And they really want us to help them market their service and site. The request is that I post this imbed code that you will see as a picture, so I can get 100 bonus points to win a Nikon D800 which would be awesome to have. It is my next camera anyways, but hey if I can win it, even better.
Here is the code, they are probably going to track how many times this gets viewed by the way. And by what IP address, so be careful out there.
Sometimes you just hit it right on all the numbers, and a good friend of mine over at Femme Photo LTD was doing a race track shoot over at Evergreen Speedway. Femme Photo LTD is one of the cooler groups to work with for both learning models and learning photographers. It gives everyone a good chance to learn, grow, and get better at what we are wanting to do with our lives. If you are in the Seattle area, you really should check them out.
I was working with Model Madison along with one of my favorite photographers Chris for one segment of the photo shoot. Chris is great for posing people, which is one of my hardest things to do with a model. While Chris ran the poses, I was able to ride side saddle with him and get some amazing shots of Madison as a Grid Girl. Yes this is a black SS and a black bikini, along with some amazing clouds off in the distance, which reminds me of the idea that there is a storm coming. The way the model is posed and the framing of the clouds, the car, and the rest of it just adds to the idea that yes indeed there is a storm coming. Riding a SS, and dressed to kill.
This shot was done in natural light, with the camera set to 100 ASA, Aperture Priority on my Nikon D5100. We were also using a reflector using the Gold side to help capture what little sun there was involved with the photo shoot. It was nice to see the highlights show up by using natural light and adding some extra color to the skin tones by using the gold reflector. I have one of those 5 in 1 42 inch reflectors that works wonderfully in light where it is variable, and I want to add color, or just add neutral light by using the white side.
Overall I think this set turned out really nicely, and displays some attitude to go along with what we were trying to do. I learned a lot along the way especially with lighting and how to manage getting the expressions that you really do want to get while posing someone. I think that for beginning and even intermediate model photographers, posing ends up being one of the hardest things to do. We generally don’t like to “boss someone around”, but to get the shot you want, sometimes you have to, and when you do you might just end up with something very cool.
So I got fortunate with my last trip to China to meet up with the amazing people over at Beijing Photo Walks (check out their facebook page if you are in the area). We decided to head on over to Behai Park next to the forbidden city and coal hill to catch the super moon as it traversed the park. The good part is that the pollution was down enough to get some awesome shots of the super moon, and the park along the way. We were not the only people, there were a lot of photographers all over the park, and reaching to the east side of the forbidden city to catch this once a year event.
I took my trusty Nikon 5100, and an 18-105 lens for this, and did not use a tripod to hold the camera still. Rather used the tree or other object to brace myself when taking the pictures. I also had the camera up to ISO 3200 for this to help offset the jitter that is going to happen when you free hold the camera in low light conditions. I really wanted to get good vista pictures, pictures of the beauty of the park, and the super moon at the same time. So the moon does not look huge, nor did I do any special techniques to bring the moon closer by playing around with the F stops on this one. It was really more about catching the beautiful moon at a unique point in time to show off the beauty of Beijing China, and the super moon.
The interesting part was the number of people who were out there with every kind of camera imaginable from the cell phone camera to one intrepid person who had an 8X10 large format camera. I would dearly love to see the pictures that he was taking once they got developed, but we didn’t have a chance to swap photography cards.
I highly recommend Behai Park as a place to visit. Get off at the West Tiananmen subway and walk north from there right from the subway station. Take exit B to get on the right street. There are no people trying to sell the tourists anything, so it is a very nice walk to the park. Beijing has all these special little pockets of space to get away from people, enjoy some amazing history and grab some amazing pictures along the way.
Eastern State Penitentiary Philadelphia Pennsylvania
Ok, so Ghost Adventures has been there, and a ton of horror ghosty spooky shows have been there to talk to the ghosts that tales tell permeate the Eastern State Penitentiary in downtown Philadelphia Pennsylvania, but when you get into the decadent beauty that is the ruin of the site, that is the time that a photographer can have a blast with the place. I was able to get in there before the tour groups and spend three unstructured hours running around the place taking pictures. I brought an 18-105 Nikor Lens and my trusty Nikon 5100 for this photo shoot.
Honestly the feeling of the place is one of being tired; it is probably the most tired place on the face of the planet that I have been to. There really are no words to describe just how this place seems to suck the soul right out of you. I would probably be insane within weeks without anything to do as I lead a pretty active life. I can’t image being stuck in a 8 X 15 foot cell with a roof window, a single bare light bulb, some prison furniture for company, and little else to entertain you. The ruin in its own right is impressive; it is equally formidable when it comes to seeing this place as a ruin. There are places you can’t go because it is still falling down; restoration is going to take forever. But this is also a place worthy of being restored. It is a testament to a failed experiment in how to manage criminals, along with some of the more striking art installation in the cells. When you realize that the prisoners in GITMO have less space and are in a dog cage, you have to see it to believe it. We are far too removed from the butcher in this day and age to understand the art of meat. We are too far removed from crime and punishment to understand GITMO and places like Eastern State Pen.
Well worth seeing and exploring, I shot these in RAW format, and then processed them in Lightroom 5.4 using some fancy HDR effects I learned from watching YouTube videos. Let me know what you think, as always when doing urban exploration like this, you are bound to find interesting things that are left behind, such as an abandoned shoe in an abandoned cell, in an abandoned megalithic prison complex.
Eastern State Penitentiary Philadelphia Pennsylvania
If you missed this weekend’s Steampunk Exhibition Ball, then you really missed out on one of the coolest and fun parties here in the Seattle area. So I was lucky enough to be one of the event photographers for the show and finally got everything processed and done nicely for the Center for Sex Positive Culture who sponsors the event. Tons of very cool stuff, but let’s look at this from a photographer’s perspective. Lighting was awesome this year, the stage was nicely lit with a huge dance floor that had some decent overhead lighting, and the guy manning the spot light was also pretty good. Camera set on Auto no flash because in an event you really don’t have time to go manual, nor do you have time to go Aperture priority along the way. This is when you trust your camera to make decisions or you don’t. Surprisingly the camera did a pretty good job, so a lot of pictures worked out that I didn’t think would. Jessie Bell Jones is one of those sets.
Challenging to say the very least. She was doing her burlesque act on the dance floor, meaning the only viable lighting was the spot light. This is why I love the spot man; he was doing a great job keeping her lit enough for the camera. The only time the auto system failed was when the spot went orange, I have no idea what it is about Nikon, auto focus, and the color orange, but they sure do not like each other. Most of the orange lit did not come out, meaning the set was short as the light rotated colors about one color per minute. Otherwise you had muted overhead lighting to work with. The ISO’s were jacked to 3200 to help compensate, but you can tell the difference between the spot and non-spot lit pictures. This is why event photography totally rocks and is awesome. You rarely have challenges like this in studio or even on the street. I need to do more stuff like this.
Enjoy the lady in horns, this was a fun burlesque to capture.