3LT Adrian

I’ve had my eye on a 3LT tripod for some time now. I was getting frustrated with my current tripod which isn’t very user-friendly. Spending a day with it is a real strain just from the size and weight.

With this experience in mind, I really would have preferred to have seen and felt “Adrian” before purchasing it. Unfortunately I couldn’t find anywhere nearby that I could check it out. Then I saw that 3LT were selling refurbished models for a limited period and I decided it was worth the risk.

3LT 3 Legged Thing Adrian

Putting the two tripods side by side for the first time with the legs fully extended and locked in the default position they both pretty much reach to the same height. With the centre columns extended, out of the two, Adrian felt much more solid.

It is only when they are in their closed positions that you see the difference. Adrian is not much longer than a 15-inch Apple Macbook Pro. When you consider how much kit is taken for a shoot, any saving in space is always welcome.

Having spent a few hours with it now, the only issue I have is the brass coloured spring stop in the AirHed that I can’t find a release for. This isn’t a problem with the supplied plate. The problem comes when using the L bracket I now have on the Nikon D3. In the horizontal position, for whatever reason, it gets stuck on this stop and the only way to release the camera is by poking the stop with a small screwdriver. In the vertical position the L bracket doesn’t snag in the same way. A longer term solution could be to get another base plate to attach to the L bracket.

It is still early days with this well-made British piece of equipment. What I have seen so far I like. It was the right decision to spend the money on Adrian.

Ring of Light – Take 2

I had another go with the orbis Ringflash and I have to say I am very impressed with the way it spreads an even ring of light across the subject.

This time around I decided to take the pictures much tighter than on my first attempt. So this time, I needed to make several minor adjustments to the equipment before getting the framing right.

Spending time fiddling to position equipment precisely isn’t the way that I’m used to working. You do need to take your time to get the best out of the equipment. There is definitely a different pace working in a studio which is a bit alien to me.

The equipment I am supplied with by my day job is the Canon brand and my personal equipment is the Nikon brand. As I spend very little time with my own gear, every now and again I forget which button to press.

With such tight framing it was important to get the right focus point and it took me a minute or two to figure out which dial it was to change it. During those few minutes I felt like a bit of a fraud calling myself a “professional” but let’s keep that between you and me.

With thanks to Felicity and N22 Portrait Studio for the facilities.

Ring of Light

You sometimes see fashion photographers on television using ring flashes in studio shoots. I did wonder if these fashion photographers were just showing off for the TV cameras. Then I noticed in some of my portrait shots a slight shadow under the chin which needed filling in. Maybe they weren’t just showing off and there was something in the ring flash.

Then I came across this YouTube video by That Nikon Guy in which Matt demonstrates the orbis Ringflash.

A relatively inexpensive addition to my kit, which modifies the light in a completely new way using the flash guns I already own, can only mean one thing – opening of the wallet for the credit card.

And here are my first shots, with thanks to Felicity and N22 Portrait Studio for the facilities.