Feb 06, 2013

Behind the Scenes: A Giant Ego

Shooting Background Plates

When shooting a Composite, it’s always important to start out with your Background. This gives you the framework of what your image will look like and how your subject will interact with their surroundings. We decided to shoot at a restaurant here in Chicago to capture the mood we wanted and shot many different Angles of the room to make sure we’d have one that looked perfect.

A Giant Ego Background

Building a Miniature

What’s a good way to make sure your subject really fits in with their Background? Recreate their surroundings! In this case building a miniature version of the room was our best option. The best part about this was since we were making our model much bigger and wanted her to look cramped into a small space, we didn’t need to build something huge.

Every measurement of our plywood room was congruent to the room in the restaurant. Think of maps, and how they use inches to represent miles. It’s the exact same concept! We were able to use the measurements we took at our location and bring them into a 3D modeling program, letting us know what Scale would yield proper results.

A Giant Ego
A Giant Ego


Post Production

When shooting for Composites, It’s always best to do as much as you can in camera rather than relying on Photoshop. This will make your final image look much more real, even though it’s not! Because we spent a great deal of time calculating our lighting, room measurements, and camera Angle, our post production consisted of cutting out our model and bringing the two different images together seamlessly. Watch for the Phlearn PRO Tutorial on how to do this on Friday!

Final Image

A Giant Ego

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  • user image
    Ryan Cooper

    I really like this one but almost feel like the other image of the model would have worked better. The first one where she is looking right into the camera. Since the theme is a giant ego that confident engagement with the camera works really well. In the photo you used she is kind of looking down which is something people with giant egos tend not to do.

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    Chris Fore

    So it looks like the first room was shot relatively wide (I’m gonna throw out 35mm but of course I don’t really know). Did you then shoot the model with the same focal length while shooting her from a distance relative to the ratio that you shrunk the room? Or did you do different calculations to use a longer focal length on her?

    Thanks for the inspiring video!

    • user image
      Aaron Nace

      Good question, we used the same lens at the same focal length. If the room was sized correctly, all you have to do it get closer.