Thursday, September 24, 2009

Architectural Style

I watched a Documentary today called "Visual Acoustics" about Julius Shulman and his work as an Architectural photographer. The film was excellently done and very motivating to watch. Anyone that knows or has seen the work of Julius Shulman can tell that the man was a creative genius with an eye for capture the story within each piece of architecture that he photographed.

I decided to take a little bit of time today, before a casting call I was needed at, to do some shooting of architecture and studying the lines and spaces of the areas around me. I tried to search for the best angles, where the leading lines would interesting and attention drawing.


I was able to shoot for about 25 minutes until a security guard became unhappy of my presence and decided that my practice time was done. However, it was just enough time to get a handful of good photos.


Bus Ticket

4th Floor Elevator

I'm going to be focusing on getting more architectural photo practice for awhile to expand my talents.

Thanks for stopping by!


Tuesday, September 8, 2009


Some friends of mine are getting married and very excitedly asked me to take their wedding invitation photos. I immediately said yes, figuring it would be fun to do something nice for my friends on their special occasion, but not thinking the photos would be of too much interest. I asked my friends what they were looking for, expecting the classic arm around each other happily smiling pose in front of a tree, picture that is so common of such photos. To my surprise and excitement I was told they were looking for something "artsy" that showed who they were as people and their connection in their relationship.

Playing in the fountain

We ended up taking a day shooting around the downtown Denver area with some very fun results. It ended up being a great learning experience for myself as well to think creatively in showing the connection between the couple.At first they were a little nervous but soon became very comfortable and had a great time! Pair with great backgrounds and locations the day was a big success!



We had such a good time that if schedules permit we may have another shoot soon!


Friday, August 28, 2009

Harvest of Horrors

"Something lurks in the fields at the Peterson Family Farm as the pumpkin patch revolts in a frenzied attack and threatens the very existence of an entire county. Estranged brothers must resolve their jealous feud to save the day, the family reputation, and make their mama proud – rest her soul!"

I wanted to post a link to the film that I am Assistant Director on, which is scheduled to shoot late fall of this year. The film is called, "Harvest of Horrors" and is sure to be a fun and exciting ride that everyone will enjoy!

Please visit our website and blog for sneak peaks and updates on the film!

Get ready for a "Action-Packed, Six-Gun-Slingin', Samurai-Sword Swingin', Orange Goo splattered, Punk-a-Billy romp through the pumpkin patch!"


Friday, August 14, 2009

Summer Runways

So Summer is coming to a close and its been a very busy season indeed! I've taken thousands of photos and have spent hours editing. Thus far all the hard work has been paying off with great looking photos! Here is a few samples from some runways I shot.

Urban Fashion

Standing Out

Holding the Pose


Looking forward to next seasons shows!


Monday, June 15, 2009

Depth of Field

Green Eyes

These shots I took at an ISO of 400, F 1.8,and shutter speed 1/250 on my 50mm prime lens. They were lit with a single 100 watt bulb through diffusion gel to give a good contrast look. I decided to shoot at a higher ISO so that I could use a wide open aperture and get a super shallow Depth of field.

The shallow depth of field draws the eye to the focus point of the picture and creates a very nice effect on these photos.



Saturday, June 6, 2009

Group Shots

Central Focus

When doing group pictures its really important to look at eye line. In pictures where the eye line of people in the photography are not focused on a certain point together or motivated to do otherwise there is a very distracting effect and the result is an unnatural feeling photo.If you do not wish for all your models eye lines to be together then give them reasons not to be together.

For example, you could have a picture of a couple, the man is looking at the camera and the woman is gently stroking his face while peacefully looking at him.
In bigger groups focus on giving everyone something to do and a character emotion which will help them all deliver more natural looks.

Keeping Everyone Motivated


Thursday, May 28, 2009

Think of the Product

The other day I went out with my model friends to get some photo practice and work on various techniques. One of the things we worked on was the idea of selling a product. Fashion and advertising photography is not all about taking a pretty picture. The photo has to serve the purpose of making the viewer want or at least think about the product that is being displayed.

More Bars in More Places!

You have to first establish a mood that will best portray the product or lead to the product. Then you have to think of ways to bring out that mood in the character, surroundings, and photo style; establishing a common idea and theme for the photo and why one would want or need the product.

What to Wear in a Breeze

You don't have to be right in peoples faces with it, the best way to display your product is to incorporate it into the world around it.


