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Weny Bittner: A Story of Five Photographs


I’d like to share with you 5 of my favourite photos from the last year and tell you how they were created. I mostly shoot female portraits in which I kind of transform women into muses, fairies, and wild women. And there’s usually a touch of glitter! I like bright eyes and I consider them to be one of the most important things in a portrait. That’s why I can’t do without reflector panels which help me get light into eyes. If there is no natural light, I rely on LED lights – most often FOMEI LED RING SMD 23W and FOMEI LED LIGHT SLIM 15W.


Image 1  The first photo is a portrait in a flood of pink tones. I wanted it to look gentle and almost magical. It’s great if you are able to find someone whose face perfectly fits your concept and who even agrees to have her hair dyed exactly the way you need. My first thoughts were to shoot in magnolias but before I managed to get things going, all blossoms were gone. That’s life. I was considering waiting for the right location until the next year but then I discovered a big blooming cherry tree by chance. I took it as a sign and went for it. At that time, it was April weather, so we decided to shoot in the morning, in order to get as much natural light as possible. I also supported it by a reflector panel. It makes the model stand out from the surrounding space. She has beautiful bright eyes that dominate the portrait. I also put a blooming twig in front of the lens, to ‘fog up’ the edges of the photo and to make the model stand out from the space even more. It was very windy and the model’s hair was flying everywhere. The bouncing branches of the tree didn’t make our work any easier either. That’s why it’s a snapshot in the wind. It was simply impossible to set something and then keep it in place even for a second!


Image 2 This photo is my idea of a wild woman trying to hide in a bush. Her eyes are full of curiosity which prevails over her fear of the unknown. I like how little is needed to take a photo which makes the viewer imagine a whole different world or at least an amazing scenery and wilderness. Well, this portrait was made on a pavement next to a very busy road in Prague 8, by a small hedge. The shooting took only a few minutes. Because of the preparation of the crown and the application of the glitter, we missed the golden hour. However, we caught the remnants of light by a reflector panel. It added the right reflection to the eyes and the glitters and pulled the model out of the dark. In post-processing, I darkened the surroundings of the model a little bit, to make her more distinctive.


Image 3 A lukewarm milk bath and sensual as well as innocent looks intended to seduce and to attract the observer. This shot relied on lights. I used a LED ring to provide direct light on the model and a panel pointed at the reflector, as there was no source of natural light in the bathroom. The focus and the light were mainly concentrated on eyes. The reflector eliminated hard shadows and enhanced the subtlety and innocence of the portrait. With everything set, I just needed to make the rosehip and ivy crown. Some more rosehips and ivy leaves were used as props to fill the bath around the model in other shots of the series.


Image 4 Neons and glitters! Colourful lights! Maybe a bit of a futuristic feel. This photoshoot was the beginning of my passion for glitter. However, we didn’t know how to apply it properly to make it stick in place, which made the work a little complicated. Once we managed to secure the glitter on the model’s hands at least a little bit, we were ready to start taking pictures. I illuminated the scene with a ring light covered by a blue filter. Then I weaved in a blue LED strip. On the other side I put a LED panel with a red filter. I also put reflector panels under both the lights, in order to strengthen the light reflection on the model. As usual, the eyes and the light in them were the most important for me. I wanted to achieve an effect resembling light galaxies in the model’s eyes.


Image 5 One of the most demanding photo sessions took place at the end of the last year. Winter ice fairy. Preferably in front of a waterfall. For the location we chose Iceland. The waterfalls can’t be reached by car, you have to walk for about an hour to get there, so I hoped there wouldn’t be too many tourists. Instead of a snack, we packed our bag with the beautiful dress and set out. We got to the place a little soaked and frozen but there was nobody there and we had the whole place for ourselves. I don't know how many degrees it was but the model was numb with cold the moment she took off her jacket. We were there in time for the sunrise but that was no good because the sky was cloudy and there was nothing the reflector could reflect. We had to work with what we had. My original idea was to have the model closer to the water, ideally in the water, but on the spot we found out that it wouldn’t really be safe. So in the end, the water remained in the background as something that matches the dress. The dress was almost immediately frozen and immovable but despite all the obstacles, we managed to capture the model as if she owns the place!