Los-Angeles-based commercial photographer Caleb Kuhl released a behind-the-scenes video of his Wild West photoshoot. It is a very cool, high-production on-location shoot involving a good amount of lighting and grip, and a lot of careful planning, especially for his composites.
All images and video are the property of Caleb Kuhl.
Los-Angeles-based commercial photographer Caleb Kuhl released a behind-the-scenes video of his Wild West photoshoot. It is a very cool, high-production on-location shoot involving a good amount of lighting and grip, and a lot of careful planning.
There are several good pointers that I got from this video. When it comes to creating a complex composite like the first scene with the cowboy and the whip or the scene inside the saloon, it is important to sketch out the scenes and character placement, as well as the lighting. Additionally, when you are shooting composites where there are a lot of elements happening, it can be easier to light and shoot each element individually and bring them all in in Photoshop.
Although this require a lot more pre-planning, this also means that you won’t have to have large rigs for lighting or a lot of lighting in general. You can use a handful of lights to get the optimal lighting for each talent instead.
Additionally, you can really lock in the best movement, posture, and emotion from each person before moving on to the next person. The hardest part of an ensemble shoot is making sure everyone is hitting their mark correctly, so if you can just shoot each individual separately, you can pick and choose the best out of each person and combine them together.
Make sure you lock your camera down on a tripod in order to make it easy for you to align and composite the images together. If you can make it work in your shoot, tethering really helps you to see your images in a larger screen for better-detailed adjustments of the scene in front of you.
Another important factor to remember is to make sure that you have consistent lighting for each composite. This will help make your composite look more believable once you start merging the images together.
For example, the window and door on camera left in the saloon scene lights everyone in the scene, so Caleb made sure that each person is lit properly in relation to that light.
Thanks to Iso1200.com for the find.