Monday, May 11, 2009

Prime Lens

I tried out my new 50mm Prime lens the other night when I had some free time on a film shoot. We were in a dark alley that I had lit with two 800watt Kobold HMI's through a 6 by 6 Silk frame. I asked one of the actresses, when she had a spare moment, to come stand in front of the light and model for a few pictures so I could try out my new lens. I only had a few minutes so I gave a few instructions and went to snapping!

Dark Attraction

I was very happy with the results. The biggest plus to using a prime lens is the speed. Since there is lens glass in a prime lens versus a zoom lens, the lens is able to work at faster F-stops. This allows for two major pluses. First, you can shoot with a faster F-stop at a Slower ISO giving you more depth of field and secondly, you are able to shoot in lower light situations.

Reaching for shadows

I highly recommend investing in a prime lens if you have not yet. I'm very happy with mine thus far and I'm looking forward to getting plenty of use out of my new lens in the future!


Friday, April 24, 2009

Dancing With Light

Tonight was pretty fun,I shot some pictures at a fashion show that show cased works from up and coming fashion design students.

Walking through Color

It was a difficult show to shoot since the lighting was very dark and the lenses I had were pretty slow. For the lighting they were using par cans with colored gels mounted to the ceiling and a spot light for back light as the models walked down the runway. However, the par cans were mostly only hitting in the middle of the runway making for a very small shooting window.The main photographer for the show had some very nice profoto strobes , but those only fired at the end of the runway when she took a picture of the models finishing pose.

Standing in the Darkness

The lighting did make for a few very interesting and creative photos however, and I had a very fun time trying to come up with creative shots in the lighting that was available.



Cross Processing


I went to the film store a few weeks back looking for some fun film to play with. I ended up buying some 35mm vivid saturation Slide film which film takes a positive image instead of a negative image. I then decided to develop the pictures using "cross process". Slide film uses a different development process then normal color negative film, instead of developing the slide film with its process, I had it developed using a "cross process" in the normal color negative development process.


This was the first time I had developed cross process and I noticed some very interesting and unique effects. By looking through the photos it is easy to see that cross processing throws the image in the green direction and picks up greens really well.I was aware of this green before shooting however I was surprised to see that it also raises the contrast of the image, bringing a strong distance between the whites and blacks.


Another really interesting, and not very desirable, effect I found was bleeding in the deep blacks.In the dark shadows and areas in the image where there is deep blacks the image has a purple bleed, however, this is not consistent through all the pictures. It seems to be only on images where a shadow is moving, or there was a slight blur. This something I'll have to pay more attention too in the future.

Purple Bleed

Next film roll I'm shooting is expired!


Saturday, April 18, 2009

Shooting In The Basement

Originally I was going to take my model friend and go shoot outside at an outdoor concert amphitheater yesterday, however, upon checking the weather a few days prior I found that we would be in the midst of a winter storm where we could get up to 2 feet of snow that day. Slightly frustrated with the fact we would see so much snow in the middle of April, I decided to come up with another plan.

Staying inside

We ended up shooting at a friends house with just a couple lights in his basement. All and all it made for an interesting shoot! We came up with some unique make up ideas and themes by just looking through what we had available and where in the basement we had room enough to shoot.


It really is amazing how many different feels you can get in a basement! I talked with the model a lot and bounced around ideas to keep pushing for different feels, which she was able to pull of beautifully! We had a small crew built up of friends and we kept to a very casual shooting schedule which made for a very comfortable shooting environment open to creative ideas. While it may not of worked for some bigger more strict themed shoots, it made for a great way to kill some time on a snow day, get some more practice, and take some great photos!



Saturday, April 11, 2009

Take The Moment

There have been many times in my life where I have seen something I wanted to take a picture of and didn't. I either didn't have my camera with me, or I thought, "eh it is probably not interesting enough". I have since found a lot of these moments to be wasted opportunities.

On one hand, if I had taken the picture I thought to but didn't, I may just end up with a really great picture. On the other hand, if the picture wasn't a good picture, I would be able to look and understand why; leaving with gained knowledge.

Over Colorado

In the world of digital photography there is rarely a wasted shot. You have the space on the card, if something caught your eye then take the picture. If you don't like the picture try to figure out why and how you could perhaps make it better.

"Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new."
Albert Einstien


Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Just Something About It


I got some Black and White 35mm film developed today. I borrowed a friends old Pentax manual camera a few weeks back to shoot the roll. Just finally got around to developing it and I'm pretty happy with the results.

Watching the Snow Flakes

You can debate the film and digital difference all you want, but there is something about film that is special. Its a pure chemical reaction of light physically hitting silver alkaloids, instead of light hitting a chip. It gives a certain softness and a unique feel; something I enjoy very much.

