Wimpy Contact Sheet

Got it out of my head.

You know, sometimes you get this idea in your head and you just gotta get it out. I did this last night in my studio.

Anyone want to model as Popeye for me?

A bit about this, I used my main light directly and above my camera to broaden my face and a second light off to the side with a barn door just to give me some shape. A third was on my background cloth (a red fleece blanket.) I used a plug-in called Topaz Simplify to eliminate a lot of details and then history painted my eyes back in with photoshop.

Second Shooters Need Work Too

Shannon poses for another shot.I was helping a friend a week ago as she took a young lady’s senior portraits downtown. My job was to hold a reflector, direct the subject’s pose if necessary, and just be the photographer’s helper.

This is Shannon. She wanted some urban settings so Mary Marcellino and I gave her and her dad a tour of some urban locations downtown.


September 2010 BE Your Best

I just got the September issue of BE Your Best magazine published by Booth Newspapers / Grand Rapids Press.

My work made the cover and inside in four other places. I had four assignments with this issue.

They’ve been good to me since I’ve left The Press in February. I am getting -paid- gigs from them and seem to be giving them what they want.

More to come in the October issue…

A Different Viewpoint

There was occasional car traffic here in the half hour I was parked along this road near Manistee, Michigan. Someone even pulled over way up there to pick up a huge piece of dead wood and get it in their pick up truck, probably for their camp fire. This was the holiday weekend by the way.

I have visited this site many times and in every season (we get four in Michigan.)

This time, I decided to use my widest angle lens and get my camera as high as I could get it and fire it with a remote. I’d say it was between 12 and 15 feet off of the ground for this image. I was on a step stool that I keep in my car and I used a monopod to hold it as high as I could above my head. Yes, I have insurance on my camera and gear in case I break it.

I shot horizontal and vertical images. Both had this ethereal viewpoint this time.

I had to head out there when I saw we were having a good sunny evening. Nice light. Almost as exciting as winning at the casino (that was a joke.) I even got a good photo with my cruddy camera on my cell phone.

A high percentage of my images are vertical since I am vertical being, I feel that is more natural.

Unusual Combination

Guns and Booze. Photo taken for flickr’s MacroMonday group. Each week we are given a theme to try to take up to five macro photos related to the theme..

I took just over 100 photos to get this. Many more than I normally do. I was aiming high, low, all kinds of angles and part placements. One or two strobes and a reflector also. I don’t normally shoot that many but I was enjoying the situation. This one, I had a strobe behind to send some light through the bottle but then the lower part of the gun was dark and a reflector wasn’t filling in the shadows enough so I added a second strobe to give some more depth to the subject. Oh, as a side note, this was shot outdoors, in the woods.

I enjoy the challenges from these ‘assignments’ and encourage you to write down ideas, follow assignments and generally put your thinking caps on to capture some images.

I was up north in Manistee visiting friends and relatives at my mom’s place. So including target practice shots, these hand gun shots, candids, canine photos, children photos, and unique landscapes in the area, I had a pretty good day off.

Now, back to the real world.

Chiaroscuro Lighting


Originally uploaded by photoshoparama – Dan

Ahh, the old “charred squirrel’ lighting technique.

This week I practiced my Chiaroscuro lighting in my home studio. One light raking along the back wall (textured concrete) and the main light high to camera left on subject (me in this example)
This style has been used for hundreds of years to create depth in the 2 dimension world of art. Chiaroscuro originated during the Renaissance as drawing on coloured paper.

What motivated me this week? I found and bought a couple of photographs taken in 1900 that used this technique and wanted to try to re-create the style of lighting.

Test Run

My son Vince is going to be a senior in high school this year and I have been discussing how he is going to want his portrait taken for the yearbook.

His thoughts are, “I’d like to have a snow sculpture in it with me in the background, out of focus.” Uhh, no. I don’t think mom will approve.

This one’s going to be a challenge.

We stopped at a local park that is a hot spot for senior portraits and other portraits. The sun goes behind trees earlier than normal because it is a low spot with a stream running through it.

I had his little brother Quentin help hold a reflector and couldn’t get Vince to give much of a smile until Quentin started joking with him. Thanks Q.

Vince cracked a smile for the camera.
Vince at Grotto Park near Grand Rapids' North end of Riverside Park.

And Further More.

Okay. I’ll get right on it.

Like I don’t have enough to do being unemployed.

I just realized that I can be telling about my photo accomplishments here on this buh-log. Like tooting my own horn or something.

I’ll get on to tooting my horn and play a little catch up very soon.

Must get some sleep and dream about what to disclose about my adventures.