Lights Night with John Gardner

Members of Wakefield Camera Club kicked off the New Year by welcoming back John Gardner for a ‘Lights Night’. John, a Life Member and great supporter of the club, is a locally based Professional Photographer.

Typically on a club Lights Night John would bring a selection of his lighting equipment together with a model or two and give members the chance to work with different setups and techniques. It is always a fun evening with many members capturing competition worthy images.

Unable to meet at the club house John provided a Lights Night with a difference. John has started working with video and has been equipping his studio and kit bag to be able to record some of his  portrait shoots and to venture into the world of videography.

Always keen to share his approach and techniques, the first part of the evening started with the showing of his first photoshoot video of him working with a model for a portfolio shoot. It was very good and showed some of the behind the scenes work that goes into setting up the lights, adjusting the sets and directing a model.

John then took one of the images from the shoot and showed his workflow which included folders in Lightroom for Masters, Rejects and Complete and some initial adjustments. He then takes the images into Photoshop where he will remove any blemishes, use a plug-in to help with skin tones, select the model to drop in new backgrounds and finish off with some dodging and burning to bring out the detail and add depth to the image. The images are often finished with a light vignette before exporting as jpg for sharing and distribution.

After a short break John took an image from an earlier shoot to demonstrate the technique he uses to blur the background to create a dreamy ‘shot with an expensive fast lens’ look.  He makes it all look so simple which belies the hours of practice and years of experience.

John provided an interesting and entertaining evening and we look forward to the next time we get to spend an evening with John Gardner. You can contact John and see more of his work on his website.

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