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Revealing Venus in Tuscany - part 3 of 1 2 3 4

by Mark Laurie Published 01/10/2011

In Calgary we don't have an abundance of out door swimming pools with nice backdrops behind them. So it was a real joy to do my take on some classic pool approaches. By our standards the pool temperature was not bad but by contrast the air was so warm the water felt a lot chillier than it was, so actual submersion was something I was not able to convince the girls to try.

Not all images need to be pretty, although on the whole, that is my inclination. The image of the two models that has been grunged up is one of my favourites. It was an empty room we found with this slick spiral staircase going up. We put our Profoto lights up as high as we could get them with an umbrella, then did a slight mixture of ambient and flash.

That was the image before the disaster. With the lights up so high, the limit of the lightweight stands we could fit in our luggage got bumped slightly, the swaying snapped the middle connector bringing it down. Luckily it was umbrella first, so only minor damage. I really have to invest in Damian's portable light solution for trips like this.


Working with splashes of colours such as the black and white print with the coloured dress can bring an image to life. This was all window light, with a weak reflector. We did a wonderful series with the models and that light. Another window alcove that we mixed with some flash was the girl in the hat. The window is around the corner and in a bit.

Even when you are busy photographing models, the point of an event such as Revealing Venus is not to miss the images all around you. The picturesque castle shot became the gift image of choice for the Mayor of Cortona, and the manager of the Cultural Heritage sites.

We met a wonderful owner of an art gallery who graciously removed all his paintings and closed down the gallery for several hours allowing us to photograph in the gallery. The model on the pedestal was from the entrance. The main light is primarily from the sky; this is the courtyard, three stories down. We have a light with an umbrella opening up the shadows very gently. The other image has her sister, Nicole, in the owner's office chair, liberated from behind his desk. Again we are using window light with a kiss of fill from a large umbrella.

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1st Published 01/10/2011
last update 12/11/2019 13:27:13



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