Well, I finally got (I think) a good portrait for my LF class. My daughter is taking a continuing ed portrait painting class at her school on Saturdays, taught by her teacher, Michael Pesselato. I asked him if I could take his portrait for my class and he graciously agreed. Mr. Pesselato is an accomplished artist and art scholar. He is also a wonderful and dedicated teacher and has helped my daughter grow as an artist.
During his class I set up my 8x10" camera in the studio, found a composition and a place in that composition for Mr. Pesselato. The room was lit fairly well but not enough for large format portraiture. I don't like strobes and don't understand them so I prefer hot lights. They had a couple of old Smith Victor reflectors so I used them to add a little light to Mr. Pesselato. Even with that I had to shoot wide open (f/9 on my Fuji 300 Apo) at 1/8 of a second on TMax 400. Thankfully, Mr. Pesselato is not a "swayer" and stood perfectly still for two exposures.
My daughter just does not want me to photograph her... must be a "Dad" thing. So I asked one of the other students, a classmate of hers, if she would mind. At first she was hesitant but when I explained to her that I would be taking multiple portraits of her in the same frame she thought it would be cool. I composed an abstract kind of shot, having her face reflected in a mirror she was using as part of her self-portrait project. A photo of her is also in the image as well as part of her painting which is obscured by the back of her head. I think it's kind of cool. This one is on 4x5" Tri-X.
So, I have broken the ice on portraiture and think I would like to do it again.
Richard Coda has been photographing since he was a teenager. In college he fell in love with images made with large format cameras. Starting with a 4x5" view camera, he soon moved up to an 8x10" camera and, most recently, has begun working with an 11x14" camera.
While he photographed landscapes early in his career, recently his work has focused on that which has been overlooked, forgotten, or looked at, but not seen. He finds compositions where others see the ordinary, or nothing at all. While concentrating on black and white for most of his career, Richard has found a new love for color, using color as the subject, while still retaining his classical aesthetic for form, line and tone.
Please visit his websites at www.rcodaphotography.com and www.pctype.com