Sunday, November 18, 2012

chasing the sun

To finish the shop update for tomorrow I needed to take some pictures today so i prepped my highly professional setup in the front yard: floral velour folding chair from before i was born, mini camp table, neutral fabric, several glasses to hold bracelets, some random items to give size perspective (these pine cones are all over the yard) and a big candle holder to help with necklaces since my schedule, Amy's schedule and daylight have not matched up lately and the dress form experiment was an epic failure.
I shouldn't make fun of my little setup because as cobbled together as it is, I have been really happy with the pictures i've been getting for my shop; every picture currently on my Etsy page is straight out of camera except for being cropped square.
Also, i brought out all of my current stock that hasn't been photographed yet so that i could change my mind and add something to the update in case the shoot went really well.
And sunblock. This sunblock lives in my photoshoot box so if the lighting is suddenly perfect i don't have to lose anytime and i don't get burnt either.

This was all the more critical today as the sky was right on the line between partially cloudy and partially sunny.
mayhaps this is what they call broken cloud cover?
Luckily the clouds were moving pretty quickly so i didn't have to wait too long between cloud covers; of course the bursts of full sun were correspondingly brief.
To utilize the lighting as well as possible i worked a bit differently by actually staging several pieces at once during the cloudy moments so that as soon as the sun came out i could shoot multiple pieces by simply moving the table. It was a lot quicker to pick up the table and turn it so that the sun was falling on each item in turn than to completely stage one piece after another. With some forethought about which things could use different bases i was able to get more accomplished in a shorter time.
In fact it was working so well that during a particularly large cloud cover i tried to figure out a way to stage multiple earrings at once.  I only have the one wrapped holder so looking around the yard i decided to try using a tree.
The naturally broken bark of this species of tree (no, i have no idea what it is; something in the elm family?) presented plenty of places to hang earrings;
i just had to find enough of the correct shapes for multiple pairs on the sun-side of the tree.

It was right after taking this picture, during my happy dance celebrating my brilliance that i realized that i'd been shooting in VGA instead of 5M for the previous 30 minutes.
That means that all the planning might well have been for naught if the pictures are too small for the cropping process to show enough detail.
sigh... oh so not brilliance.
The only thing to do at that point was abandon the shoot and come inside to start editing to see what would need to be reshot before the light was totally gone.
And have a shot of tequila.
The good news is that it looks like i can salvage parts of the little pics and will only have to do some detail shots on 2 items and fully reshoot 3 items. The bad news is that it is now completely cloudy. But with everything else done for the update i can get up early, do the retakes in 15 or 20 minutes and have them cropped and uploaded before going to fTM Erin's house to babysit her adorable boys in the morning.
Plus, i had time to do this blog post, which i wasn't planning on doing until tomorrow afternoon so i guess it all worked out in the end.
Then again, doesn't it always?

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