs and colours. For this fashion photoshoot the client wanted to capture their current range of women’s products, these products included hats, headbands, gloves, hand-warmers, scarves and bags at an outdoor location in Cork. The main use for these lifestyle photographs would be for their website to support existing product photography.

Behind the scenes of a fashion photoshoot in Cork
Behind the Scenes of a fashion photoshoot in Cork.

What’s in my Camera Bag? – Camera Equipment

Camera and Lenses

Camera: Canon 5D Mkiii – I have used this lens since June 2016 and it has been an absolute power horse. I don’t see the need to upgrade to a mirrorless system yet, but having a lighter camera on long photoshoots would definitely be a nice luxury.

Lens: Canon 70-200mm f/2.8L ii, Canon 100mm f/2.8L and a Tamron 24-70mm f/2.8.

I always bring a selection of lenses to a photoshoot, this is to ensure there are no problems on the day or any unexpected scenarios that I can’t capture, for example a smaller space would require a wider lens. When planning for this outdoor fashion photoshoot I knew that my lens of choice would be the Canon 70-100mm f/2.8L ii, the reason that I chose this lens is the focal length is perfect for portraiture and it is tack sharp.

The long focal length on this zoom lens ranging from 70mm-200mm means that I can reframe easily without having to move the model. This lens also allows me to be at a substantial distance from the model, this makes the entire shoot much more comfortable for both parties and helps the model stay a little more relaxed. Lastly, the compression and subtle bokeh produced by the Cann 70-200mm f/2.8L ii is beautiful and very complementing to a subject. It’s important to understand how different focal lengths will distort a models features, for portraits a focal length between 50mm to 100mm is usually preferred amongst photographers, 85mm being the optimal prime portrait lens.

Canon 5D Mkiii and Canon 70-200mm

Lighting

With outdoor photoshoots the weather is always a concern and it can be very difficult to accurately predict future weather conditions in Ireland. The weather apps I use are; Accuweather, UAV Forecast and Met Éireann forecast to try and get an average of what to expect, I will usually confirm with the client again the day before the shoot, just in case conditions change drastically and we can’t shoot.

This photoshoot was carried out in the summer months, on a very clear, bright and sunny day. This can make photographing models in the outdoors quite tricky, so light modifiers were used to help control the lighting and the working environment. This would’ve been much easier if it was an overcast or cloudy day. We shot from 10am to 4pm so we had to move the light modifiers in relation to the sun, as it moved direction throughout the day.

Light Modifiers

Diffuser: Neewer 100x150cm 5 in 1. This was used to diffuse the harsh sunlight on the day and soften the main light source that was cast onto the model. The diffuser was mounted to light stands to hold it in place.

Reflector: Neewer 80cm 5 in 1. The white reflector was used as a fill light in relation to the main sunlight. This helped to highlight accents on the products and direct light to the model’s face, reducing hard contrast and shadows.

Behind the scenes of an Erin Knitwear Fashion Shoot
Behind the scenes of an Erin Knitwear Fashion Shoot. Model: Naoimh – Upfront Model Management.

Backup and Accessories

Accessories: Extra camera batteries, Hähnel Pro Cube charger , extra SD and CF memory cards, light stands, light stand clamps, bungee cords and weights to hold light stands in place. Masking tape and duct tape (You never know what might break and these can hold things together until the end of the shoot).

Laptop and Storage: MacBook Pro and Samsung portable SSD T5. I always bring my laptop to a photoshoot so I can back up my images on site as I’m shooting, or at the very latest just before I pack up and head home. I make 2 backups, one to my laptop and one to my external hard drive, this allows me to have a total of 3 backups including the SD/CF cards which I don’t format until my images are imported into Lightroom. Making sure that your images are backed up to at least 2 sources is vital, you don’t want to be in a position where you have to explain to a client why all of their images are lost.

Camera Settings

The camera settings throughout the majority of the Fashion Shoot stayed the same and all of the images were shot on Manual Mode, in Raw file format. The White balance was set to automatic.

I used the auto focus feature as it’s incredibly fast and accurate with the 5D Mkiii and 70-200mm, focusing for the eyes each time.

ISO:400 | Aperture: between f/5.6 and f/8 | Shutter Speed: 1/500th.

I used the Canon 70-200mm f/2.8L ii lens for all of these fashion photos, the focal length varied between 70mm and 100mm.

Final Product Lifestyle Shots

Erin Knitwear Charcoal Peak knit hat and hand warmers
Erin Knitwear Charcoal Peak knit hat and hand warmers worn by Naoimh – Upfront Models

Ladies fashion Hat
Erin Kniweat Ladies Fashion Hat modelled by Naoimh – Upfront Models
Erin Knitwear Red Headband modelled by Naoimh Upfront Models
Erin Knitwear Red Headband modelled by Naoimh – Upfront Models
Erin Knitwear navy bobble hat
Erin Knitwear Bobble hat modelled by Naoimh – Upfront Models

The Photoshoot Crew

Photographer: Shaunagh O’Connell
Assistant Photographer: Ciarán Foley
Model: Naoimh – Upfront Model Management

Working with Naoimh from Upfront Model Management was fantastic and I would highly recommend her for a photoshoot. She knew exactly how to pose for the camera, with very little extra direction needed and this kept the photoshoot moving along swiftly. Naoimh took the time to get to know the products she would be modelling and wasn’t afraid to add her own input on how they could be presented at their very best.

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