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New here... But serious.
Old 06-05-2007, 09:54 AM   #1 (permalink)
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I'm new to this forum, so hi.

I'm not sure where to post this, but since this was the busiest forum...

I have a local contest that I've been shooting here in St. Louis, MO. I need to push the time I'm spending on each shoot down considerably. The "end-game" is only five major photographs that are placed in the contest, thought I like to have a gallery of at least 9 of each girl on my site.

Currently I spend probably 1.5-2 hours shooting. Then an half hour sorting, and around 2 hours post processing 15 pictures. I've limited this to 9-12, but that starts to limit the "choice" the girls have for what photos will be in the contest.

Some examples of images are at: http://www.sedura.com

I'm looking of anything from suggestions to cut down shoot time, or post-processing time. However, I still want to give each contestant control and choice.... We are considering going to two girls a week for the contest. That would be great and all, if I were a full time photographer! I don't even consider myself a pro.

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Re: New here... But serious.
Old 06-05-2007, 12:46 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Hey Jason,

I know some of the girls you've shot and always looking forward to the new girls in the contest.
If you don't use lightroom yet, you should, because that cut down on my sorting and editing time a lot. I can get a girl to pick out her favorite 10 pictures in less than 10-15 minutes right after the shoot, out of around 200 pictures.
I don't do much in photoshop other than levels, curves and USM, but you have to have your lighting set properly from the start. I suck at photoshop, so I'm always more concerned getting everything right in the camera in the first place.
My shooting time varies from 2 to 5 hours, depending on how experienced she is posing, but if the girl have fun and a good attitude the shoot always lasts longer.
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Re: New here... But serious.
Old 06-05-2007, 01:02 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Hi Jason,

You have some very nice images in your online portfolio and at least you're getting good results for your time invested. You'll be a welcome addition here.

As to reducing time, someone here will have ideas but since I don't do this for a living either, I'm not sure I have any good ideas but as a scientist by education, I know how to analyze processes. From the times given, you don't seem to be way out of bounds for what I would expect to see. Your PP is averaging about 8 minutes per image which might be a little high if you are getting it right in the camera. If you're not getting it "right" in the camera, then I would move back into the shooting stage and evaluate the process since you seem to be spending a lot of time there for 15 "keepers".

My guess is 4.5 hours isn't too far off and the more experience you gain, the shorter your time will get.
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Re: New here... But serious.
Old 06-06-2007, 12:07 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lsc1 View Post
Hi Jason,

You have some very nice images in your online portfolio and at least you're getting good results for your time invested. You'll be a welcome addition here.

As to reducing time, someone here will have ideas but since I don't do this for a living either, I'm not sure I have any good ideas but as a scientist by education, I know how to analyze processes. From the times given, you don't seem to be way out of bounds for what I would expect to see. Your PP is averaging about 8 minutes per image which might be a little high if you are getting it right in the camera. If you're not getting it "right" in the camera, then I would move back into the shooting stage and evaluate the process since you seem to be spending a lot of time there for 15 "keepers".

My guess is 4.5 hours isn't too far off and the more experience you gain, the shorter your time will get.
Quote:
Originally Posted by gaborm View Post
Hey Jason,

I know some of the girls you've shot and always looking forward to the new girls in the contest.
If you don't use lightroom yet, you should, because that cut down on my sorting and editing time a lot. I can get a girl to pick out her favorite 10 pictures in less than 10-15 minutes right after the shoot, out of around 200 pictures.
I don't do much in photoshop other than levels, curves and USM, but you have to have your lighting set properly from the start. I suck at photoshop, so I'm always more concerned getting everything right in the camera in the first place.
My shooting time varies from 2 to 5 hours, depending on how experienced she is posing, but if the girl have fun and a good attitude the shoot always lasts longer.
Thanks for the replies and advice. Please keep in mind some of the basics might be in order. When you get down to it I've really only been shooting seriously for 8 months.

Good call on lightroom - I've been a lightroom user for some time since beta 2 in fact (I'm a geek at heart) - I can't see working without it. Over 18k images in that puppy and counting. Fabulous product. I am leveraging picks, ratings, colors, etc to organize. It might be I personally am trying to limit down to 15 or so myself in the pick process and I spend alot of time being choosy.

Perhaps I should try to grab 30 or so images and just send the new girl a proof set? I've been picking the exact images I want in a full processed gallery of 15 to get a good set of images online to gain some traffic on my site. It can be time consuming. Now that that is there and it is getting hit much more, I am thinking 15 was overkill. Even 9 might be, but that is probably where I will end up.

So process overall might be: (excuse the length, this seems to be helping me experiment with ideas by just typing it )

-Shoot.

I want to get my time where it is now - 300+ images in around 2 hours to around 1.5 hours and 150 much more "solid" images. lsc1 I think you're right on with one thing - I'm working harder on the back-end and correct things. This is probably due to only really truely working in a studio/modelish type photography for a very short period of time. It has been quite a learning curve, but hopefully I'm getting there.

Here's a random of a pic I fixed it up a bit after the fact. Took 6 minutes. Nothing major I suppose, but a hairlight and attention to her "fuzz" ahead of time would have been easier I suppose?
http://sedura.smugmug.com/gallery/2960708#160048828

-Picks.

I've always been trying to find just those right images I like. Reality, maybe it would be better to just export 30-40 proof photos to a private gallery and have the model pick her favorite 12-15. Then I'd pick 9 to process, and have her rate them 1-9 favorite to least favorite. Then pick 5 for contest.

-Processing

I'm feeling pretty good in photoshop these days. Not that there isn't anything to learn new, I just need to reduce the # of images I'm working on I think. Any suggestions on *quickly* smoothing skin? I've been either using a gaussian blur with a mask, or the healing brush both on various extra layers, then fade them out. I do have a wacom and a *very* fast 3.75Ghz computer (I'm a technology consultant by day - so the computer stuff I'm good to go), so I can paint a face pretty quick and get in and out of things promptly.

Misc:

I do think I need more knowledge and practice actually with leading the model and posing. Rapport I seem to be able to build fairly quick, but posing I sometimes get lost. Direction... I've got one of the girls that might be willing to come and help for a few shoots - who is quite experienced with modelling herself. One of those girls that can always just pose without effort consistently. It is interesting to see their viewpoint - it can be quite different from mine; and work well. Any suggestions to help learn the ropes quicker?
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Last edited by JasonSTL739; 06-06-2007 at 12:53 AM..
 
Re: New here... But serious.
Old 06-06-2007, 06:06 AM   #5 (permalink)
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LightRoom for sure!. Follow this URL for some training videos (free) that will give you an idea of the power of LightRoom. http://www.whibalhost.com/_Tutorials/Photoshop_LR/01/
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Re: New here... But serious.
Old 06-06-2007, 09:23 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by svaldes View Post
LightRoom for sure!. Follow this URL for some training videos (free) that will give you an idea of the power of LightRoom. http://www.whibalhost.com/_Tutorials/Photoshop_LR/01/
Already a heavy user of it
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