Tips for Photographers Shooting Body Paint
I shoot all of my own images for face paint and body paint. Tabitha Anna, from www.TabithaAnnaArtistry.com, and I recently painted a piece for a full page ad in Makeup Artist Magazine. Our design was centered around the character Gamora, from Guardians of the Galaxy. Proaiir Makeup asked me to do the piece as they provide all the makeup for the Guardians. To get all the detail out of a piece you want to paint specifically for the shot. Highlight and shadow are a must for painting but more importantly, for photographers.
You want to light the area as natural as possible. As artists so many photographers wash out the design with heavy lighting and try and correct it later with photoshop. These images you see before you are not photoshopped at all. These are pure photos. One of the things to avoid when shooting a body paint is flash. Flash can kill an awesome piece, the reason being, it washes away all the painted highlight and shadow and renders it based on the camera flash. Avoid flash at all costs. There may be exceptions to this rule and you know who you are, kudos to you if you are at that level.
You are looking for constant lighting, reason being you want to show all the nuances of the art work. I'm not saying brighten the room like the sun, light it as you want it to be. If you are going for a dark lit piece, your emphasis might be on an overall shot, possibly not for specifics. Those factors will vary, Consult your artist for specifics. If I spend 20 minutes shadowing in detail all the areas I want and then another 20 minutes gradating the highlight intensity to show different levels of depth with my highlight and shadow, to only get it washed away with a flash, someone's gonna die! LOL
If you are shooting outside, your artists should be skilled enough to know how to change their techniques when painting for a live viewing. For example, we body paint Miami quite often. During the summer time most event s are outdoors. Painting for a piece that's viewed 360 degrees is different and can be shot at any angle. Again, avoid flash at any cost.
If you are a photographer looking to start shooting body paint, make sure you consult with your artist on specific lighting to bring, especially if they are going for a specific look. If you have hired a body painter to do a shoot for you, don't go into it thinking you know all about photography, even if you do, you may not be a pro at body paint, leave that to the artist.