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Thread: Match Zipper

  1. #1
    Wolfiesden's Avatar
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    Default Match Zipper

    The shot:
    Assignment38-03

    Before anyone gets excited, that's the bottom of her ribcage not the bottom of her boobs up in the top corners of the image.
    Nikon D7000 | D70 | SB-910 | SB-700
    Nikon 24-70 /f2.8 | 35 /f1.8g | 18-105 /f3.5-5.6
    Tamron 70-200 /f2.8
    Pocket Wizard FlexTT5/PowerMC2/Sekonic L-478DR, Einstein 640

    flickr | wolfiesden.com

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    Wolfiesden's Avatar
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    So, to make this shot, I laid out the "zipper" on some beige foam core board. I used super glue on the ends of a few matches so they wouldn't move too much.

    Here is the setup:
    Assignment38-BTS01

    Once I got the zipper all made and the pull in place, I set up some lighting. I carefully recorded the position, angle and distance of each light source and measured each one using a light meter.
    Assignment38-BTS03

    An early sample
    12B_0314_flickr.jpg

    So once I got the lighting down I took the shot of the zipper.
    Assignment38-BTS02
    Nikon D7000 | D70 | SB-910 | SB-700
    Nikon 24-70 /f2.8 | 35 /f1.8g | 18-105 /f3.5-5.6
    Tamron 70-200 /f2.8
    Pocket Wizard FlexTT5/PowerMC2/Sekonic L-478DR, Einstein 640

    flickr | wolfiesden.com

  3. #3
    Wolfiesden's Avatar
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    Once I got the zipper shot done. I borrowed a couple of my granddaughters for the belly portion. I carefully rotated the lighting so it was all exactly the same in relation to them as it was in relation to the match zipper. I shot both their bellies and one of their back's.

    Assignment38-03

    Assignment38-02

    Assignment38-01

    I can't show you the originals, kids, underwear etc.

    Anyway, in photoshop I used the various content aware clone and stamp brushes to extend the ends of the matchsticks out to the sides.

    Then I created a mask on the matches layer and carefully painted out the beige foamcore. I chose this color of board because its very similar to skin in color and would be easy to deal with for masking. If I chose an off color, the mask would have to be far more carefully done and the color would also affect the matches. As it is with the beige board, I didn't even have to worry about the areas between the matches, only the big V in the middle.

    Since I matched light direction and amounts, I didn't have to fake the shadows. Those are all real shadows. I softened them slightly to help them blend over the skin but they are otherwise real. Since the two layer's shadows all match up, the whole image has a consistent lighting look and feel.
    Nikon D7000 | D70 | SB-910 | SB-700
    Nikon 24-70 /f2.8 | 35 /f1.8g | 18-105 /f3.5-5.6
    Tamron 70-200 /f2.8
    Pocket Wizard FlexTT5/PowerMC2/Sekonic L-478DR, Einstein 640

    flickr | wolfiesden.com

  4. #4
    NgaiHill's Avatar
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    Default

    A really interesting concept and an interesting set of shots.
    Thanks for sharing your method with us.
    LISA
    Canon EOS 600D, 50mm, 18-55mm & 55-250 mm kit lens for the flash stuff.
    Olympus Tough 8010, waterproof, shockproof compact P&S - great for the kids.


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  5. #5
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    A lot of hard work went into this. Very creative. Thanks.
    Zafar
    Nikon D300s, Nikkor 50mm F1.4G, Tamron SP 24-70mm F2.8 VC, Tokina 11-16mm F/2.8, Nikkor 18-300mm F3.5-5.6, Nikon SB 900
    Flickr http://www.flickr.com/photos/zafarsami/

  6. #6
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    Nice one, I'm more and more interested in replacing my old canon with the Nikon D7000, the image looks great, thanks for sharing.

  7. #7
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    wow this is incredible and interesting imagination. Thanks for posting and sharing some methods, they're very useful

  8. #8
    BrendelMamaNV is offline Just a little shhutterbug
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    This is a fantastic image! I can't imagine how long it took you to set up all those little matchsticks! Even if they were lying flat, it would still be a tedious endeavor... but well worth it! Great results!

    Tell me, though... is the grid (over the lights) really necessary? What would the effect be without it?

  9. #9
    sk66's Avatar
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    Nice work.
    I wonder about using "displace" for the match layer as it would then follow the body contours...might be neat to try since you did all of this work already.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by BrendelMamaNV View Post
    This is a fantastic image! I can't imagine how long it took you to set up all those little matchsticks! Even if they were lying flat, it would still be a tedious endeavor... but well worth it! Great results!

    Tell me, though... is the grid (over the lights) really necessary? What would the effect be without it?
    It was tedious. Took about 2 hours to get them laid out and looking right. Re-started the process a couple times and finally I got what I wanted.

    The grid was in place during the matches shot because I thought I might need it while photographing the girl. I wasn't sure how wide the shot would end up being. As such I didn't want the main light spilling onto any background/fill cards. I wanted to make sure the lighting would be exactly the same as what was used on the girl shots for shadows. The grid played little in the grand scheme of things, at least for this shot.

    Quote Originally Posted by sk66 View Post
    Nice work.
    I wonder about using "displace" for the match layer as it would then follow the body contours...might be neat to try since you did all of this work already.
    Hmm, not an expert on PS (as you can probably tell), where is this displace thing you speak of? Willing to give it a go and see what happens.
    Nikon D7000 | D70 | SB-910 | SB-700
    Nikon 24-70 /f2.8 | 35 /f1.8g | 18-105 /f3.5-5.6
    Tamron 70-200 /f2.8
    Pocket Wizard FlexTT5/PowerMC2/Sekonic L-478DR, Einstein 640

    flickr | wolfiesden.com

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