Stob Binnein and Ben More

I had practised with the Hasselblad a bit before hand until I managed to figure out how to get the right exposure. I had bought a light meter to use with the camera but found out about the sunny f16 rule and now primarily rely on that. Ben Hope had also taught me that nude photography was not the same as landscape photography and that Provia wasn't automatically the best choice. I've since come to realise that maybe I was a little too harsh on Provia for this purpose and I should just avoid using it for skin tones in predominantly blueish light, such as those of overcast conditions.

We also left the old Minolta 28-70mm kit lens at home and just used the Sigma EX 50mm macro lens. I hadn't used this lens for this purpose before as I had only really thought of it as a macro lens. I realised that I should think of it as a prime lens that can be also be used for macro photography. Sigma lenses can impart a warm tone to the picture and it would have helped matters at Ben Hope when using Provia, but then a warm-up filter would have as well.

We were trying to create a hybrid of landscape and fine art nude photography. Velvia is the de-facto film to use for landscape photography so I thought I would try Velvia RVP 100 on the mountain. I didn't realise at the time that skin tones would come out a little on the pink side, although when you take into account the alpen-glow during the evening, it didn't come out as pink as it could have done. It certainly captured the essential character of the light that evening and I realised that sometimes this is more important than capturing accurate skin tones. After all, the prevailing light will change how your skin looks. It would have been a good idea to use a different film the next morning though. It does show though that if the model is directly underneath an overcast and stormy sky, as on the summit of Ben More, then it is limited to what you can do.

I was also amazed at how sharp the 150mm Sonnar was when taking a picture of Stuart from behind with his arms outspread the first evening Stob Binnein. The background is only slightly out of focus, so a more subtle and tasteful effect to concentrate the eye on the body.

I also experimented (partly for the sake of variety, partly because they were ideal conditions for doing so) with using a polariser. Even though I was using Velvia I was still amazed at how much this cooled down the skin tones. The same scene is basically included again at the bottom of the first page but taken without a polarising filter. I set the camera up with a cheap Hoya polariser and will try again another time with a more expensive one and a warm up filter as well.