Week 8 – planning an environmental portrait.


To capture a portrait of a fellow CATC student (not in your class) that captures the CATC experience and promotes the college

Pre Production

Find model – what are they studying

– how do they specialise

– are there props that they can bring

– discuss appropriate clothing

Timeframe – must be available thursday morning

Locations – Classrooms

– Library

– Mural, consider lighting

– posed with student work?

– stairs or breakout room

Styling – consider clothing and props and surroundings

Shots required – cover and lead shot

Cover shot – Colour – Plenty of background and negative space for text and title.  Consider using rear wall of library, subject on a chair with bookshelves, dioramas and windows adjoining IT room in background, as these would be easy to put text onto

Lead shot – Colour?? will process as colour and monochrome.  Subject sitting at row of monitors, with mural in background.  BW would be better without mural.  Remember to style and neaten desks.

Discuss location, visual approach and equipment requirements with partner and with subject

After careful consideration of all of the above, we have decided to use the library as our location.  It showcases the resources available at the college, as well as re-inforcing the quality of teaching by displaying graduating students work in the background.

Test shots below of the two aspects of this location show that we will need to use a tripod to minimise camera shake, a high ISO to overcome lighting issues and a wide aperture for the same reason. Using these setting parameters will also allow for a high shutter speed, to minimise subject movement, while allowing the photographers to make use of the available light.

Using available and ambient light, while difficult, due to the mixed nature of the lighting, will mean that set up time is reduced and there will be less disruption to the other library users.


Your subject is busy and you only have 30 minutes to produce 2 compelling images.

Discuss how to use the time effectively.

Our model is a fellow student, Don…. who is studying Graphic Design.  As we will be photographing him on his morning break, time is of the highest priority, so we will be doing test shots at similar times of day before the shoot, so that we are confident in our settings as a starting point.  This will minimise time spent on test shots with Don, and maximise our production time.

Backup Location Ideas

As the library is often busy, a backup location is absolutely essential

After scouting the campus, we plan to use the windows on Little Collins St.  The decoration to the signage by previous students adds colour and life to a traditional background.

Consideration will need to be given to the availability of this location, as it is a public thoroughfare, but with a long shutter speed and a tripod, that would actually work to our advantage.

Test image settings

Outside 1, Aperture F6.3, ISO 100 @52mm, Shutter speed 1/25

Outside 2, Aperture F13, ISO 100@52mm, Shutter speed 1/5

Inside 1, Aperture 3.8, ISO800@56mm, Shutter speed 1/64

Inside 2, Aperture F3.2, ISO800@56mm, Shutter speed 1/100