IAP 2 exercise 2.4 same background, different model

For this exercise I went back to the idea I’d been playing around with for a while and had used in the typology exercise in part 1 – shooting people through my front room window. Having discovered in the course of that exercise that I needed the images to be higher-res, I switched cameras and tried my Canon EOS 6D Mark II with a 70–300mm zoom lens.

Since I was focusing on an area of road into which pedestrians are currently being diverted due to building works taking up the pavement, my potential subjects would inevitably be in motion, so I decided to use shutter priority mode with a speed of 1/200 to keep movement blur to a minimum. I also increased the ISO to 800 to give myself a reasonably small aperture size and thus give myself a margin of error in focusing.

To minimise the possibility of being spotted by potential subjects I connected my phone to the camera via wifi and used the remote live shooting facility. This allowed me to stand away from my camera and meant that any movement I made was less likely to draw attention to the camera. I took a batch of photos, but after cropping them and finding that the resulting resolution was still not quite good enough, I realised that I needed to zoom in on a smaller area of the road.

Focusing on a smaller area made it difficult to make well-composed shots due to the reduced timeframe I had for capturing the subject as they passed through my target area and the slight delay in communication between the camera and my app, especially the latency in the live viewfinder display on the phone. I therefore decided to use high-speed continuous shooting mode instead of single shot, which meant abandoning remote control since continuous shooting is not available via the phone.

This combination of settings gave me exactly what I needed. I simply started pressing the shutter release button as soon as a potential subject moved into my area of interest and continued pressing it as they moved through the frame. This gave me an average of around 5 shots for each subject and immediately increased my rate of successful subject capture.

At the end of this session I selected half a dozen images. Although I had used a tripod, some small differences in the positioning of the images’ white triangle focal point had occurred due to the tripod moving on my wooden floor, so I adjusted them slightly to make the alignment of the background consistent through the set.