Karijini – Portrait of the “Grand Master”

6 05 2010

Haven’t had a lot of time to process my Karijini images, but I thought I’d take a break from the landscapes to do a stylistic portrait of Mr. Eastway.

We were out doing a sunset shoot of trees.  While the trees were pretty cool I just couldn’t get excited about shooting them, so I pulled out my strobe and thought I’d do some experimenting of some stylistic portrait shots.  I cranked the flash up to full power and “nuked” Peter as I was shooting him straight into the setting sun.  Thats not a sunburn he’s got, thats radiation from the photons I was hitting him with from my flash gun.

I’ve deliberately not processed this photo normally, I am aiming for an over-the-top very stylised portrait rather than a “real portrait”.

What do you think?  Too over the top or cool?

Look forward to your thoughts




10 responses

6 05 2010

We might make a portrait photographer out of you yet.

As an environmental portrait, I think it works well.

The only things I don’t like are the chopped-off tripod legs (although arguably that’s not important, as the subject is an unchopped Peter) and a bit of haloing in the sky around the larger grey part of the tree trunk.

7 05 2010

I really like the lighting and the processing, they are sensational. I really like the colour tones in both Peter and the tree and landscape and think they work well together.

From a composition perspective I would have preferred the camera to be angled a bit lower, for me the real interest is Peter, the tree and the earthy tones and textures but I find them competing with a reasonably bright sky. I am not sure that the sky adds to the image, can’t decide if it is too bright or there is just too much of it.

As for your model, I like the concept of capturing him at work but he looks pretty apprehensive. Maybe it was the radiation from the flash that scared him.

Overall, for my taste I don’t at all find it over the top, I think that your choice of processing adds to the image and complements the subject matter, so I vote it cool.


7 05 2010
Peter Eastway

Good replies from both Johno and Gavin – and I do look a bit apprehensive, don’t I. Mind you, Brent is a big bloke and that flash was mighty strong! It could have been the end of me. As a concept, I love the shot! But I agree with the cropping (a tad wider with the tripod legs OR perhaps getting in much tighter). On the other hand, Brent has a half-decent shot whereas my close up of tree was a bit of a yawn! Next time!

7 05 2010

I like it, nothing wrong with your approach here.
I would also suggest a tighter or slightly wider crop here, I probably prefer the tighter crop, so you don’t miss the tripod legs and the dead space on the right of the tree would not be missed either.
Can’t wait for more shots so get into gear Brent 🙂

7 05 2010
Roger Barnes

At first I felt it was slightly overdone, but it’s growing on me.

In general, the treatment should serve the idea, so the big questions I always ask myself are “what emotion/idea am I trying to convey, and how does this treatment help do that?”

As a study of a landscape photographer doing his thing, use of strong-flash and high-contrast doesn’t lend itself to suggesting what Peter sees through your interpretation.

However, if this is simply how you saw the scene, or how you wanted to convey it for something different, then it works fine.

7 05 2010
Peter Ng

I remember you taking this shot. You have done well shooting against the light. Shows how much power the SBs pack. I like how you have also captured Neal and ? Tony Hewitt. They look in a ‘previsualisation’ phase. While Peter is taking the shot. And you taking a shot of him taking the shot. What you were really doing was helping Peter light up the bark as the Phase Ones don’t do well in low light 😉

7 05 2010

I cannot blame you for looking apprehensive.

If you’re anything like me, you probably prefer to be behind the lens.

Our friend is turning into a “Strobey”, it seems!

8 05 2010

I liked it on first look and even after taking on board the comments above I still like it. Interesting to see how easily you made the great man look like all the rest of us – “normal”. Weird how Peter looked apprehensive yet Tahlea looked completely at ease – spending too much time in the seedy world of photography will do that to you.

15 05 2010
Dylan Fox

I like it mate!
I dont think the editing is over the top at all! It makes it more interesting
good stuff

7 07 2010
David H

Late but I like that Peter and the tree have become the two subjects and the scene drops away while retaining all that detail. Peters forearm looks huge, I hate to arm wrestle him!
David H

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