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iPortrait - A portrait series lit with 9 iPhones by Florian Bison

9/17/2012 ISO 1200 Magazine 0 Comments

The results:

Many of us have one, many of use it all the time for the most various things and many of us go crazy when the fruit logo company from California is about to announce a new version. Exactly. The iPhone. 100 points!
How hip, revolutionary, magical, life changing, irreplaceable, thin,  long (or should I say ‘looooong’), fast, light, >fill in any positive word you can think of here< it is has been said a billion times on a gazillion blogs – no need to repeat it. What I want to tell you very briefly is how we got the idea for the iPortrait series and how we realized it.

When something is talked about as much as the iPhone you start to think about what other function it has that Good Old Steve maybe didn’t think of. For many of us the iPhone becomes more and more a camera with a telephone function (at least for me it does) and from version to version the screen becomes more and more powerful. One day I sat together with a friend and we talked about the use of smartphones and innovations in the industry and suddenly these two facts linked together and the idea to turn the camera into a light source by lighting a series of portraits with the screens of a few iPhones was born.

Well, a few iPhones. That was probably the hardest part of the entire project. I made the experience that when you take away a smartphone from a friend you either risk losing him or you give his life a totally new dimension. Gladly I didn’t lose any and after making quite a few phone calls I finally found nine generous people who were so cool to borrow me their phone for a day.

To set up each phone safely we used a Manfrotto Clamp and mounted that on a Gobo head which was attached to a Gobo arm. That was again attached to another Gobo head which was mounted on a light stand. Take that times 9 and you have pretty freaky and futuristic looking set.

The whole shooting was a real experiment for all of us as we didn’t have the chance to do much testing in advance. That’s why it was really impressive to see with every shot how you can modify the light by using a bigger number of phones to create a softbox-kinda-light and a single phone to create kicker light as you would get it with a grid spot. All images were shot with a Nikon D4 and a Nikkor 85mm – f/1.4 lens.

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