Monday, February 16, 2009

Kitty Portraits

A few days ago I purchased a set of Elinchrom SkyPort radio triggers, a Wescott double-folding umbrella, a Justin clamp, and a Manfrotto Nano light stand. Naturally, that meant that I had to play with my new toys, and who better to try my first portrait lighting setups on than my cats? :)

They're not really camera shy, more camera curious; they like to investigate the gear when I pull it out, especially when I turn the lens in their direction.

So, I set up the light stand, flash, and umbrella, and waited. In case you're curious, I put the flash, with a hot-shoe adapter, on the ballhead on the Justin Clamp, bolted the Justin clamp onto the light stand, and used the clamp to hold the umbrella.

After setting the gear up I waited until the cats got over their curiosity and started napping. Loki took up his usual spot on the back of the futon, and I took the opportunity to get some shots. He didn't seem to be bothered much by the flash. I used my 105mm VR macro lens and my D300. The SkyPorts triggered the Metz flash flawlessly once I set it to manual mode, and gave me plenty of light.

Usually Calypso is the easier of the two to photograph, because she's more placid, but last night she was being either frisky, or in my lap. Even so, she did pause long enough to let me take a picture or two, and I realized that I should have turned down the power on the flash even more; her white fur is very white :)