Objective 9 - Portraits

The nice thing about the bi-annual Classic Fighters show in Omaka is that it is so much more than just planes.  Scattered around the airfield you have “live-in” re-enactors who really work hard to provide you with a true authentic experience. Spanning the course for 3 days there is always something new happening.
This year there was a focus on the New Zealand Pioneers, so lots of early 19th century goods on display. And of course not to be outdone are the WW1 and WW2 participants who are always displaying some amazing pre and post war equipment.

So Portraits should not be an issue?
Well just slightly and the reason is obvious. There is so much activity around and lots of people asking actors to pose etc, you get very little time to really compose or organise your shot.

So with no fleccy, stage props or control over the lighting, it’s time to put on my paparazzi hat and go shoot some actors.
Once again I turn to my trusty 28 to 300mm L Lens, as it will give me the range I need to cover pretty much most scenarios.  So rather than spending too much time babbling, here are some of my portrait shots and as per usual I have added the appropriate camera settings to each image.

Special note: reference CR means I have cropped the image, DG means I have undertaken a small amount of post processing.

This photo is one of my favourites, mainly because the guy was very patient and I was able to get him to pose. I really wanted to catch the object in the lens which I did after getting him to adjust a few times. Can you guess what he is looking at?
f7.1, ISO100 1/60 28mm CR
 This next one was taken of the back of a press photographer so jumped in an took this shot.
f8, ISO100 1/200 40mm
f9, ISO400 1/160 60mm CR
My last shot of the German Infantry soldier standing in front of the Panzer 4 was also staged. The guy very keen to pose so lined him up and clicked away.

f18, ISO400 1/400 -1 exp  80mm (CR,DG)
 The theatre part of the show certainly provides excellent opportunities to capture great portraits. this one I did attempt to use a custom white balance. However I did have to undertake some post processing due to a slight mistake as I had left my exposure 1 step down from previously shooting planes in the sky.
f11, ISO200, 1/250 260mm

If there was ever an opportunistic shot then this is one of them, Unsure what he was doing but capturing the Spitfire landing behind him, I couldn't have timed it better. You just have to keep your eyes peeled all the time at shows there is a lot happening.

My last couple of posts are more around capturing people doing what they do best. The first one a friend Rob, loves his wildlife photography and he is always crouching, ducking and diving into under growth.
f7, ISO400, 1/160 110mm (CR, DG)

And finally my last fittingly considering the theme of the show, a Pioneer actor standing next to one of the amazing Penny Farthing Bikes, He gazes across the field towards a WW1 Tank rolling out to battle all for his king and country. Perhaps I should convert this to a sepia tone?
f14, ISO300 1/100 28mm (CR)


  1. Very nice Lee. And I agree, that first guy is awesome. He always goes out of his way to pose and will often do so as soon as he sees you coming with a camera :)

  2. Hey Lee, Both 1 and 3 for me very cool


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