The Digital Photo Guy

More From Los Osos & CA Photo Festival

by on Sep.23, 2010, under Articles, Composition, Photos, Workshops

No More Exciting Landscapes or Flowers

Now, we’re into the druge, hard work part of the California Photo Festival. This is hard work but someone has to do it. We’re stuck in small studios for hours at a time, trying to wring the best photos we can from subjects that are selected for us. We don’t even have a say in subject matter.

     

Monica was David Mecey’s model. David is a former Playboy photographer and showed us how he lights models. When it came time for me to shoot Monica, my first test shot was way off on skin tone. I immediately suspected WB and asked the other guys what they were using. Everyone was at 5200K, the same as me. Thinking I had messed up, I took some more test shots and got the same funky skin tones. For the first time in ages, I freaked. I wasn’t sure what to do. Instead of just standing there acting bored or annoyed, Monica started cracking jokes and made faces to put me at ease, normally my role in making the model feel comfortable. I calmed down enough to shoot the rest of my series and thanked here for being such a great model. When I downloaded the images, all the skin tones were spot on. It turned out my LCD Brightness had somehow gotten misadjusted, causing all the weird skin tones.

Gaby was a model in Hanson Fong’s Posing & Lighting Workshop. Standing 6’3″, she was as friendly as she was striking. I’m particularly proud of this because I redeemed myself in front of the other students when I noticed the sunset mural on the wall. With Gaby seated, I got low and made the studio shot look like an outdoor beach shot. Hanson told me in mock pique, “Hey, you’re not supposed to make your Asian brother look bad!” He than copied my shot, the highest honor considering Hanson, when he was doing weddings, charged 5 figures.

     

On my next series, I noticed the fabric wall cover behind Gaby could be made to look like water. Now, with a little judicious cropping, I completed the sunset mirage.

Vanessa (last 2 photos) was also a model in Hanson’s class. With Vanessa, Hanson showed us how a cute college co-ed could be transformed into an elegant, exotic woman just by readjusting the lights.

All the photos were taken with a Canon 7D and 24-105. Topaz Adjust was used on some of the photos but, for the most part, all images are SOOC.

As I said, this is tough, exhausting work but someone has to do it. I’m just glad I was able to save another photographer from all this drudgery. Tune in next time for more from the California Photo Festival in Los Osos, CA.

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