Updated Jan, 31st 2013
PROJECT 3: MAKING SELECTIONS
Here are my final six selections from the best shoot:
PROJECT 2: THE SHOOT
This was a great learning process. I ended up doing three shoots. The first was indoors with ambient lighting. Here are a few stand out photos from that project:
I shot by hand with a 35mm prime open at 1.8 in order to shoot fast enough in the light. I love using this lens for portraits anyway, and always use it in low light situations. However, I was frustrated by being limited compositionally, as I couldn't get very far away from my subject. I haven't done much with lighting, whether studio lights or flash, and this project inspired me to start learning and experimenting with additional light sources.
The second shoot took place on a sunny afternoon in front of a mural that I really love. This shoot was the idea I had in mind when I put together my mood board. Well, that and working with lights and shutters to get some of those dramatic light contour photos. I asked my friend to pose only the night before for the mural shots, so if I had given her more notice I would have planned to do this shoot a few hours earlier and have softer light. Next time.
For the third shoot I borrowed a friend's DIY light kit, which was really several clamp-on flood lights like you would use in a workshop. But I transformed my living room into a studio of sorts and played with lighting until I got something I liked. It is definitely uneven lighting, but it was fun to experiment, and I took from it and increased desire to research/buy/build a kit that would help me capture the way the scene looks through my eyes. Here are a few shots:
I am really social and friendly, and by nature fascinated by people, so it was not hard for me to engage each subject in conversation. I noticed, however, that I tended toward collaborating with them on evoking an expression of some aspect of their personality. For example, in the mural shots, my subject is a painter (see her work here: http://www.ontheedgeofreason.com). I asked her questions about her work, and soon she was channeling her characters in front of the camera. When I came back and looked through the photos, I was aware that I captured a lot of those dramatized moments. However, I don't feel I captured one of those moments that are so raw and real and just human. I like both approaches, really, and find them both worthy of exploring, but this class makes me want to see just how real I can get with a camera.
In sum so far: more lighting, more human expression, more pre-planning the shot.
PROJECT 1: MOOD BOARD
I am drawn to really strong contrasts, geometric patterns, bright colors, and evocative stills that seem taken out of a larger story. Through my eyes, the world is sensual, bizarre, and extremely colorful.