Explore your dark side
Don’t be afraid of the dark, revel in it! Claire Gillo unfolds the drama and shoots a spooky gothic portrait using carefully-arranged flash
Set up flashguns to shoot a spooky portrait, then add mist in post-processing
Photography can be dramatic, and in this tutorial we’re going to show you just how dramatic! For our shoot we placed a costume-clad model in some atmospheric ruins. Our costume was based around the classic ‘plague doctor’ outfit, and we used a Venetian mask to give our model a suitably long nose.
As there are a few logistics to consider on a shoot like this it’s best to do a recce of the location beforehand. Look for leading lines such as stairs or archways to frame your subject. Take along a friend when you look over the location and they can pose, enabling you to assess various compositions. That way you’ll know the best spot,
On a shoot like this it’s best to do a recce of the location beforehand… That way you’ll know the best spot, saving a lot of time and effort on the day of the shoot
saving a lot of time and effort on the day of the shoot.
To get results like ours you will need to do a little post-production editing work on the final image. It’s best to shoot in RAW so you have more flexibility at the editing stage. We used Photoshop Elements to make our final adjustments, but there are many camera editing programs that will do a similar job. The important thing is to desaturate the scene so you’ve almost removed the colour, as this gives the shot atmosphere.