John is a Product, Portrait, and Landscape photographer from London, England. He was kind enough to allow me to try a hard light, strip-light style portrait of him. I really liked the results.
I know it’s considered bad form to say it, but as I was working on the close-up below, I kept thinking , “I’ve seen this before.” Then it hit me. Yep, there it was, plain as day:
“Kneel Before Zod.”
When I told him about it, he laughed. “That’s General Zod to you!”
(*I bow my head*) “Yes, my Liege.”
Anders Eriksson is a Still Life, Conceptual, and Lifestyle photographer from Stockholm, Sweden. Don Giannatti, whose studio we were invading for the weekend and our fearless leader of Project 52, had just finished working with him, and I wanted to take the light that I saw him working with a little farther, just to see “what if…”
Thank you, Anders, for letting me do that with you.
I worked with both Briana and Ivy at last year’s get-together, and was looking forward to another chance to work with both of them.
Briana consistently defies gravity.
I saw these pictures in my head as Ivy was getting ready in front of the makeup mirror. I asked a friend to hold up a black reflector card behind her as a backdrop.
Strong and confident. Gotta love that.
Thank you, Briana. Thank you, Ivy.
As part of the Phoenix Get-Together I mentioned in Part One, I got a chance to work with several wonderful people. Adrian was a joy to work with, willing to try anything I could throw his direction.
We started in a room that had a ceiling skylight, which gave this shaft of light in the middle of the room, but not on the edges of the room. Playing with the feel of it, we got these together.
Early that afternoon, a few of us headed into downtown Phoenix. Fortunately, the weather was still mild that day, and not oppressively hot. We found a nice set of pillars to use as a backdrop, and got this:
Thank you, Adrian, for letting me work with you!
Last weekend, I went to Phoenix, Arizona to meet with a group of people I have had the pleasure of talking to across the past year during Don Giannatti’s Project 52. We had several photographers descend on his studio for a weekend of shooting, silliness, more shooting, dinner, more shooting… Two photographers were here from Sweden, one from London, England, one from Canada, a couple from the East Coast of the United States, me from the West Coast, and one local to the Phoenix area. All too soon I had to come home, while they took off for a week in the wilds of northern Arizona. Next year, I would love to be able to join them for that part!
As for this past weekend, I had a blast. I got to work with some wonderful people, and try an idea or three. Here are some of the behind-the-scenes shots. I’ll show my best across the next couple of posts.
Hunting the ever elusive Still Life Shot
Angelic? Yeah, not so much. (*Grin*)
Okay, one for real before I go.
We were given a layout and a topic of “Cooking With Chili” over at Project 52. I came up with this.
Now, me being me, I just couldn’t leave well enough alone. I had all of these wonderful items, and an idea… The bread was delicious!
I had a fairly nice couple of recent afternoons making some portraits for some people who wouldn’t otherwise get them. Two were shy and uncertain to have them made. A third is a cameraman for a local news agency, and also a photographer in his own right. He said it was nice to be on the other side of the lens for a change.
I am happy to say that all were really pleased about their images.
My neighbor, Bill, was gracious enough to let me borrow his motorcycle for a day to work through some ideas I wanted to try.
He even allowed me to do a photo of him with his motorcycle as evening fell. Thank you for the opportunity to work with you, Bill!
About a year ago, I was having a conversation with one of the other teachers on my main school site. I was thinking that it would be nice to photograph her in a sun dress, back lit by the sun in an open-air light hearted way. That didn’t happen. Ah, well. Time passes, but she kept the idea in mind. This fall, she brought up the idea of me photographing her family. She wanted the family to look like they were up against a police lineup height chart with a caption that read, “We can explain…” I told her that I had never done anything like that, but I was willing to try it.
I did a practice run or two a couple of weeks before they showed up, just to see if I could do it. I took a tape measure, and photographed the wall space. I made note of how high certain things were – the cabinet shelf height, the electrical plug, the light switch. Then I made a height chart from that, lining up the height markings. I pre-set my lights the evening before the family arrived. I’m glad I did that because they arrived about a half hour earlier than I as expecting. Across the next hour, I photographed them as a grouping and also as individuals so that I could composite the best postures into an overall photograph. I also adjusted my lighting to get a few pictures just of the little one. Between the crying fits and the parents trying to get his attention, I managed to get at least one really nice shot of him, for which I am very glad. She was really pleased with the outcome of both of these. So was I.
My daughter has this penguin piñata that is going to be a part of an upcoming party. We do not expect it to survive the party…
I thought I would get some practice in for myself developing this concept shot.
The Art Director then said that she wanted to use more lights. Okay, she’s eight… Those of you with kids, you understand!