Sunday, July 27, 2014

Not Your Average Senior Portrait

Over the past couple weeks, I have gotten the usual calls about shooting senior portraits... most parents want pretty standard photos. Not this kid.

When Nathan emailed me, I knew we had fun in store. I was pretty sure we would be able to do something way more fun. Throwing aside the "safe" lighting setups, we went for broke. We had such a blast goofing around in the studio, trying out all sorts of cool lighting ideas. Normally I have to use a delicate hand but Nathan said: Go for it! So we did! Very exciting images.

There are only a few more open sessions this summer for 2014-2015 HS Senior Portraits. Don't wait.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Almost Ready to Sail

Yesterday, the S/V When and If had her masts reinstalled at Katlynn Marine, Sodus Bay, on Lake Ontario. An incredible orchestration of coordinated effort by everyone! It is incredible to see the When and If with her spars back on. When I first saw the schooner, nearly a year and a half ago, her masts and rigging had already been removed before coming down the Erie Canal into Cayuga Lake. Seeing things coming together this summer has been fantastic! Next step: Seeing her underway with sails unfurled!

The guys operating the crane used nothing more complex than a bowline to lift the masts! Boy Scout knots finally come in handy.

Both masts are up and the working of setting up the standing rigging begins!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Dog Days of Summer

There is something about photographing people's pets which is so extraordinarily fun. Maybe it is the reflection of their owner's personalities? Maybe it is the critter's excitement? On hot days though, when they just want to loll around, that's when they seem most relaxed and themselves. Perfect time for some intimate images.

Top image is Amy McDonnell's Ruby, a big wonderful Newfie. Above is Monkey, wearing Nancy's pink summer hat.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Hot Wedding in Austin, Texas

The last weekend in June saw Aurora and I in Austin TX, for my sister's wedding. Maggie and Matt Spangenberg got married at a beautiful outdoor location up in the hills, outside of Austin. I have never met such a cast of characters! The bridal party was a hoot!

With temperatures into the 90's that day, the outdoor ceremony was brief and joyful. Of course, the best part for me: getting to see my sister so incredibly happy! Photographing weddings can be a lot of effort, but when they are this much fun, the work melts away and the energy and excitement take over.

This was my second wedding using a combined kit of both Nikon and Fuji equipment: the D300s and the X-T1. What was interesting was seeing how natural the colors were from the Fuji. Straight from the camera, I could have gone with JPGs alone and been just fine. If Fuji could bump up the dynamic range, that would be lovely... but other than that, I have no complaints with the X-T1. My Fuji 55-200 however, I have a mountain of complaints about. Well, really just one BIG complaint. Every time I snapped it onto the body, it would give me the lovely error: Turn Camera On and OFF again. In other words, the contacts between the lens and body were not happy. The lens has gone back to Fuji for repair or replacement. I am holding my breath that it gets back into my hands within a month.

The nice part about using the Nikon D300s is that after all the years of using it, I can put it into my hands, not think about any aspect of the camera and just shoot. 95% of what I see it captures perfectly. Everything else typically needs some massaging in LR5. This group shot was taken with the Fuji. With the extremes of dappled shade mixed with intense sun, it couldn't keep up. I set up the Nikon with PocketWizards and a speedlight on a monopod. Those images turned out spot on, no editing needed. If Fuji came out with a lighting system that cooperated with PWs I would be mighty impressed. I would love to have something like the AC3 that I could use with the PW Mini, to trigger and dial in my flashes the way I do with the Nikon. For now though, I will keep exploring the possibilities with the Fuji.