Saturday, November 28, 2009

Photography Workshop - Peoria, Illinois 2010

I'm much excited to kick off 2010 with the Peoria Supershoots event. This has been one of those pillar events that I can't imagine missing. The amount of information that is shared within one studio over two days is practically endless. It would be rather difficult to walk away without learning and improving your skills.

The environment is relaxed with music and drinks and many people with different backgrounds in photography. There are 6+ studio setups where you may work in and alter. If you don't know how, there will be several mentors there to help you along in setting up and metering many different lighting setups.

I happen to be a mentor at this event, so if you would want to work together, come, and make it happen.

This is Lauren being professional, rocking the camera, and looking amazing as she always does. Thanks girl!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

This ain't yur typical mid-west type of fotograph!

I retouched for six hours today and felt that I would share my efforts with you. Hope you don't mind. ;p

***click image for full size***

Actually, this image wasn't included in the six hours of retouching. This was my fun work after the other work.

I opened this image and stared at it for a minute or three and then said "DONE!" Easiest retouch ever. I enjoy retouching my own work because it helps me to pay attention to capturing better images for I don't have to retouch them that much.

Someone asked me the other day if I was a professional photographer. I was confused by the word 'professional' and replied "I'm a photographer." They understood something. Either that I didn't consider myself professional (hope not) or that I didn't care much for the use of extra titles. 'Professional' would indicate popularity and/or getting paid really well, I think. I don't really know. Anyhow, next time I will say "YES, I AM!" We are what people believe we are.

The St. Pete/Tampa Supershoots event was a blast. Great people there and lots of opportunity to capture images that have nothing to do with the shooting on a beach!

A big thanks to Tiffney for being a bright spirit during our shooting time. You rocked it!!

There is a Supershoots event coming up in January 9-10 (2010), here in Peoria, IL. I will be there for the two days mentoring and also instructing a 2 hour course on digital retouching and post production techniques. If you are interested, please write me at

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Band Photography on Location

Last weekend I had the honor of shooting with a local Chicago band, "Lady Parasyte." (Shot in Chicago)

We called ahead several locations before coming to a two sided bar, one side that was open all day, and the other side didn't open until later at night. So, we asked to shoot for a few hours and they said yes. Totally awesome location and very generous of the owner to allow us to shoot for several hours at their place of business.

This was the first shot out of post. Here is a rundown of my thought process and the setup...

1: F-STOP Decision
I started by wanting to shoot at 2.8 for I could keep the subject and the background separated as much as possible. I found my exposure to be f/2.8 @ 1/50 ISO400. (17mm...with my 20D that is about 35mm) But, of course the lighting on the subjects wasn't that great. It was all from above them. So, I needed to use a strobe to throw light onto their faces.

2: Strobe Light
I placed a strobe on a stand way up high to the right of me and pointed it down towards the subjects. I put it high for the subjects shadows would be on the ground and not behind them. I metered it a bit higher that f/2.8 (f/3.5?) for it would show up in the image. It looked okay, but the light could be more focused.

3: Light Modification
I added a 20 degree grid to the strobe for it would focus tighter on the subjects and not spill too much around them. Perfect! It looked much better. *TEST SHOT* Okay, it's all looking good except that the bottom part of the image had lots of dark areas in it. I was loosing detail.

4: Fill Light
I added another strobe with a silver umbrella about 8 feet behind me for a fill light. This alleviated the shadows getting plugged up, but also made the entire image brighter. Since I was basing my exposure slightly to the left, that was okay by me. *CLICK* There's it is.

5: Post Production
I desaturated all colors except for red and strengthened the vignette my grid strobe was already making.

I'll be shooting in St. Pete, Florida for the weekend.
Happy Shooting!