My Hollywood showcase, with RAW Artists

THANK YOU EVERYONE!

Last night was my showcase in Hollywood, at Playhouse with RAW Artists. As many of you know, I was contacted by RAW Artists a little over a month ago. They had come across my photography and were interested in having me showcase with them. Well, that event was last night and the support I received from everyone was overwhelming.

I was really touched by how many people came out to support me and my work – and even the goofy shot of five of my subjects and myself above is awesome!

So often I tend to look at my work as just photos.
Don’t get me wrong, I believe in my work and stand my imagery. I’m confident in my abilities, but I still will look at my images as something that my subjects allow me to very easily create with them.

What I’m trying to say, is that often I forget that the portraits I’ve created of people mean more to those individuals than I realize. ¬†And nearly every person from my collection in last nights showcase proved that by showing up excited to see their photo on the wall, give me a hug, congratulate me on my work, and thank me for allowing them to be a part of it.

I’m surprised I didn’t get more emotional, but as I go through these photos and see what a great time everyone had talking and meeting one another, it compounds the amount of love there really was last night. Again, Thank You!

A couple things that stand out, before I get to a huge assortment of photos…
My cousin drove up from San Diego to be there even though he had to work at 4a the next day, thank you Gianni!
My Mom and step-dad flew down last minute from the Bay Area.
Adam, who turned into my poster-boy for this whole event, came out on his 25th birthday to be there.
Lauren, my best girl friend here in LA, celebrated her birthday last night with me at the show AND took tons of photos for me because she knew I wouldn’t have time.

Everyone else that attended, texted, called, emailed, posted on facebook, etc. Thank you all for the support!

Please check out the rest of the images after the break, I’ll have a lot more to say about the event and people that attended.

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Tall, Dark, Beautiful. Shooting with Kassandra.

While most of you were watching the Superbowl I was spending the afternoon shooting with Kassandra. Some of you may recognize her from our shoot on the K&N 2011 Calendar (view it here if you need a refresher, she’s November).
Well, it had been a year since we last shot, and even though we’ve talked about putting something together again for a while, life always gets in the way. We finally found time this past weekend to catch up on life, and make some great images.

Kassandra, for those of you who haven’t met her, is stunning. Tall, long black hair, and amazing figure. How are you not going to create awesome images?
The original ideas we started playing with were similar to the portrait style images of Mike Bell that I shot a week ago (check the last blog post). Kassandra loved the darker grittier feel to those. We ended up spending a few hours together and doing about seven different style shots. The image above was created in the middle of our afternoon together. I love the contrast difference between the white and black. And it puts nearly all the focus right on her eyes.

I like the uncropped version, too. But I’m sure most of you noticed that I’m a big fan of landscape/wide shots with my images.

Here’s what we were originally going for… a darker image. In this case we have a black/black/black/black shot. What I mean is that she has black hair, a black boa, black shirt, on a black background. Unfortunately for most of you guys reading this, you aren’t on calibrated monitors. But, for those of you that are, you will see that there is actually differentiation between all four elements in this image. This is one of those photo-nerd moments where I’m going to point out that there is a level of light/exposure control to create this shot. So for those of you new-to-photo readers that I have, practice with this idea ; )

Portrait style shot.
Really dig the attitude mixed with her style on the red-drape background. The border was added effect.

Kassandra showed me some simple images like this that she wanted to create. Again, very clean, but with contrast between the black clothes and empty surroundings.

Also a casual version, with a sweater and shoes.
But check out her Converse that she made!

We went out to the roof to see what we could shoot out there. Neither of us were completely feelin this location with the chess board. But, I figured I’d throw some layers and textures in to make it more interesting. Did it work? I don’t know.

But I do like this version more. Maybe I’ll go in and remove the background completely…

Edit! I removed the background tonight. Looks much better I feel like.

I <3 LA

Last shot of the evening was on this awesome couch. The only tricky part was Kassandra’s incredibly long legs on what was actually a very short couch. I still think it came out great though.

Between all the different style shots, catching up on life, and laughing at what’s new, it was great to see an old friend and shoot again. I have a few more shoots this week that are in the works including portraits of Sean Logan (the BMXer) and two more model shoots. I think I’m going to be continuing the portrait series with various people I know down here in LA in different industries. Should be fun.

Check back in a few days for more shots. I’ll try and post another blog this weekend.

Calendar Previews; update One.

Remember that calendar I shot?
Of course you do… I had to make very vague posts about what exactly I spent two months working on and shooting… couldn’t really show you anything, could barely talk about it..

Well, I can finally show you guys a few preview images from my work!
A bit of a refresher – I was contracted by a major automotive company to shoot their 2010 calendar. Each shoot was unique in style, concept, era, theme, and location. I was given full creativity with the creative department to come up with many ideas for the 12 months. In the end, I was contracted to shoot 9 of the 12 months and have recently received permission to share some of those preview shots with you guys! Note: the calendar has been put on hold til 2011. It will still be amazing when it’s printed, and I wouldn’t be surprised if some of the images are swapped out by that point.

The image above is with the lovely Kassandra Kiremit. Kassandra and I met over a year ago and had planned on doing a shoot like this from day one. It took forever for things to finally happen, but, to be able to shoot for a major project like this was worth the wait.

During this shoot we had an incredible ’32 Buick and long tree-lined driveway at a mansion as our backdrop. I’ve spent some time giving these images an old, weathered, and beat-up effect. I don’t know how the final product will look, as I am not handling their editing. Also, the shots I am sharing are not the shots that will be printed either. These are some of my favorites, though.

Editing this photo I used the same technique as the image above. However I quickly realized that having more dark/black areas in the image made the weathered-look much harder to manipulate. Oh well, I honestly think I like the first image more.

Kassandra and I will hopefully be shooting again in the near future. We’ve talked about a few concepts, but, as usual, it’s a matter of when our schedules match up. Haha.

I’ll be honest and say this shoot was the most frustrating for me.
Our original ideas and concept was great. We had a huge, blacked out, lifted extended cab courtesy of Taylor – who I had shot previously for some K&N Filters ads.
Our model, is a dancer, so therefor small and bendy.
Our location was the Caterpillar/CAT facility. So the ideas around “Big truck, big machines, small girl” were a lot of fun to play around with. But in the end I was very frustrated with my lack of lighting options, and after nightfall the area became pitch black.

We were able to get some good shots, but for me, personally, I left frustrated and felt that it was not a great example of my abilities and skill with photography.

Next up I will post images from another two shoots. I’ve decided to break up the posts because each shoot was so unique that I could honestly write nine very long and detailed blogs about them all. However, most of you may not come back to read each and every one! Haha!

So, check back here in a few days. Subscribe if you haven’t already, and you’ll see more of my work on this project.
In the mean time I’m currently working on some side projects, and looking at fabricating some specialized gear for some specific shoots I would like to do.

February is shaping up to be a very busy month for me. Hope you all are doing as well, too!