Hi Lucas, i noticed you really shoot a lot and select fantastic pictures from the shoot. How do you treat the pictures before narrowing down or before giving a ranking to the photos. I mean do you look trough all pictures from a shoot unedited and than do your selection for the best ones from the unedited photos or do you correct exposure and using some adjustmenst (whitebalance etc.) before narrowing down or ranking more than 500-1000pics?
After importing, I batch adjust all my raw pics to a basic black&white in order to review them; this was taught to me early on, with the idea that removing the color removes distractions, and you can concentrate on the most important things: light, shadow, and tones.
From there, I’ll usually do what’s known as “contrast selection”, which is, I’ll put up 10 pictures at a time, and I’ll mark whichever specific image my eye drifts to natively; this was not a process I invented or anything, but after learning about it, I saw its efficiency and adopted it into my selection workflow. The idea is that you go with your immediate gut reaction as to what image/composition is the strongest to you at first glance. This has its pitfalls, however, because what a photographer deems as a strong image, may not be what an art director or editor sees as the best fit for what they want/are looking for. So, it can be a delicate process.
After I narrow it down to 50-70 pics, I will do a basic color grading/adjustment pass to get in the ballpark of what will be the final look of the series. From there, I’ll make another round or two of selections, this time with a little more of a discerning eye, trying to find the balance of the right composition/lighting/model pose, in combination with doing the clothes justice (if there are clothes).
On average, it’ll take me about 45 minutes to sift through and narrow down the 15-25 pics I’ll seriously be working on for a test shoot (which don’t ever involve heavy editing/retouching). If it’s a real gig, I’ll only edit 1-2 pics per look, for which I’ll spend quite a bit longer time retouching.
What lights did you use for the black and white shoot you posted?
The one I just posted with the big group? I used a single Profoto D1 monolight with the Profoto Magnum reflector, and a Manfrotto super-boom, along with some white v-flats. The key is getting the light up high enough and farther away, so it lights the entire group (relatively) equally.