Tuesday, June 30, 2009



This weeks assignment was 'use everything you have learned and shoot something you want to shoot." Um, what? No pressure. (yeah, right) However, I had had an idea for another friend of mine for a while (you know who you are:-) but just could not get coordinated. So--we used it. I got a great 'grade' and assume 'it looks like professional shot' is a good thing:-) Lis was breeze to work with and brought a ton of 'gear'...I was very please with this session. (even if Lisa thinks she looked like "an early Keirsti Alley when she started her weight gain..sigh. (again) :-)

Lighting: (2) 500 watt bulbs with shoot through umbrellas approx. 2-3 feet away from subject on each side. a large, tri-fold 'flag' was placed at eye level to block any ambient light from the kitchen by window. And being white, also acted as a soft reflector on her face. A 'back light' was placed on the floor (500 watt--bare bulb--snooted) and highlighted her face/eyes as did a large silver reflector clamped to chain directly in front of the subject angled towards face. Uh, you should have seen my kitchen!!!

A few more shots:

TEST SHOT: who looks this good in a test shot????

Original concept-frilly apron, stocked kitchen...takeout. But she just looked too good in that dress to cover it up! And just made for a much 'sassier' shot.

Thanks again Lisa!!

Monday, June 22, 2009

Gobos/cutters/flags--Oh my!


Oh, poor Brian--a victim again after a mishap that rendered my first attempt at this assignment useless. (more on that later) This week was to utilize gobos/cutter/flags etc. to segment and shape utilizing any type of light diffused/hard/specular/soft--whatever...) This was MUCH more difficult than I dreamed and I am quite frankly, unimpressed with myself today...;-(

Set-up shot (nothing other than a 500w bulb) Note the crazy eyes...

Gobo added (shaped to look like window lighting streaking through blinds..) A small mirror was utilized to try and reflect the eyes...but after the clamp came loose and the mirror broke into pieces...the shard was smaller than I would have liked..and lit 1 eye! What a balancing act..I need an assistant..too bad he has become the model..)

Hmmmm,,,,what is he thinking....perhaps, 'I think I have had enough' (yes, this assignment ended with the quote "okay-I am done!" -promptly followed by the sound a beer top being popped. I wasn't done!!! (guess he was...)

To try and get the gobo to add more shadows I added a large flag to the left of the lens as I was getting all kinds of spill...ahhh..I then used a larger 'chunk' of mirror and almost lit both eyes... Note to self--don't; miss class again and not have a clue how to do the assignment! Ha Not bad all things considered...

Friday, June 19, 2009

With some friends, you always just pick up where you left off...

Had the privilege of spending a few days catching up with my friend Melanie and her family this past weekend in HH, SC. Though times have certainly changed from our carefree, wine-drenched days of our 20's; we just always seem to pick right up where we left off. So to practice my 'skilz' and capture some super fun times her children were having; I took these shots. (Think full sun, 1PM, no place for shade...ug. So though certainly not perfect shots by any means--I love that I had the chance to take them and spend some time with The Spicer's)

Miss Sydney Enjoying the pool after we were 'kicked out' of the ocean due to a school of shark

Mel's husband Steve and his 'mini-me', Shawn

Shawn working on his tan...

Bathing Beauty!

(nope--we did not pose her...she is 2!!!)

The Girls...

Sweet, sweet, Syd

Good to see you Spicer's!!!

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Assignment 4-demonstrating reflective light


Lessen this week: using the same subject--demonstrate very reflective lighting and the absence of that reflection.
Unintentional Lesson this week: Beauty is definitely in the eye of the beholder!

Miss Robin was good enough to 'donate' two hours of her time. At the end of which I rushed off to my laptop and was, admittedly, kinda pleased with myself! However, apparently I was the only one to think she look smokin'...her words "I look gross." sigh.

Photo 1--I utilized a shoot through umbrella very close to her face (but out of the shot--in most anyway) and to create the reflection I utilised 1 bare, 500 watts bulb on a small tripod slightly behind her left shoulder. (I think it would have been ever more reflective if I had the space in the studio (aka--my office) to get the light closer to he without being in the shot

Reflective Light

Absence of Reflective Light

Photo 2 (above) was nearly the same shot with the umbrella added to diffuse the light and thus, the reflection.

This was the 'shot in my head' when wanting to photograph Robin. For those that know her--she is a low maintenance, less-is-more kinda girl. Wavy voluminous hair, glossy lips and heels--definitely not her. (nor the martini glass) However, the flips-flops, Blue Moon beer--are. Minus the cords..I like it!

I think Robin found the complementary beer the only redeeming quality in this shoot as she loks happiest here! LOL

Lighting Assignment 3-Large vs. small light source

Large Light(above)

Small Light (below)

'Fun', non-assignment shot

Its Bri's turn to be my model (aka:victim) once again. With 15 minutes to shoot and one annoyed subject...I got my best grade to date. An 'A' Baby!! These were shot in the studio (aka-living room) with 2 500 watt halogen light sources. The first was shot with 2 shoot through umbrellas placed on either side. (LARGE light!) Below it, I utilized the same lighting set up sans one umbrella with a snoot (aka--large manila envelope masking tape wrapped around light source) to produce a more 'polarized' look. (SMALL light source) Have I mentioned I got an 'A?' ;-)

The last shot was not part of the assignment, but Bri is holding the light source slightly behind his shoulder. (little did I know 'highly reflective light' was going to be the next assignment...

Lighting Assignmnet 2: 2:1 ratio diffused light

So after approximately 30 minutes of 'stolen' reflectors, wrestling matches and messy, melty popsicles...here are the results:

(Okay...so, I only achieved a 'C on this assignment thanks to the extra reflection from the reflector being sat on...but it was well worth the laughs!!! )

How cute are these boys???? (soon to be a 3rd to add to the mix:-)

Sooo....you want to take childrens portraits????

Camera, check. Reflector...wait...where did the
reflector go??Camille's boys, Hayes and Ryhs, were tons of fun. See below for the 'outtakes' of assignment 2.

Rhys takes over the shoot!!

Not sure I can get a 2:1 light ratio like this....

Wrestling class or photo shoot??

Lighting Assignment 1-Hard/Specular Light

So...I am taking a 'lighting class' and trying to get a better understanding of some of the basics behind this hobby and thinking someday, who knows, I may turn it in to more than that. That said, I am playing 'catch' on posting these to try and see 'progress' in my shots.

Here goes: Assignment 1-Shot a subject demonstrating hard/specular light. Brian, my less-than-thrilled subject:

Photo 1- shot 5 PMish at an empty college stadium in Charleston, SC. (I still can not believe I neglected to take a picture of the entrance stateing: Welcome' to the Cougar Den....)

Assignment Grade- 'B'