Diana (Stranger #96/100), London Shoreditch

After a few hours on Brick Lane the 100 Strangers meet up started drifting West toward Liverpool Street station and the end of the day.

As I headed that way, I saw Diana, Chanel and Davide passing in the other direction; three psychology students headed out to Brick Lane for an evening together.

Diana had an incredible raw intensity to her expression as they spoke, so even without a firm idea of a background in mind I leapt in front of them and they were kind enough to stop.

We wandered up a side street where Iain was just finishing a stranger shoot on the other side and he kindly agreed to come and help hold lights as we set up across from him.

I opted for a background a lot like that in my portait of Emma back at #44, where the jumble of vintage shutters and doorways would give a sense of the street and the jumble of daily life, against which Diana could stand like the key point of attention, throwing it into insignificance. I’m not sure the 100mm macro I’ve used for all my strangers project is the best lens for this, per se, yet I quite like the way it renders this kind of scene nonetheless.

Our shoot was punctuated with moments when Diana would burst into laughter and smile, but on a penny she could turn that dark, beacon-like stare that had first captured my attention.

Thank you Diana and for getting in touch through Facebook – I hope you and your friends like each of your portraits! Good luck with your studies!

Info for Strobist;

There’s lots of ambient in this one, but the key light comes from a Canon 600EX-RT with clip on diffuser, fired with a ST-R3-ET on ETTL at -1 EV through a 43″ white shoot through umbrella boomed out on a normal light stand to hover downwards in front of Diana’s face. Thanks Iain for holding that! Meanwhile, there’s a 1.2m white reflector just below shot parallel with the umbrella. It looks a little odd – the umbrella pointing at the reflector like a giant empty burger bun, and the subject just stood behind it, but I really like the soft but inky light it creates.

This is portrait #96 of my 100 Strangers Project – check out the group page and get involved.

Still catching up – thanks for everyone’s patience!

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