Sports Portraiture

Joined
Sep 1, 2015
Messages
1,245
Location
Burnley, UK
Real Name
Michael A. Sewell
Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)


Meet Joe Harrison. A gentleman who has just celebrated his 100th 100 break in snooker. (No, it's nothing like pool!)

I was asked by a local working men’s club to create the image, which would be framed and hung on the club wall.

Like a lot of snooker halls, the lighting is fairly dim, and this is accentuated by the overhead table lights. Here, the overhead lights were fluorescent tubes, and their colour temperature wasn’t particularly conducive to the atmosphere of the room. This was mainly due to the fact there were four tubes, and even without a colour meter, it was fairly obvious at least one of the tubes was a completely different colour temperature to the other three.

No matter, as I wanted to take full control of the lighting to create the atmosphere as I felt it should be. Just enough light to hint at the room, but almost all of the light on our main subject, Joe, with enough fall off to create that classic overhead triangle of light often seen in the promotional posters such as “The Color of Money”.

As there isn’t a vast amount of room above the table, the best way to recreate the light would be two light sources, one either side, and both tightly controlled. I used an ELB 400 with an action head connected to port B and firing through a horizontal stripbox with honeycomb fitted. It was set to fire at an output of 3.0. The stripbox was placed along the table edge (frame left) and about a foot above it, just in line with Joe’s head and shoulders. This allowed the light to illuminate Joe and that end of the table.

A second ELB 400 was set up in an identical manner on the opposite side of the table. Same height and attitude, and the same output. They were both angled downward toward the centre of the table.

Finally, I used a third ELB 400 and action head, again connected to the B port at 3.5. It was firing through an 80×80 folding softbox at a height of about six feet, with the box acutely angled down to fill the table top in front of Joe, and provide a lift to his face which otherwise would have been much darker due to the honeycombed stripboxes either side of him.

To be honest, it was very straightforward, and I was in and out of the place within 30 minutes or so.

1/125th sec ISO200 f5.6
 
Joined
Jun 2, 2015
Messages
1,361
Location
Scottsdale, Arizona
Real Name
Denny
Great shot. I have followed most of your previous postings and appreciate the time you take to explain your setups. You set the elevation at 6 feet which would put it about 2 - 2.5 feet above the table top surface but where was that third light box located in relationship to the subject?
 
Joined
Sep 1, 2015
Messages
1,245
Location
Burnley, UK
Real Name
Michael A. Sewell
Great shot. I have followed most of your previous postings and appreciate the time you take to explain your setups. You set the elevation at 6 feet which would put it about 2 - 2.5 feet above the table top surface but where was that third light box located in relationship to the subject?
Sorry Denny, my bad!

The third softbox, (the 80x80cm key light), was alongside me, to my immediate left. In fairness, it was almost overhead as I lent against the edge of the table.

You can just make out the smaller catchlight in both his eyes. The longer catchlight in Joe's left eyes (frame right) is from the stripbox.

You can also make out the light positioning on the snooker balls.
 
Last edited:
Joined
Jun 2, 2015
Messages
1,361
Location
Scottsdale, Arizona
Real Name
Denny
Sorry Denny, my bad!

The third softbox, (the 80x80cm key light), was alongside me, to my immediate left. In fairness, it was almost overhead as I lent against the edge of the table.

You can just make out the smaller catchlight in both his eyes. The longer catchlight in Joe's left eyes (frame right) is from the stripbox.

You can also make out the light positioning on the snooker balls.
Thanks for the clarification. I had noticed that second catch light in his left eye and thought it might be that 80cm key light but I thought I would ask just to be sure. I recently did an on site graduation shoot and due to a shift in weather which made our planned outside shoot impossible we had to move into the garage where I encountered a similar issue with the fluorescent lights. We had to get up to the ceiling and unplug them as just shutting off the wall switch extinguished all the lighting and I do not have modeling lamps so we had to leave the incandescent entry way light on. Thanks again!
 
Joined
Sep 1, 2015
Messages
1,245
Location
Burnley, UK
Real Name
Michael A. Sewell
I recently did an on site graduation shoot and due to a shift in weather which made our planned outside shoot impossible we had to move into the garage where I encountered a similar issue with the fluorescent lights. We had to get up to the ceiling and unplug them as just shutting off the wall switch extinguished all the lighting and I do not have modeling lamps so we had to leave the incandescent entry way light on. Thanks again!
A pretty good test for the nerves ;)
 

mcrosa

Mu-43 Veteran
Joined
Jun 26, 2013
Messages
243
Location
Miami, Florida
Real Name
Mike Crosa
Michael, great shot and I really appreciate your lessons. One question I have and that is the cue ball and if memory serves the six ball. Did you leave them purposely out of focus?
 

Cederic

Mu-43 Top Veteran
Joined
Nov 14, 2012
Messages
571
Location
Nottingham
One question I have and that is the cue ball and if memory serves the six ball. Did you leave them purposely out of focus?
White is the cue ball. Also in view are the yellow (2 points), black (7 points) and blue (5 points).

The bit that confuses me is where his right arm's gone and how he can cue straight from that angle. But since he's had a hundred centuries and my high score is under 30 I'm going to accept that he's probably getting it right.
 
Joined
Sep 1, 2015
Messages
1,245
Location
Burnley, UK
Real Name
Michael A. Sewell
White is the cue ball. Also in view are the yellow (2 points), black (7 points) and blue (5 points).

The bit that confuses me is where his right arm's gone and how he can cue straight from that angle. But since he's had a hundred centuries and my high score is under 30 I'm going to accept that he's probably getting it right.
In snooker, you pull the cue in tight against your body, to look down it.
You can see his right hand, although due to the shadowing, it has a similar hue to his shirt, and that may be why you overlooked it.
 
Links on this page may be to our affiliates. Sales through affiliate links may benefit this site.
Mu-43 is a fan site and not associated with Olympus, Panasonic, or other manufacturers mentioned on this site.
Forum post reactions by Twemoji: https://github.com/twitter/twemoji
Copyright © 2009-2019 Amin Forums, LLC
Top Bottom