How you ever had to take pictures of a shy child? This little girl, Isabel, was just adorable. Who would believe she was super shy? She was…
Photographing a shy child can be a challenge. Having props, tools, and a gift for conversation, can help get a shy child to open up.
So in this Blueprint I will explain, not only the post processing of one of the shots but how I got her talking and jumping.
When she arrived, she wanted to cling to her mom. So with a few props I got her to open up for a few minutes in order to grab some fun shots. It started with a reflector and peek-a-boo. She seemed to love this. I hid behind the reflector then would come out and get her laughing. Eventually I had the camera ready to shoot as I came out from behind the reflector.
Next prop – an umbrella. As shown below. As you can see – this got her interacting (as she then played peek-a-boo with me). The hard part was focusing at an aperture of 2.0 or so while having 2 seconds to get the shot. She would lift the umbrella up to reveal her face and then right back down. I had to be fast.
Once she warmed up, she would give me a minute before she would decide getting in pictures was not on her agenda for the day. But even in these small windows of time, I was able to act fast and get some sweet shots. She looks like such a little princess in these. The black and whites were processed 1st in color using MCP Complete Workflow’s Peek-a-Boo and then Color Burst. Then I used MCP Quickie Collection’s Vanilla Ice Cream, which is my “go to” black and white action.
At the end of this brief photo shoot, I tried one more time to get Isabel interacting, and dared this pretty 3 year old to jump as high as she could. Now I know it looks like she did a great job. And she did. But part of what happened was “behind the scenes.” I told her I would take the pictures not looking. So I set my camera to all focus points, put the camera on the ground angled slightly up, asked her to jump, and fired away. Then each time, I would have her come over and see the shots. After 3 tries, I got her from this great perspective, in focus. YAY!
Now for the blueprint part…
For processing this shot:
– Step 1: Ran the MCP Complete Workflow’s Peek-a-Boo to brighten up the shadow areas of the photo as well as her skin (she was very tan)
– Step 2: Ran MCP Complete Workflow’s Color Burst. This is the action I use on the majority of my pictures. It adds contrast and color pop without messing with skin tones.
– Step 3: Speaking of skin tones, her skin was a little yellow/orange mainly from her tan. But I wanted to brighten it up and fix the colors. I used MCP Touch of Light. This Photoshop action is free on my site. I painted the light on her face and skin with a 30% opacity brush. Then I used the accompanying Touch of Darkness on the background to make the colors a tad richer.
– Step 4: Fix skin color… I used curves to color correct. This method is taught in my Color Fixing Workshop. In case you are familiar with it, I got my numbers in check by reducing red (adding cyan), and adding blue (reducing yellow). I used the masks to have this effect certain areas more than others so it was not applied globally.
– Step 5: Retouching – hard to see here, but she had what I believe was stitches above her left eye (so our right). I used the clone and patch tool to get rid of that.
– Step 6: Ran MCP Eye Doctor to just add a little spark to her eyes – and enhance the catch lights.
– Step 7: Put in MCP Magic Blog It Board to show you and sharpened for web.