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Behind the scenes portrait photoshot

Dance portraits Feat. Angelina Rakova

A portrait session at the showroom Toulouse where we got to use some of their prototype dresses, a wonderful ballerina that you probably have already seen with me in the past. These are some of the ingredients for this session… Of course, if you wish to know more about all this, the video and gallery are down below!

I’ve been there before, but haven’t posted any footage on YouTube. If you are a premium member, you will probably recognize this place. It will close down soon, if not already, so I will probably not work there anymore.



This time I brought a flash with me... that behaved strangely. The Godox AD300 pro changed its settings mid-shoot and sometimes fired all by itself. This never happened to me before so I have to investigate this further. Have you ever had this issue before? With Godox flashes in general? Please share your experience in the comments below, I really want to know. Other than that, the session went smoothly. This is what happens when you already know the model and are familiar with the space.


Unfortunately, we were not there at the best time of the day, this is why the flash was a nice option to have. Like the last time I wanted to take advantage of these big windows and sometimes it just wasn't possible.


I primarily worked with the GF 50mm f/3.5 R LM WR and GF 80 mm f/1,7 R WR lenses with the Fujifilm GFX 100s. We stayed in the main room for this one and played as much as possible with the environment.


Angelina Rakova (Toulouse - France)

Fujifilm GFX100s + GF 80 mm f/1,7 R WR

1/160sec f/1.7 ISO 100


Basic intention, feel, and composition were given each time to the dancer. I was not looking for a performance, just simple portraits. I know Angelina can improvise a bit so I gave her a bit of room to express herself. The following images were actually done without the flash. After a few shots, I preferred the mood without it.


Angelina Rakova (Toulouse - France)

Fujifilm GFX100s + GF 80 mm f/1,7 R WR

1/160sec f/1.7 ISO 100




And this is where it got tricky. There was suddenly not enough light reaching her from the windows, because she was in between and not directly in front of one, and probably a few clouds got in the way. So I placed my flash behind her above her head, facing the white wall and mirror in front of her. This was enough to compensate for the abrupt change.

Angelina Rakova (Toulouse - France)

Fujifilm GFX100s + GF 50mm f/3.5 R LM WR

1/160sec f/3.5 ISO 250


Did I mention these windows yet? I know I am obsessed with them, I've already made these shots before. Same place, different models, and different camera and focal lengths. The sun was hitting the window sideways. I said earlier that it wasn't the best time of the day to shoot there, but we managed to make it work.

Angelina Rakova (Toulouse - France)

Fujifilm GFX100s + GF 80 mm f/1,7 R WR

1/320sec f/1.7 ISO 50


With all these dresses around us, I just couldn't resist playing with them. A huge thanks to Céline to let us use some of these prototypes. She is also the person you see throwing the dress and doing Angelina's makeup!


Angelina Rakova (Toulouse - France)

Fujifilm GFX100s + GF 50mm f/3.5 R LM WR

1/200sec f/3.5 ISO 320


I usually post my images in chronological order, so these are really the last images we took. We just placed the dress on the floor, I only used one light placed camera left. Nothing fancy with the pose, I just asked Angelina to follow the main light source.

Angelina Rakova (Toulouse - France)

Fujifilm GFX100s + GF 50mm f/3.5 R LM WR

1/200sec f/3.5 ISO 320


What else can I say? Sometimes we don't need much. I hope I will be able to solve my flash problem soon, this is unacceptable, even from Godox! I will keep you updated on this.

I also recently decided to switch to another camera for this type of work, but I will tell you more about this soon. Don't worry, it will not be that crappy clickbait post: "Why I switched from this to that brand", I just realized something about my current work, and I believe a change is necessary.


A new short dance film, with its Behind the Scenes video, is on the way. I should stay home a bit in the coming weeks, so I will try to share more content in June.


I will also organize a giveaway for all my French and European friends (Sorry!) in the coming weeks but only on Instagram… so please join me there and look out for that!



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