ShadowMask Part 2: Proof of concept 1

After cutting out the first gobo the plan was to test how well the overall concept worked in the studio environment using digital.

Planning diagram

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Studio setup


Actual lighting diagram

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The overall concept looks like it will work well with a little bit of tweaking especially with the light not associated with the gobo.

Still need to test using a “negative” gobo and then move onto a full scale test using large format film…

As I think about the overall project more and more I think it might end up being centered around “spirit animals” with each individual choosing which animal they most closely associate with.

More to come 🙂

Simon (@darkhalide)


Greetings… Its been a while


If you are looking for more recent stuff try @darkhalide on Instagram

Blog has been a bit neglected of late but I am starting my first real project in quite a long time and thought this was probably the best place to put my thoughts, trials, failures, successes…

Anyway the project is a group of images for exhibition using my large format 4 x 5 Cambo camera which has also been sadly neglected sitting in its box in my garage for longer than I can remember.

The concept is to use cutouts (or gobos) to create shadows or highlights on portraits. This is done by using a snooted studio light so as to not spill too much light around the gobo.

To create a gobo I have been printing out images onto framing matte board and then cutting them out with a craft knife.

So far I have cutout a few gobos…

I plan to play around with both positive masks as well as negative masks so see which one will work best or possibly a mixture of both…

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Some shots from last week when I had a couple of sick children during school holidays and a kowhai tree outside my window.

Tui 1

Tui 2

Tui 3

Nikon D90, Nikon 80-200mm f2.8 Lens

Feather Scannergram Triptych

Been a while… Playing with my scanner again


Canon CanoScan 9000F Scanner.


2 Horses

Seen at the Petone fair a couple of weeks ago…


Rolleiflex 2.8 E, Ilford HP5+ 400 ISO Film, CanoScan 9000F Scanner



Demi Half Frame Print

Finally got round to printing a shot from my old Canon Demi S (deceased)

With the 6×6 enlarger mask I made I can only print 3 frames at a time so I might have to experiment with a slightly larger mask and hope the enlarger handles it. Hopefully I can get up to 5 frames printed…

Half Frame Cemetary

Canon Demi S, Ilford HP5+ 400 ISO Film, CanoScan 9000F Scanner


Darkroom Action

I have been teaching a spot of darkroom lately. Its nice to be back and playing with prints again.

Here go a few print that I used for example for the students…


Tissue Paper

Tissue Border

Tissue paper border




Cellophane and Tissue paper.

Lost Civilisation

After all the flooding a couple of weeks ago it is strange the things you find washed down streams…


Rolleiflex 2.8 E, Ilford HP5+ 400 ISO Film, CanoScan 9000F Scanner.

Small Studio

Sometimes you just don’t have that much space to work with 🙂

I ended up shooting from across the hall…

Small Studio

Nikon D90, Sigma 12-24mm Lens

Shooting From the Hip

I haven’t had much of a chance to go out shooting lately and to be perfectly honest I’m feeling a bit rusty.

Need to brush up on my distances by eye 🙂


Rolleiflex 2.8 E, Ilford HP5+ 400 ISO Film, CanoScan 9000F Scanner.

Fire Dragons

No Photoshop involved. Straight form the camera

Dragon-2 Dragon-1


Nikon D90, 50mm f1.8 Lens, 3200 ISO. (No Photoshop)


Garage Studio

A bit of garage studio time today…