Three. Main light, and two accent lights (along with a 200mm f2 and a 1.4x multiplier). I always enjoy working with smaller scope homes and areas since it challenges me to be creative instead of just trying to get it all in. Today I concentrated more on working with Kiara and some pieces of furniture rather than themes and stories.
This was done alongside her garage. Not much to look at in person, but with good lighting, a long lens and a good subject... it was easy!
Here's a link to Kiara's mini-slide show:
I cringe when someone calls me an artist, because I feel more like a craftsman than an artist. I worked long and hard to hone my craft. But when it comes to transgressing into "art", well, I just don't feel comfortable in that territory.
So why is the term in my busines name? It's there because that's always my goal. And sometimes it sneaks in... whenever I'm allowed to. I don't like jobs that tie my hands behind my back. So I try to accept only assignments that are open to the possibility of something artistic, exciting, or magical happening.
Such is the case with senior portraits. When trusted with the task of photographing a senior, I relish the opportunity to create imagery that transcends the norm, unrestricted, unsupervised. While I understand a parent's interest in watching this happen, I just can't give it my full attention while they're watching over my shoulder.
And so it was with Laruen today. The mom trusted me to be creative and I'm so proud to have delivered the goods. I showed her the work on my iPad shortly afterward. But I need my space DURING the process. If you trust me... I'll deliver. If you watch me... it can't happen.
Like the old sign in the auto service garage...
Auto service... $25 per hour
If you watch... $50 per hour.
If you help... $75 per hour.
I've mentioned this before in this blog... that you can't rely on weather forecasts around here. I checked the forecast for the weather during Carly's senior portrait session and "they" predicted 100% chance of rain at 6pm and 7pm... which are usually prime times that I need to be outside, for the best light.
OK, we decided to go ahead with the session anyway because EVERY time I panicked and rescheduled sessions in the past due to the absolute certainty of rain... it turned out fine. (One session would have been a bit muggy, but it never rained.) Well, it never rained during Carly's session, and the weather was perfect.
The image you're looking at was during a torrential downpour, hail, high winds and lighting. OK, so it really wasn't doing that. But the weather people predicted a 100% chance of that!
I know a lot of photographers and several of them have photographed quite a long list of famous people. Rock Tweeten, Craig Kienast, Kevin Jaraj, and Jim Lersh have photographed many well-known entertainers. Well, not to be outdone, I like to bring up the fact that I photographed a wedding for the son of TWO local hardware stores. Well, now I've topped that. I photographed the ownder himself (and his wife)!
OK, enough kidding. It was an honor to be able to photograph this portrait for Herb and Sue. They are two of the most well-liked and respected people in this area.
Ever since these things started cropping up, I've wanted to shoot around one. I finally got the chance today. This senior lived in sight of a wind farm. We drove there, but these things are so huge that it was a lot farther away than I thought!
Anyway, I was thrilled at the result I was able to do for for Sara.
Once again, as much as I shun the sun, when used effectively, it can lead to GORGEOUS results, as shown here. Aarika chose our Highlight session which is just a short & sweet morning session.... (and still available for summer sessions. Our next available evening session isn't until the end of September). But I watched the forecast for her photo session day and hard sun was predicted. Well, I KNOW the weather isn't always 100% predictable (see past posts!), but it looked pretty solid that we were going to have to deal with sunlight. And I know where she lives and that a high sun would be disastrous. OK, so I got on the phone and asked if we could start early... as in sunrise. She didn't mind. Cool!
We started across the road from her house in a field and got some great stuff before the sun was over the horizon and then some fun flare images. Then we needed to work in her yard where I could find some shade and control the light easier. As always, we got some great stuff, and I struggled to choose ONE to post here. This was my pick because it captured her cuteness (although anyone who knows her knows that she's cuter in person) while featuring the pastel, airiness that only a $5000 200mm f2 lens can do!
You know, some people think that to take "good pictures", the main thing you need is a good camera. Not true. Are good pots and pans necessary to make good food? Sure, I use an $8000 professional camera, but truthfully, I could do the same with a camera one tenth that cost. The camera only records what's in front of it. In this case, it's the LENS that definitely contributes more.
I'm also showing the setup shot to show what it looks like to the eye.
Now... I have to get some sleep! :)
It's no secret that sunlight is trouble for portrait photographers. But sometimes ya gotta deal with it. I chose to reflect it as an accent with my FuzzyFlector for this one. We did this a about two blocks from Olivia's home, since she lived in an area surrounded by homes. A little country post-processing finished the look.
Some entertainer was on the Tonight Show in the 1960s and said that, and it stuck with me ever since. Well, it sorta applied to Chloe's senior session. While I control a lot of what happens, sometime a spontaneous moment is way better than anything I could have done. This pose is a perfect example. Chloe moves and poses well naturally, so I tried to let her be her without too much of my over-posing. This was something she did in between poses I suggested. As is often the case, that's better than any pose I could make her do. Of course, most 17 year olds need guidance for what looks good in the camera. But I'm always open to their ideas as well.
Anyway, here's a link to a few highlights from her senior session:
Sometimes when I see an image forming in front of me, I get a feeling from it that tells me where to take it in post production. Such was the case with this image. It was sunny, and we photographers know how difficult sunlight can be to work with. But we just have to have enough tools to make it work FOR us, not against us.
I went with an old photo effect on it to complete the look. I'm not big on after effects, partly because they're usually done to mask a bad underlying image. So when I do it... I do it with purpose, discretion, and restraint.