Faux Natural Morning Light

4 03 2010

This shot was actually made about 3pm and on a cloud covered day! The door you see is actually an interior door-it opens into another room-not outside.  So, to make it look like bright daylight-I used my AB800 and 5ft soft box. I put the soft box right in the door frame, filling it up.  Triggered it full power and got the results you see here. Beautiful soft light.  The white draped fabric over the door glass diffused the light, but the burst next to her head gives us a little interest.

You may recognize Amanda by now. I shoot with her quite often and I’m not sure she is capable of a bad picture! She is always so patient when I get on my, “let me try this”  kicks!  Thanks Amanda!


A New Look for Love!

1 01 2010

A Lovely Couple

I love to play with light. This image was taken with an Alien Bees strobe- bare bulb and a 7 inch reflector directly behind the couple. More than 20 shots were taken until I found the sweet spot I was looking for.

Because of the camera angle, the soft light wraps around the young lady’s face and her expression is captured nicely. The profile and the harder shadow shows masculinity in his face.  This is such a great portrait. It shows their closeness as a couple and is a little different than the normal portrait look.  Today’s younger people are looking for something different and you must experiment a little to find that new look.  So now I have another trick to add to my bag.  Continually experimenting with light will pay off!


20 12 2009


This image is truly a keeper! The little girl was pretty shy around the camera,  so it was,  “get ’em when you can” on this session.  But actually, this probably wouldn’t have turned out so nice if you tried to stage it. The real expressions are always better, you just have to be ready for them. Definitely some lessons learned. Have camera ready! Watch the subject closely! Shoot fast!

Downtown Girl

17 10 2009

AGP Amanda Downtown22

Amanda and I shot a few minutes downtown the other day. The light was perfect-really overcast…in essence a gigantic soft box.  I shot natural light because my portable flash was on the blink when we arrived. I would have liked to give her just a slight boost of light in her face and also I then could have lowered the ISO a bit. But they turned out good. Nice soft light and the colors come out well.

Stylin’ and Profilin’

20 09 2009


I thought this was a cool profile shot of Naomi Noelle.  I used a 10 degree grid on an AB800 camera left and made her star into it! (how mean, huh?)  This grid really controls the spill of light but still has hard shadows since it doesn’t diffuse the light.  It makes hard shadows, that  I think,  looks pretty cool. The hat makes the shot also.

Natural Light (not the beer)

22 07 2009

YAG113008017Certain times of day just has that “magic light” that photographers love. It’s when the sun gets low in the sky and it is better than any artificial fixture could ever be – If  it is the look that you want.  Direct sun can be tricky to utilize if not exposed for properly. As in Yacine’s portrait above, you see the highlights on his face blown out (overexposed). But the rest of the image is pretty well dead on.

Because a camera doesn’t “see” as many f/stops, or range of light as the human eye does, we have to figure out what we want. A little blown out highlight here and there and the rest of the image properly exposed to show the detail-or-the highlights exposed properly and the rest way too dark? It is a conscious decision we must answer in most natural light situations. It might be easier if the subject was posed where all of his body was in the same light…but that would be pretty boring. So we must make do with the light we have  – or – use a reflector or flash to fill in the dark spots where we need it.

There was no flash or fill from a reflector used here. The lens was a 50mm prime and I dont think the blown out highlights on his cheek harms the image at all. In fact, I think it adds a little drama.

True Blue

25 06 2009

20080728_IMG_0538smMakeup artist and hair dresser Jerry Rogers and I made a trip down to Houston to shoot.  This portrait will not appeal to many, but I think it has a certain quality about it that makes it special to me.

A photographer sets the tone for a shoot.  By that I mean, when everyone gets together, whatever mood the photographer is in usually gets translated into his/her work by the model. If the photog is happy, excited, stressed, whatever-that shows in the images. After several hours of shooting, we had all gotten to know each other more and everyone was a bit more relaxed. This image was taken at the end of about a 6 hour day of shooting. This style of fantasy/concept makeup just wouldn’t work with a silly grin or a cheesy pose.  So in this case, simple is best and we let the makeup-hair and her relaxed expression tell the story. (which is all up to the viewer to decide what the story is)  There was really no intended message or editorial line that we were trying to convey…it’s just a cool picture of a girl in some artsy makeup.  But if this image “speaks” to someone-then great. We were in the market for something different when we shot this…and I think we acheived just that.