Portrait of a Pachyderm
I was able to capture this image after waiting patiently for nearly an hour. This big guy finally decided to give me a much appreciated short span of his attention. The more I waited, watched, and studied this huge subject, the more I was simply amazed by the texture and roughness of his skin. The fine details of the texture on his forehead and trunk were amazing. I found it quite magical at how gracefully and silently they can move their great frames and bulk! Heartfelt thanks to this “gentle giant” for his time and cooperation at my attempts to capture the moments he offered my lens.
Equipment used: Nikon D700, nikkor 70-200 2.8 lens, nikkor x2 teleconverter.
Software Used: Adobe Lightroom 4, Adobe Photoshop, Topaz Labs Details Extractor, Topaz Labs Black and white Effects 2.
Sometimes, when the light is right and the camera position is right, and the exposure is right you get the most beautiful images. BUT….sometimes…if you pay attention, a photographer can actually capture the beautiful soul of a person regardless of the light, or camera angle, or exposure…just being there at that moment and being ready to press the shutter release.
As you can see, I removed all the color, the background and foreground, the scenery at the location, and still, her soul just comes shining through. As most of you know, I am recently retired from the military and have become a full time “college boy”, studying for my BA in Photography. Well, with all the math, English design, and research work…I am painfully short on maintaining my photography skills (or, shutter release anxiety!!). So, when Laura asked if I could take some images of her wearing her mother’s wedding dress..of course I agreed. Then, she wanted to know if would mind shooting the images ..ON THE BEACH…near sunset….really??? NOW I was really excited about the photo-shoot While Laura is not getting married anytime soon, I really had a chance to play around with camera angles, lighting, and even some editing tricks and ideas. I hear her and her mother are quite happy with the results (bonus!), and I am thrilled to be back out on the beach at my fav time of day, doing what I love to do. Several of her images are quite lovely (both color and black and white) but this one, just stood out to me to share with everyone. I hope you enjoy the image, and feel free to check my gallery of the entire shoot with her.
Location: Kiawah Island Beach, SC
Equipment used: Nikon D700, Nikkor 24-70 2.8 VR lens
(back to the basics here; no reflector, no flash, no tripod)
note: this is nearly a 1:1 crop from a much larger total shot
Heather is a fitness instructor and fitness model, I had the honor of being one of her first photographers working with her on the total model concept of body, mindset, and expressions in her style of modeling. I have several more images of her (coming soon) of fashion, fitness, and swimwear modeling, so please stay tuned.
This image and others in this series were shot in Myrtle Beach, SC , we began our session at sunrise. White balance can and does constantly change during those first few minutes as the sun rises above the horizon. However, one of the hardest challenges I fasted during this style of shooting was the slow shutter speeds required for low ISO settings. The VR lens is extremely used for helping the photographer keep the image steady but it does nothing to keep the subject’s movements frozen. Also in this image, if you look very closely you can see that since I was using a wide open aperture of 2.8 on a 70-200 VR lens at about 180mm, Whilw trying to cover all the bases..lighting, pose, expression, angle, point of view, framing, iso, shutter speed, aperture, white balance, fill light, etc…I allowed my concentration on the focusing point to alter, resulting in my focusing point to land on the model’s right cheek instead of her right eye. With such a wide open aperture, the left side of her face in “soft” instead of being tach sharp. Lesson learned! I now use an assistant on all my model shoots now.
Location: Myrtle Beach, SC, USA
Equipment used: Nikon D700, Nikkor 70-200 2.8 VR lens, soft gold reflector for fill light provided by a single SB900, mother nature’s own sunrise light as key light.
This young woman wanted to do a portrait session showing her softer side and bringing the out her personality. She is also a waitress and serves as a voluteer firefighter. She felt that showing her softer side while in her bunker gear would bring out the female sexiness, her toughness, and the part of her that cares deeply for her fellow human beings. I hope you like and appreciate her for taking this bold step forward in expressing herself with class, confidence, and character.
Location: South Carolina, USA
Equipment used: Nikon D700, Nikkor 70-200 2.8 VR lens, off camera Nikon SB900 strobe and a shoot through umbrella. Lighting is camera left at about 6′ from subject.
I think this one spotted me…..
Location: Columbia, SC
Equipment used: Nikon D300, Nikkor 70-200 2.8 lens, Nikkor 1.4x teleconverter
As always, this and all of my images are copyright protected and available for your viewing pleasure or for purchase as prints, wall art, key chains, mouse pads, etc…your support is greatly appreciated and helps tremendously in helping me to get out there and bring the images back here for your viewing pleasure. Thanks for your support, likes, and visits!
I shot this surfer coming in from an awesome wave ride. There was a storm brewing off the coast of Charleston, SC, USA and was quickly approaching the East Coast. As a result, a large number of surfers showed up to grab some unusually large waves. I don;t know who this surfer is, but I do know he is a local to Folley Beach, SC. and was having a LARGE time out there! This image is not model released and I post it here as editorial only, it is copyrighted so please respect that. Do not reproduce without my written consent, but do please enjoy the viewing of this image. More surfers to come, and many more of my ‘Scapes and even a few models.
Location: Folly Beach, SC, USA
Equipment used: Nikon D700, Nikkor 70-200 2.8 VR lens, 1.4 teleconverter, Induro CT213 tripod, Induro BHD2 ballhead
This young wife wanted to create some images with jeans, she states were inspired by Mrs. Rob Zombie in “House of 1,000 corpses”. Yes, the shoot went very well…except for the constant interruptions of several young men (and a few women), who wanted to know if they could hold the reflector or the strobe and help out with the shoot…..well, what were my crew members there for?? lolol…I guess I should consider adding a security team for some of my photoshoots.
I almost posted this in color, but I really feel the black and white version is quite impactful enough. I guess to really get the full impact of this session, you would of had to have been on the set with the music going, and as this was during October (yep, she was getting ready for the Halloween party week) you would have seen Vampirella holding the reflector, the Batman holding down the softbox and strobe, and A she zombie on make up and hair…And as this was also being shot on location near the river with huge rocks, boulders, dead trees and shadowed trails….it was quite the Rocky Horror Show (tongue in cheek). Well..it was suppose to be a fun shoot, vampires and batman, robin, wonder woman, a werewolf, heck, I even think Superman was there somewhere….lolol..it was fun though.
On the photography side…I know I cut off her head…grabbed this shot as I was falling backward (tripped over a zombie onlooker), but I still like the image!
Location: Columbia, SC
Equipment used: Nikon D700, Nikkor 70-200 2.8 VR lens, off camera reflector (camera right), one SB900 shot through a hand held small softbox (camera left), setting sunlight from in front of the model.
I have had several requests for another image of the photoshoot with the lovely Pheobe, so here is another. She wanted to do a spin on the Marilyn style and I believe we ended up with several great images from the shoot.
Location: Myrtle Beach, SC
Equipment used: Nikon D700, Nikkor 70-200 2.8 VR lens, soft gold reflector, and mother nature’s own golden evening light.
Another sample of my location style Bridal imagery.
Location: Columbia, SC, USA
Equipment used: Nikon D700, Nikkor 24-70 2.8 lens, one Nikon SB900 speedlight shot through an umbrella, soft gold reflector.