After some advice and critique really. Today I've done a Glamour Shoot for a friend who was after some pictures both for herself and to send to magazines and such. I've put a few of the "suitable" ones up on Facebook HERE
Now I've had soemone already see them and ask for some to be done, which is of course great! But I just wondered if anyone has any advice on shooting glamour shots?
At present my kit consists of:
18-55mm Kit Lense
I am looking at investing in a new lense, what would be a good idea?
Also is it about the equipment or more the photos?
The 'kit lens' that you have (18-55mm) is very often of not great optical quality, having been made for a budget price to 'bundle' with the camera. On the other hand, it's a very useful size for most of your shots.
Next problem.... it's probably a little 'slow' - by which I mean it's maybe f3.5 or f4..... you really want around the f1.7 to f2.8 max apertures to get really sharp - and give faster shutter speeds. You may say you take everything on a tripod but those bigger max apertures will put the backgrounds into a nice soft focus or completely blurred, giving a good 'bokeh'.
You don't mention lighting (apart from the reflector)..... you may like to investigate the use of 'continuous' lighting (aka 'hotlamps' but in fact not hot nowadays)..... reasonably powerful lamps (at daylight temperature) but cheap. A pair won't cost that much.
Your reflector is probably very useful, but you can build (masking tape) white thick card (or "foamboard") to make much larger reflectors - then bounce your lighting (even daylight) around well - and softening the contrast. Do the same with black thick card and you can reduce reflections around the subject.
More backdrops ..... and you could build a decent backdrop stand out of long poles (strong dowel) and some cheap brackets..... like football goalposts.
The subject of studio lighting is huge, so check out some lighting sites..... e.g. StudioLighting.net for tutorials, or even YouTube.
Lens wise (as Geoff has given such a complete answer about lighting etc) the only thing I would add to Geoffs comments are some specific examples and focal lengths.
The traditional focal length for portraits is standard to short telephoto. Given that standard on a 450D is pretty short (30-35mm) people still use 50mm (the standard on 35mm film) which, thanks to the 1.6x crop of your Canon, just about becomes a short telephoto.
The 35mm traditional short telephoto was around 85mm and this sort of focal length could be potentially quite useful for you.
It really depends on how far away from your model you are and what sort of effect your going for...
Fortunately, these monofocal optics aren't that expensive. The Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II is under £100 and the Canon 85mm f/1.8 is just over £300.
As Geoff mentions, these lenses are sharp. Surprisingly so in comparison to your 18-55 because they fully corrected and optimised to work at one focal length and one only. And the wide aperture makes it very easy to blur backgrounds and isolate subjects.
Thanks so much for such wonderful information guys! I'm somewhat blown away by technical language lol. I'm far more of a hands on experimentor than lets read up on what this does type girl! I had been considering the canon 50mm so I think I shall invest in one of those then definately!