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How To Shoot It

A Special Effects Composite For Real SFX [How You Shot It]

By Guest Contributor on June 3rd 2015

How You Shot It is a series where you show us how you shot an image. Many who use our presets love to share their special processing recipes. You can join the SLR Lounge Community  group on Facebook and share your favorite images and recipes as well! Or for a chance to have your shoot featured, click here.

Today’s post is from Antti Karppinen. Antti is Digital artist, photographer, retoucher from Finland. Antti is was named Portrait photographer of Finland for 2013 and is an internationally awarded commercial photographer. He belongs to a new generation of image artisans, who believe all things are possible and creates complex visual concepts and images with unlimited imagination.

danny-2
Inspiration

I’ve always loved everything about movies, theater, and TV productions so I was very excited and honored to work with two-time BAFTA winner, RealSFX. We had been planning to make team photos for the company for a few months, and I finally got my chance to take some raw images.

Since RealSFX is world class special effects team whose done work for shows such as Dr. Who and Sherlock to name a few, I wanted to incorporate the company director, Danny Hargreaves into a scene where he just blows s**t up and looks cool. The final image was inspired by the Expendables 2 movie poster.

At the same time,  I made this really simple portrait with the same light setup.

danny-3

How I Shot It

I took the main image for the composite at their workplace with a simple green screen backdrop to make the cutting out of the character faster. The light setup was pretty straight forward, too – one main light to the camera right and then just a small kicker to the back of the subject.

danny

The Post Processing

The retouching process can be seen in the video below.

Gear List

Camera: Canon 5D Mark II
Lenses: Canon 24-105mm f/4L
Lighting Equipment: 2 x Godox Witstro flashes

Conclusion

This sure was a fun project to do, and the attention this image has received has been really cool. Danny and the rest of the company know so many people from the movie and TV industry, so the image has been seen already by many people that I hope to one day work with. Once again, I hope this will bring me closer to the movie industry since these are kind of images I dream of creating in the future.

About the “How to Shoot It” Series

This educational series highlights amazing images from our writers as well as our community. The goal is to not only feature inspirational work but to provide valuable education for our photography community. If you would like to submit your work or shoot to be considered, please click here.

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Q&A Discussions

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  1. Trevor Good

    I have been a huge fan of compositing since I learned about it. The whole idea of compositing truly makes anything possible!

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  2. Brian McCue

    More post-processing than I’m comfortable with, but really cool stuff. Watch the video.

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  3. Dragoș Ardeleanu

    A good composite is always magic. This is a technique I still have to learn.

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  4. robert s

    interesting and unique. not my thing as its too “artificial” for me personally but im sure it will appeal to a specific market.

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  5. Jason Boa

    Amazing,inspiring and totally beyond me – lol

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