The Bassoon Player

The Bassoon Player

f/3.5, 1/80, ISO-100, 21mm, Flash

When I told a friend of mine about my idea to do a late-evening portrait of a bassoon player in the middle of a grassy field, his reaction was “you need to find a better instrument.” This is my way of playfully thumbing my nose at him.

I’d originally imagined the scene with a full moon off to the side. Partly I was attracted to the challenge of properly exposing both the subject and the moon simultaneously. But when I had such awesome clouds, my subject and his bassoon, and my camera all at hand (not to mention a handy folding chair) I could hardly pass up the opportunity.

This was taken about 20 minutes after sunset and I used a single flash with a shoot-through umbrella to light the model. I added an orange gel to the flash to soften the natural coolness of the strobe light and provide a warm contrast between the foreground and background.

I did quite a lot of post work on this, mostly in Color Efex Pro 4, and mostly using the Darken/Lighten Center filter. I added three control points of various intensities to bring out the clouds, give the illusion of more light control than I actually had, and adding a tremendous amount of definition to the clouds without resorting to contrast sliders which would invariably brighten up the face too much. I also added a bit of a graduated filter in Lightroom from the bottom up to darken the bottom third of the picture, providing increased balance and a more solid base to the image.

I really didn’t tweak much with the colors at all, and one of the things I’m most pleased with is how the young man’s hair is nearly the same color as his bassoon, which is very close to his natural hair color. The gel on the flash helped greatly, though, to draw the hair and bassoon colors even more closely together.

One thought on “The Bassoon Player

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

Edith Levy Photography

Writing with Light

Little Pics of Hope

FREE backyard nature pics to copy or print.

Helpful articles to improve your own nature and landscape photography explorations. You will also see stunning landscape and nature photographs created by award winning landscape and nature photographer Melissa Fague.


I click what I like

The Photographer's Guide to Landscape Photography

Tips and tricks to shoot some better photos of the most exciting places

J.T. Avery Photography

Landscape Photography & Photographic Art


the world we know


Life Thru A Lens.... Capturing and Displaying Life's Beauty

Stephen J. Tyler


The World according to Dina

Notes on Seeing, Reading & Writing, Living & Loving in The North

Stephen G Hipperson

My photography and other stuff

rona black photography

occasional visual essays

Maybrick's Photography

Beautiful British Isles.

Cardinal Guzman

Encyclopedia Miscellaneous - 'quality' blogging since August 2011

Rick Alonzo Photography

Tampa photographer | Portraits, Models, Landscapes, Wildlife and more

Joshi Daniel Photography

Images of People Photoblog




I can make no apologies for following my heart

Through My Lens

The world as I see it

%d bloggers like this: