Now that I’ve moved on a developed a few other photography techniques it’s time for me to explain an older one I used a good bit throughout the 2012 wedding season. I call it prisming (others are starting to call it “hurding”) but it’s really just reflecting images in front of your camera lens using a prism. It took me a while to try a variety of prisms before I found the perfect one (for me).
Many photographes have used things such as iphone screens or mirrors to create interesting and artistic looking images, but I’ve found that using a 6 inch triangular prism works best for me because you can twist the prism into creating a curve and bend-like distortion of your surroundings. It takes a little more practice than just holding it up to your camera lens and reflecting stuff. This makes things look much more natural in my opinion. It doesn’t scream “cheesy!” “something done in photoshop!” because, well it isn’t done in photoshop.
You also get the ability to create a natural rainbow effect in the right angle and lighting situations
But it’s also proven to be a very versatile tool for me. You don’t have to go crazy with bending and rainbows for it to create really unique looking images.
It’s a pretty simple techinque, but much like freelensing and the brenizer method it takes a LOT of practice to pick up on the nuances and characteristics of using it.
Here is a video taken with my nikon d4 demonstrating the real time effects of the technique
I talk a lot more about how I actually rotate the prism and look for situations that it’ll yeild the best results at my workshops (yes I will also be having one in the US this year), but I encourage you to go out and give it a try yourself. The key is just having it with you all the time so when the right situations arise… you’re ready for it.
I can’t recommend trying this enough. Pick up a prism (heck – pick up anything you can shoot through) but decide on something and stick with it. It’s fun to try tons of different objects to shoot through and almost anything will make an image look “different,” but the key is actually sticking with the same item over and over so you start to pick up in the unique characteristics of it and eventually learn to use it quickly and effectivly — which we all know is incredibly important in the field of wedding photography.
This prism is just what’s worked best for me. I got mine here.
Photography by Washington DC Wedding Photographer Sam Hurd