If you’re keeping up with the work of photographer Keith Barraclough, then you might have noticed a number of recent portraits, taken around places such as L.A., Atlanta, Savannah, South Carolina, and Connecticut. What you might not know, however, is that all of those portraits were taken from Keith’s home in New York City(!). Through the use of an app called CLOS, Keith is able to do a complete virtual shoot, using remote controls and verbal instructions in order to get the shot that he wants. His wife and collaborator Kate explains the process as such:
“The subject downloads the App and opens a link sent by Keith to begin the photo session. The session works like a FaceTime call, so Keith can talk and give the subject verbal cues. The call is end-to-end encrypted, so as soon as the photographer and subject hang up, the camera control ends. The photographer does not have access to anything other than the camera itself during the session. The more recent the device model, the better the camera the better the lighting, the better the image quality.”
The subject picks the location and what to wear. Keith has a brief conversation on the phone to go over some logistics of how the app works, (time of day/best lighting, who’s holding the iPhone, etc). Once they are connected Keith does a quick walk-through of the space/environment and matches the lighting to a specific location along with the style/clothing they are wearing.
“A good example of this is Taylor in the pool (shot while she was in LA) and the Hermione shot of the hiking path and with Waldo and the train”. Keith continues to say, “They both have a very different feel but match what they are wearing and the magical element of the subjects. I also have a preconceived idea of what I want to do in a post using Snapseed (an app I use to process images). For the Hermione shot I wanted a location where she was “engulfed” within her environment and wanted to add a heavy vignette. The path with trees gave me the perfect setting. I could completely visualize what the final image would look like. To be honest that doesn’t happen all the time.”
Once the shoot is over, Keith is then able to do all of the necessary retouching using only his iPad (with an app called Snapseed). A truly virtual shoot, from beginning to end!
If you’d like to learn more about how the CLOS app works, you can check it out here. If you want to keep yourself updated on more of Keith’s virtual shoots, be sure to follow his official Instagram page.