This past week has been loaded up with photography classes here in Phoenix. There were several introduction classes, a fine art nudes workshop and some private lessons. Next week is just as busy with more intro classes and another fine art nude workshop.
In between I had a chance to shoot some motorcycles featuring some cool new lighting.
So many things happened this week it was great. I did a shoot for the feature story in Automotive News. Can’t wait to get a copy. I love automotive photography.
Taught several photography workshops this past weekend. Both fine art nudes and pin-up photography. Everyone had a great time. This week I will be teaching an introduction to photography class for DSLR’s. Click the workshop link to learn more about it.
A few boudoir photography clients came in for their photo shoots. More lucky guys out there will be getting some great gifts.
And a few more maternity and newborn photography clients came in for their shoots. You never know when the newborns shoots are going to happen, so it’s always a pleasant surprise.
I have a large charity pin-up shoot scheduled for next weekend. It’s going to be a blast.
I love to photograph cars, so when I had the chance to photograph this Lamborghini Murcielago I was more than happy. Automotive photographers love it when we get the chance to shoot exotic cars.
Took some fun boudoir photos which I gave a retro look. I like the to every once in awhile have some fun and give a photo a unique look that varies from my standard styling.
And I ended the week with a newborn photography session. It was twin girls who were not even a week old yet. I should have a photo for you to see with the parent permission next week.
Variety is the spice of life so the say and it sure helps keep the creative eye working in photography. I love it when I have to change up my thinking from one shoot to the next. This week, this lucky photographer shot maternity, headshots, boudoir, pin-up, products and even automotive.
Frequently I will have clients come in and wish to combine to photographic needs. Often I will have a boudoir client who also needs to have a headshot done. Boudoir is often also combined with modeling.
By combining a clients needs in to a single photography session, I can give my clients some great value.
Of course one of my favorite parts of my job is when a photographer is needed to shoot an amazing car like this Ferrari Testarossa. This car was on-site for a fashion photography class that was being held at my studio and I took a few minutes to grab photographs of this beauty.
Next week is already jammed packed with a great variety. I can’t wait to see what else is on the horizon.
Custom street rods are really fun to photograph. This car shown here is a frequent show winner and as a photographer I felt lucky to shoot such an amazing looking car. The removable hardtop made getting a shot of the interior so much easier. Of course the suicide doors just create a great overall look.
This week I faced the fun challenge of photographing a black custom Mercedes in my studio. As with all black cars, dealing with the many reflections was key to success.
It is always worth the effort as I really enjoy photographing cars. From classic hotrods to amazing exotic cars, each presents their own set of challenges for the photographer. Finding the perfect angles to show off the curves of a fender, or just the right type light to bring out details hidden in shadows are just a few of the problems I enjoy solving.
I’ve got another great car coming into the studio soon that will provide the opportunity to use some new techniques.
Automotive or motorcycle photography in the studio presents some interesting challenges. This week I will take a look at some of the options for dealing with these details.
First of all they are big and don’t move easily to “adjust their pose”. Motorcycles are a bit easier to photograph as they can move easier, but cars or trucks are just a lot of work. Careful planning is required.
The first thing you need is a studio with enough space to hold the car and allow the photographer to get far enough away to shoot it. If you are too close you will need to use your wide angle lens leading to shots where the vehicle will have a huge front end for example. Sometimes this look can be desired, but more often than not, it is problematic. I prefer to be a good 20 or more feet to keep proportions correct.
For moving the car around, car wheel dollies are great. One goes under each tire and you can jack it up then basically push the car in any direction you want, even spin it in a circle. They are not a cheap tool, but if you shoot a lot of cars, they are well worth the investment.
The other most difficult thing to deal with is reflections. The whole automobile is one great big mirror. Chrome on motorcycles can be even worse. And of course the classic black hot rod looks great, but shows everything. A very clean studio area is critical. Anything that must remain should be pushed as far away as possible from the car. This includes yourself and your assistants.
I actually have my assistants step off set behind a wall in my studio. I wear black to help hide my reflection. Another reason for keeping the photographer to automobile distance large during the shoot, is that it makes the reflections much smaller and easier to deal with in post.
Lighting is another key. You need a large soft light from above for most automotive work. Since I shoot on white, I have painted my light stands and cords white to hide them in reflections. Nothing more annoying than a beautiful white highlight on a car with a light stand jumping out at you.
Feel free to contact me with any questions. And if you are in the Phoenix area, I do rent my studio to other photographers.
This week presented a challenge, off to the beach for to photograph a motorcycle. Shooting a motorcycle or car at a beach is typically very difficult. The biggest challenge is the motorcycle will sink into the soft sand of the beach. On a soft sandy beach I would need bury a layer or two of plywood just below the surface of the beach and then smooth it out after placing the bike.
Next challenge is timing as the tide will be moving either in or out, and depending on the location this can be a foot or two, to hundreds of feet if the slope of the beach is very gradual. One of my favorite beaches the low and high tide lines are tyically 200-300 feet apart. The smallest tide swings on at the half moon phases.
And of course waves will also present a challenge as they roll in and out. Salt water is very bad for vehicles, so keeping them dry is a priority. I would recommend wearing a helmet before you try this out so make sure you read motorcycle helmet reviews online.
Of course, no one likes to think too much about getting involved in an accident while on their motorbike, but mistakes can happen and therefore it is crucial that you take steps to ride safely. A friend of mine recently went on a motorcycle trip to Las Vegas and he told me that in las vegas motorcycle accidents are unfortunately very common. He also said that these incidents sometimes lead to lawsuits and personal injury cases. Consequently, please do as much as possible to avoid getting into difficulty when on your bike. Especially during a photoshoot.
In this case the beach had a hard area that was not sandy at all in this area. Being hard and dry the bike could stand on its own. The area was sheltered enough and the sea was very calm, usually mornings are the best time to find this calmness.
In the end, everything came together. When things were set-up, I liked where the sun was, creating a good shadow, the tide was moving in slowly to position and the sea was calm. With the addition of some supplemental lighting to fill in and create some sparkle, it came together as I had imagined.