Making Rain–Wet Studio Adventure

Discovered that Denver has a wet studio. Just like a regular photo studio except that it can handle water. Water from the top like rain. Water from the bottom in a pool. Splash and flash and you get all kinds of fun photos. For someone, like me, who loves adding water to my photographs, it was like discovering candy or ice cream or ice cream sprinkled with candy. You get the idea. Here’s one of the resulting photos. If you want to have the same fun, Google The Old Studio in Denver and talk to Lewis Preston. Tell him I sent you.

In the first photo the model is lying in a puddle while it rains down on her. Warm water, BTW. Model claimed she was having fun.

Here’s a different image from the same shoot. In this case, no rain but milk was added to the pool to give it an opaque look–milky and wonderful.

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Going to Show in Providence, Rhode Island

This one has been invited to a photography show at the Peter Miller Fine Art Photography Gallery in Providence, Rhode Island. Show was juried by Rob Van Petten. Photo was taken in Vermont so an east coast outing seems appropriate. Show runs from May 21 to June 12, 2015 if you happen to be in the area.

Taken in the shade with light filtering through the trees, the play of light on the pond and body was what appealed to me. Works best in b&w because of that filtered light.

Hope you like it, too.

Three Images Accepted Jackson Hole Photo Contest!

Not a show. This is a print sale and contest. New thing for me to try. I sent the accepted (juried) images to sponsors of the contest. They print and offer the unmatted, unframed prints for sale. They also select cash winners. Wish me luck.

Jackson Hole, Wyoming was a cow-town when I was growing up in that area. Mostly I remember the western clothing store with the stuffed, upright bear. Impressive to¬†a youngster. Now it is an upscale community with lots of galleries, so I’m excited to be showing there.

All three images are photographs that have been in other shows. If you follow this blog, you recognize them. Tried and true.

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maskatude

Machine Shop Nude

A friend, who also does fine art nude photography, hates props. He thinks the human form unadorned is cheapened by the addition of mirrors, machines or almost anything else. Hard enough to make the skin tone right, capture the muscle tone and movement. I nod my head. He’s right, of course. And he’s wrong. When the prop gives contrast and interest to the composition, it’s hard to say it’s not important to the picture. I like these two photographs¬† because, in both cases, the prop is central and minimal giving the human form lots of room to be the point of the photograph.

Both were done in a machine shop with lots of grease and everything else. That can become an even bigger issue. You begin to include too much of the environment. Then the photographs begin to look like: “Oh, we have an undressed person in the machine shop.” The trick, I’ve always believed, is to use the environment, make it part of the photo, but not lose the focus which is the human form.

 

Leaving Fashion Behind

I’m trying a new style of photo that almost looks like a line drawing. Don’t want to discuss the technique just yet. Interested in reactions. Like it? Can pass on it?

These print large or small. I’m thinking I would like it framed with white mat and white frame–white on white on white. Perfect for a dressing room.

Too Many Legs

Working with mirrors is fun. Tricky! You have to figure out how to get the shot without also getting a reflection of you and your camera and/or the lights and the studio in the shot. In this case the model is holding the mirror at an angle that almost points down, but the photo flattens it. That and cropping off the ends of the mirror creates the surreal, not-sure-what-I’m-seeing sensation. Mose people have to puzzle a moment before realizing a mirror is part of the composition. Lots of fun. This is a photo that has been successful for me. It’s been at Camera Obscura, Dairy Center for the Arts and a couple of other shows. I think of it as a made-you-look-twice kind of picture that a lot of people enjoy.

Black and white film capture; digital print. Although I have also printed this one in the darkroom as a traditional print as well. The only thing I did in Photoshop was clean a few dust specs off the mirror. It can be printed large 10×20, but also works as a small print. It’s a personal favorite that hangs over my desk. I think it could be fun hanging over a fireplace. In series of 25 prints. About a third of the series is sold.

Silhouette Times Six


I’m no fan of silhouette photos. Most of the time, I think the same image, not in silhouette, would be more interesting so why go the gimmick route? This is an exception because the plastic dress forms, on either side, create a second repeat of pattern and then for a bonus, the dress forms reflect the silhouettes (look closely). Result is six images with two models. Now, that adds up to an image that is more than just setting up some backlit lighting.

The other criteria is that the silhouette shapes need to be eye-arresting. I think these are because of the angled arms and slight hand movement. I like that one model is facing the camera, the other is turned sideways. Even the hair hanging down adds something.

This one is best big enough to show all the silhouettes, even the reflected ones, 11×14 or even larger. It does well matted black or white. It would be fun in a dressing room or walk-in closet. It is modest enough for a public space. Printed in series of 25 prints.

Fine Art Nude #2

Although this is a color digital shot, I thought it printed best as a classic black and white photograph.

What makes this a good photo? I think it’s the connection between the two models and the fact that they are both focused on something off to the left of the frame which creates both compositional interest and a sense of spontaneity.

What else do I like? The sense of motion, as if they might be moving rather than posed. In fact, the direction was for the models to both move continuously as if in slow motion, in-and-out, back-and-forth. I often give that kind of direction because it avoids the static, posed composition. That also means I have to work to catch the right moment rather than setting something up. As any photographer will tell you, every additional person adds additional complications. It’s twice as hard to get a good photo with two models as with one.

Digital camera; studio set-up, two-lights.

This one is called Hanna and Friend. It can be printed large but my preference is smaller 10 x 12 with a wide white matt and silver frame. It is in a series of 25. This is new work, and the series is just released–25 of the 25 are still available.

I think this one would work well hung in a smaller space like a hallway.