Shooting it: Blowing Bokeh


Blowing Bokeh!

Since this gathered a lot of attention on Flickr, I guess I’ll show every one how it went down. There was a bit of “cheating” involved, but it came out great! (And plus, I’m not shooting for a news paper or anything.)

Here’s a shot of how I set up the light!

The softbox was very high, I’d say maybe 9 – 10 feet pointing down at her. I also had a nude flash coming from behind her to give some fill light. Here’s a picture of the setup to give you a better idea just where the lights were.

Personally I don’t think this photo deserves as much attention as it got. I feel the lighting isn’t all that great, and if we had a few more minutes, I could have gotten a better angle of her face, instead of just a flat profile. I got the idea from gathering what other photographers have already done. We’ve all seen the photo of the person holding the sun, or people using filters to get heart, or star shaped bokeh. I’m pretty sure I have seen this exact picture somewhere else, but I can’t seem to find it. :/ Anyways, now to the cheating bit. I used photoshop to change the exposure, and help with the contrast a bit. I also photoshopped out some distracting lights from the picture. Here’s what the photo looks like unprocessed…

Doesn’t it look so boring and lifeless when it’s not processed?

And post processed…

Long story short, it took more lining the bokeh up with her face than it did lights! 🙂

I hope you enjoyed this, and feel free to ask any questions!

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Shooting it: In the Temple


Long time no see, guys! Here we are back again, this is Ilko, and this time I will white about a recent shot, with a simple one light setup!

I am doing a section with setup information on my homepage as well, so feel free to check my journal there with a lot of other articles, here is the link:

As I already said, it’s a one light setup here! The model is Asuka, and she is one of the models I’m most used, as we’ve been shooting together for more than one year at various locations, you can see a set with other of her photos here: CLICK! The location is a temple in Amagasaki, Kobe called Joon-ji, 長遠寺, and it’s not our first time to go there. The place is very quiet without a bunch of tourists, so it’s pretty easy to do some setup without getting scold!

I am using my Canon 5DMII with a 135/2 lens, and as you can see the settings it’s set at wide open aperture! It’s a one light setup, with the softbox set right from the temple on the ground. This was a bit difficult to manage, and I wish my flash stand could go a bit higher, but that was the only way to put it in this situation. The natural light was just enough to allow me to shoot at 1/200 sec at ISO100 and with wide open aperture – F/2 in this case, which gave me some really nice and soft DOF!

So here is the setup from the shot with all the details in it:

Strobist info:

Canon 580EXII in a 80×60 softbox, camera right;
Triggered by Pocket Wizard II Plus
(Phottix Atlas trigger on the camera)


photographer: Ilko Allexandroff 

I am triggering the flash with a Pocket Wizard II Plus attached on it, and a Phottix Atlas trigger on my camera body, as recently I broke the hot shoes of all my PW2’s, can’t believe they make them plastic… lol and now I can only use them as receivers on the flashes, since then on the camera body I put Phottix Atlas – nice metal hot shoe!

Feel free to write to our e-mail anytime for questions, creative.lightbrary@gmail.com or also you can leave a comment below and we will make sure to reply!

You can also follow me on my Facebook page: Ilko Allexandroff Photography, or check my homepage where I’m uploading some other articles on other topics: http://ilkoallexandroff.1x.com/

Stay tuned to our website for other articles soon!

Ilko Allexandroff Photography

Shooting it: Coming Out of Age


Ok, it’s time to write about the setup of some previous shots in our blog, and today I will start with this old shot I did more than year ago! The occasion was that the girl in the photo was becoming 20 which is considered as already being adult in Japan!

I am doing this section with setup information on my homepage as well, so feel free to check my journal there with a lot of other articles, here is the link:

Ilko Allexandroff Journal

I had a really big fail on that day, as I forgot to take one of my Pocket Wizards, so I was really about to slap myself very hard, and I was almost about to do only available light shots. Then I rememnered about the optical slave function of my Nikon SB-26s, so I put my Canon EX580II on the body of the camera, and with a snoot pointed to the main Nikon SB-26, I was triggering my flashes! I put the snoot, because I didn’t really want the on-camera flash to interfere in my pictures.

So here is the setup from the shot with all the details in it:

Strobist info:

SB-26 with a Shoot-through Umbrella – Camera Left (Up)
SB-26 with a Shoot-through Umbrella – Camera Left (Down)
Triggered by optical slave by an on-camera 580EXII with a snoot (didn’t want the on-camera flash to interfere in the photos)

photographer: Ilko Allexandroff , hairmake: AKI , assistant: Abdul

Coming of Age Day (成人の日 Seijin no Hi) is a Japanese holiday held annually on the second Monday of January. It is held in order to congratulate and encourage all those who have reached the age of majority (20 years old) over the past year, and to help them realize that they have become adults. Festivities include coming of age ceremonies (成人式 seijin-shiki) held at local and prefectural offices, as well as after-parties amongst family and friends.

It is difficult to take pictures on that same day, so with the model we decided to do a separate shoot, and take some pictures in a different day. The hair & make-up in this shoot was by Aki, and assistant was Abdul, so that made it a really fun time!

We were shooting in a bit separated part of Amagasaki, where we defenitely were the attraction of the day, having many people to come and see what we were doing. In the first comment I have some Behind The Stage pictures from the shooting setup and atmosphere, I hope you like them!

Feel free to write to our e-mail anytime for questions, creative.lightbrary@gmail.com or also you can leave a comment below and we will make sure to reply!

You can also follow me on my Facebook page: Ilko Allexandroff Photography, or check my homepage where I’m uploading some other articles on other topics: http://ilkoallexandroff.1x.com/

Stay tuned to our website for other articles soon!

Ilko Allexandroff Photography