Portrait 4/52 - Cody

This week I enjoyed changing it up a bit. My nephew Cody turned 3 and had a super hero themed birthday party over the weekend. I thought it would be fun to have him get back into costume and take a few shots of him as Superman. He was into it for a few minutes and we got some fun shots:

Unfortunately I didn’t get the focus quite right on that one but I thought the expression and posture were just too good to pass up.

Tracie, Cody’s mom, had made these great cityscapes for the party that we were able to repurpose as backdops for the shoot. After the initial running shot, I got Cody to do some jumping for me:

 I had been anxiously awaiting a chance to try out a fog machine I had received at Christmas time. This seemed like the perfect shoot to add a little ambiance to.

 Of course with three boys around we couldn’t just shoot one! Cody’s brother Jake and my son Andrew got in on the lighting tests:

And Jake wanted in on the jumping action too!

Overall it was a fun shoot and even the subject(s) managed to have fun.


Technical Details

The main light was a 24” softbox at camera right with the flash set to 1/2 power. The rim/hair light was my typical 8x36 gridded strip box set at 1/4 power with a blue gel (to simulate moonlight) set behind the subject and to camera left. After reviewing the images on the computer I think that this light should not have been gridded and probably would have been better as an umbrella to really let the blue light spill around the scene. I also had a bare flash behind and to camera right set pretty low — I don’t think it had much effect. Camera settings were 1/160s, f7.1, and ISO 100.


My primary conclusion after this shoot is that the most important thing when photographing kids is to get them having fun. The pictures come out so much better than the stiff “cheese” smiles. I could have adjusted the lighting setup as I mentioned above. I wish that there had been more fog — it really seemed to dissapate quickly! And I really wish I had nailed the focus on the running shot. But otherwise I had fun and I’m happy with the pictures.

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