Shooting Brittanee

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Sometimes you just get lucky, real lucky. I found a private residence in Jacksonville Oregon with a cool looking bus in the driveway. I poked my head into the huge garage and began chatting with the owner, who by chance loves to restore cars and collects antiques. I told him I’m a photographer just passing by, and he offer me to shoot around his residence. I jumped all over that offer. Brittanee and I found four locations around the residence and the final shots are in the Urban Odyssey gallery of this website. The bus shot is my favorite because of the difficult lighting scheme it took to pull it off. I had one speedlight gelled yellow and sat it on the bus floor pointing up. I ended up using a straight reflector on a studio head pointed tight on Brittanee’s face. The gas pump shot was fun too. I used a softbox just to the left of the camera frame, and a speedlight behind Brittanee to give her a rim light on her arm and hair. Thanks to Chris and Steffanie for letting me invade your home.

Blue Monk shoot

Shooting in bars can be very challenging but so worth the effort when you come away with an image you are proud of. This shot is one of my favorite images in my portfolio. Taken at a PDX Strobist meetup in December 2009, the group had permission to shoot at a cool restaurant/bar called the Blue Monk in the Belmont district in Portland. I can’t think of any other session that I had spent so much time experimenting with the lighting scheme to get it right before putting the model into the shot. I think I got like eight shots total with the model before he had to go some where else. There was an old piano downstairs in the jazz bar sitting in the corner next to the stage. When I saw the piano I just felt something interesting can be lit with a model playing the piano. Everyone has shot that image of a musician playing on stage but I wanted to light it like no other. I decided instead of lighting the whole dang scene why not constrict the light and make it moody. I started first with the Canon Speedlight gelled with 1/4 CTO inside the piano to light the inside of the piano. What I didn’t expect was that this same light inside the piano put light on the front side of the model and also splashed a little light onto the keyboard. The second Canon Speedlight was setup to the model’s right about four feet away from his face for that soft rim light on the face and hat. The third light was another Canon speedlight boomed above the model’s head and shoulder to light the model. This shoot has reinforced to always bring grids, a boom, gaff tape, flash light, and whiskey to all indoor shoots.

Juls afloat Willamette River

My friend Juls is an aspiring fitness model and she was willing to work with me to add to her portfolio. I wanted to do something really dramatic outdoors but also to show off her powerful physique. I had attended a PDX Strobist meetup and invited Juls to join me on the Willamette River. I came up with the idea of having Juls float on water but didn’t know how I could get that illusion easily. I ended up bringing two old dinner tray tables, the kind that grandma had serve on when I was a little boy. I sunk the two tables side by side and just below the water line. BINGO, SHAZAM! The water was extremely cold and Juls went purple after 15 minutes when we called it quits. The behind the scene shot shows me on my belly in the sand, and two assistants holding softboxes to the left and right of Juls. Thanks Juls for braving the cold, thanks Luke Olsen for the behind the scene shot.

Snobist 2010

I really don't know why I always make goofy expressions when the camera is pointed at me. It just happens naturally what can I say. A few photographers, models, and a makeup artist rented a house in Government Camp Oregon for a weekend in late April. We were planning to shoot in the snow but it was too late in the snow season there was hardly any snow on the ground. Instead we got rained on and soaked. We made the best of it though and it was one of the most memorable weekends of shooting. We used our cars to scout out for shoot locations off of Hwy 26 and Hwy 35. We found that Hwy 35 has tunnels that run under the highway to provide a path for snow melt water to get across the highway. John and I found this tunnel which I think is the White River, a tributary of the Deschutes River. John and Ben had some great ideas of how to light this scene and I threw in my 2 cents. The three of us shot this scene and came out with some awesome captures. We went back to the same location the next morning with more photographers and a different model. The cool thing about the next morning was the makeup artist Jesse and some photographers made the model's dress from a plastic garment bag and trash bag.