How far can you get with a single prop inside a small studio set up? The possibilities are limitless and it starts with your imagination. Getting the most from a single prop is both challenging and exciting. It is a great way to improve your portrait photography. In this case, Gavin Hoey uses a basic black sun hat as the prop and brings out five different looks.
Lighting is the key here as Hoey plays with it to create the different moods. One of the important things to take into consideration is the prop you are choosing and the shadow effects it is bound to create. In this instance of the black hat, you have to be really careful with the cast shadows. The best part is that you can use it to your advantage by adding more drama to the picture using it. Also, the direction in which the model is looking into is vital for it defines the pattern to be achieved. The best way is to make the model turn heads constantly and bring in variety. For instance, in the overhead light set up where the light is set up above the model, the usual instinct can be to make the model look above and achieve as much as light as possible on the face. But the interesting thing to do will be to make the model look down and use the cast shadow on the eyes as a mystery element in the picture. It altogether changes the entire mood of the picture.
The more you experiment, the more exciting the results will be. Take a look at the video for a full run of the five different looks that Hoey pulls out.