Studio | Tear Sheet Recreation 1

In class we attempted to recreate this photo by Irving Penn:


First we had to analyse the different elements of the portrait –

  • The subjects forehead has been partially cropped out of the frame
  • The subjects hand and sleeves looks unusually large in comparison to his head
  • The subjects eyes are closed which is unusual for a portrait
  • The reflection in the glasses shows a window suggesting that Penn has used natural lighting to take this photo
  • The left side of the background is in shadow which would not have occurred naturally. Most likely a black board has been placed behind the subject and to the left, casting a shadow on the back wall. The board would have been far enough away from the wall to prevent a harsh shadow.
  • The camera was probably placed slightly below the subjects eye level which would help to make his hand look bigger because his head is further away from the camera.
  • The photo was taken using a low ISO because there is very little noise.


  • We placed our subject by a window in the corner of the daylight studio and sat him on a chair so that the light source was slightly above him as well as to the side.
  • We used a 50mm lens so that we could get a close up shot of the subjects face.
  • A light meter was used to determine what settings we should use, which were are f5.6 and a shutter speed of 0.25 seconds.
  • We put the camera on a tripod to reduce camera shake and to get the correct angle.
  • We stood someone near to the window, but not in front of it, so they didn’t block the direct light from the window, but the did cast a shadow on the wall behind the subject.
  • The subject angled the glasses he was holding so that they showed the reflection of the window.

The RAW image results:


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