One of the things about popular places is that you get the same background over and over again. But what if you just step a bit off the beaten path? In that case, you might find something else entirely different.
Such was the shoot with Angela Liao, when we ventured into the alleyways just off the main street of Gastown. Here, we had many wonderful backgrounds from fire escapes, to a setting sun and graffiti.
The shots below were all done using a single umbrella softbox with speedlights to the left or right of the camera. The background was ever so slightly underexposed.
Here, this shot was done with a single bare speedlight from camera left to simulate the direct sun from a sunset.
The next shot was taken with a single speedlight behind Angela to separate her out from the wall. However, because I didn't have a second light to bring down the ambient exposure, I decided to use a gradient filter (with negative exposure) in Lightroom to darken the red wall behind her. I think this draws attention to her much more. Here are the before and after shots: