On Assignment: Photographer at a Computer

by | Sep 2, 2022 | Assignments, Updates & Opportunities | 2 comments

Well folks, it’s time to shoot another assignment! This time, we’re shooting for Lenspiration (see the details here)! While James was out of the office for the past couple weeks I pulled together the details and went out to shoot it myself. Andd….here’s how that went!

Even though James will be returning to the office at this point, he has careful instructions not to view our assignment submissions till we’re all done shooting the assignment by the end of the month! It will be lots of fun to surprise him with all our photos, won’t it?!

Ok, so just a couple tips from my experience here!

Be careful with color casts in indoor settings. In the first photos I took, I did not realize how dramatic the temperature difference was between the cool window light and the warm ambient light in the room. I think bounce flash could have helped equalize the temperature.

I had challenges filling the gap between the photographer and her computer. It felt like there was this giant empty space in the middle, and I wasn’t liking it.

That’s when I tried adding a lens as a prop. But I wasn't crazy about the way that was coming out.

I kind of wish I had tried going wide-angle. These shots feel rather tight to me.

If I was submitting these photos, I would edit out the stickers and possibly the name brand on the computer. They don’t look all that professional 🙂

Taking different angles of the same subject is something I highly recommend. It helps spark creativity, it helps you see things in a different way, and sometimes you land on an angle you wouldn’t have originally found if you didn’t look for it.

There are so many little details I should have fixed in this next shot! The camera strap looks messy: remove it! The computer screen has fingerprints on it: clean it! There's an awful glare on the screen: adjust my angle to lessen that!

If you decide to model for yourself, I’d highly suggest you either use a remote release or download an app like this one that a kind friend has since recommended. 🙂 (Note: that particular app is for Canon users, and you'll have to check for your camera's compatibility). That is, unless you are interested in starting a stringent exercise regimen!

I would recommend focusing on the photographer…not the computer, camera or lenses…unless you have a good, artistic reason to do so. In reviewing the pictures afterwards, I determined that the photographer is where my eye wants to go, and if she’s not in focus it feels like a mistake.

To get my face to be in focus, I focused on the lens that was sitting on the edge of the table and just made sure that my face would be in the same focal plane. It worked great!

I tried to include surrounding elements in the room so it would feel like I was in a workspace. Once I landed on that setup, I knew I had something going and it was just a matter of perfecting it.

The last set of photos is when I knew I was getting there. Swapping the iPad for the laptop was the cherry on top…much better proportions. And you don't even notice I didn’t have a stylus! 🙂

This final set up is my favorite. It feels balanced, with the amount of negative space on the left giving a pleasing amount of room for text. And I love the simplicity.

I took one more shot where I scooted closer to the lens and camera, so that they and I would all kind of merge into one element. I still can't decide which of the two similar shots I like the better, but I think they're both good for their own reasons.

Now It’s Your Turn!

Have fun with this assignment! Take a friend to a coffee shop and get pictures there. Find a quiet nook in your bedroom that you can make look like a workspace. Ask a sibling to pose at the dining room table. The possibilities are endless! Watch your lighting. Think of ways to get creative. Shoot in manual and choose the best camera settings to make the photo as high quality as possible! I can’t wait to see what you all come up with!

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  1. James Staddon

    Lydia! What a GREAT Demonstration Video!! I had so much fun watching it. It’s was so neat to watch it unfold, and then to see the photos from the shoot in this blog post. Thank you for running the assignment for me while I was gone!



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