Sat in Time

Hopefully I'll be able to shoot some more film soon.


Friday, April 3, 2009

Without Stands

I tend to find it very irritating to light scenes on film sets with light stands. They can take up valuable room on smaller sets, create road blocks, find their way into shots that they aren't suppose to be in, and are be a bear to move back and forth. I try to do the majority of my lighting on set with clamps, pigeon plates, and practicles(lights that can be seen in the shot itself).

Maffer the Cabinet

The biggest advantage to lighting this way is there is very little changing after the initial master set up is complete. It can take more time to set up, but in the end it saves time because you don't have to worry about moving a stand out of the shot,then try to set it up somewhere else with the same lighting continuity.

On the set of "The Brig" I was Gaffing for a scene in a club. It required many lights of many different colors. Many of the blocking points needed to have their own feel and this required very specific placement of the lights. I noticed on the tech scout that the ceiling had truss mounted above the majority of the dance floor. This made setting up the lighting very easy because I could simply maffer clamp all the lights onto the truss then run power to the strips and circuits that were for the house lighting grid. After my lights were in place I was then able to pick a few of the house circuit lights that I liked and use them as well.

Make Your Order

It would have been very difficult to do the sets ups without using claps to set up the lights. We had many large master shots, and with the lighting schemes it would have been difficult to avoid mixing the colors. With my set up I could avoid these problems and then if I needed some extra fill for close ups it was easy for me to bring in a LED On a stand close for the shot and tear down for the next one.

The Close Up


Thursday, March 12, 2009

The Beauty of Still Photography


I shot my first "Fashion Photography" shoot Wednesday night. Its amazing the differences between motion picture and still photography. With Motion picture you have many different elements and 24 frames per second that can go about to make a good shot.Two big elements that can be used to draw out emotion in cinematography are the motion of the camera and the motion of the actor, or subject if there is any.

With Still photography you have 1 frame and 1 chance to get the composition, framing, lighting, look from the model,and pose of the model to be perfect! Sometimes in motion picture films you make use of an offset composition or strange lighting to have some effect later in the shot,novelty moves that you don't have with stills.

Its for some of these reasons that leads me to feel that still photography is harder then motion picture cinematography. However this means that still photography can be a great way to train your eye for motion picture work because of how small the margin between a good photo and a bad photo is. A margin I'm still learning how to hit every time, but that is what practice is for.

When Things Come Together


Monday, March 9, 2009

The Problem of White Walls.

I was Gaffing on set this last weekend on a set for a short film which was filled with dream sequences. For one of the scenes the character wonders into a room to find his now dead friend waiting there for him. The room we had to shoot in was a small square room which was completely empty with white walls. Upon first glance I was terrified to shoot in such a room! Then I was given one of my favorite instructions of all time "Light this however the **** you want, and don't let it make since" After looking back at the white walled room I pictured it as a blank canvas waiting to be painted and went to grab my things.

There are a few reasons why white walls can be monsters to deal with on set. The biggest being that they are uninteresting and very flat. When you are shooting a film or taking a picture you are creating a world. Everything within your world has to go together to make it believable, or people will reject the matrix which you created. Another big issue with white walls is that they can overexpose very easily making it hard to get good separation between your characters and your background.

To fix my white wall problem was easy. Since it was a dream sequence I could get away with a very easy trick to fix the wall. I simply started by changing the color of the wall all together by using a Fresnel light with a magenta gel. I then decided to break up the color by cutting a cookie and shining a green gelled light at the wall. Green is the contrasting color to magenta so it provided and interesting mix.I also shined a moving water light, which changed colors, into a mirror which bounced into the corner of the wall providing some extra jazz. Finally I lit the actor with a separate white light to bring exposure to his face. Top it off with a keep out sign and some zombie make up from the art director and you got yourself a pretty interesting scene!

Bad Dream

The lighting was a big hit among the crew and the room got tagged the name "70s Dance Room". Now wasn't that more interesting then a white wall?


Wednesday, March 4, 2009


Its very difficult to stay motivated. I tend to jump at opportunities and projects quickly, in hopes that I'll shoot something really great or be able to acquire some new skill. This isn't always the case and occasionally I'll find myself burnt out and frustrated.

The best way I've found to fix the problem is to just push through it. I'm rarely completely thrilled with things that I've shot, but that doesn't mean I can't learn from them. That doesn't mean its completely worthless. We have to take everything in stride and remember to look ahead, keeping our mistakes in the past and our frustrations under our feet as we climb our way through.

You can't ever let frustration defeat you! Besides, you never know when you will come across a happy accident.

Lack of Contrast