Photography

Spring is Here in the States

So that means the majority of weddings are here also. Here are some things to think about when hiring a photographer. Remember a photographers website will only show the best, so if it doesn't look good, walk away! If you go for the $500 wedding photographer, that's exactly what you're going to get. GET AN ALBUM! You'll look at that a lot more than the video. Do you really need video? Most photographers can do video clips for you. Whomever you're hiring for video is not Steven Spielberg. Don't expect a Hollywood production for $3000. Not gonna happen. Remember that when the expensive meal, flowers, chair covers, DJ, and cake are gone all you have left are the images. If your photographer does not initiate a meeting or lunch or portrait session with you prior to your wedding, do not use that photographer. The first words out of a good photographers mouth will be to ask what you expect as a final product. When you hire a photographer you will probably not have a detailed schedule so you can't be very specific about time. Remember his time is money. The average time of a wedding from start to finish can be up to 8 hours so don't book the photographer for 4 hours.  A good photographer will attend the rehearsal to meet the important people. The  Best Man and Maid of Honor should actually help in keeping the Bride stress free. Let them know that they may be asked to be a trouble-shooter. Don't pick a drunk. Make sure the DJ knows to announce important points in the event and does not let those happen without the photographer present. Have the wedding planner organize as much as possible. That is why they get paid. And last but not least remember that if everyone at the ceremony jumps in front of the photographer with their iPhone when you are walking down the aisle, you images will not look good!

 

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Spring is Here in the States

So that means the majority of weddings are here also. Here are some things to think about when hiring a photographer. Remember a photographers website will only show the best, so if it doesn't look good, walk away! If you go for the $500 wedding photographer, that's exactly what you're going to get. GET AN ALBUM! You'll look at that a lot more than the video. Do you really need video? Most photographers can do video clips for you. Whomever you're hiring for video is not Steven Spielberg. Don't expect a Hollywood production for $3000. Not gonna happen. Remember that when the expensive meal, flowers, chair covers, DJ, and cake are gone all you have left are the images. If your photographer does not initiate a meeting or lunch or portrait session with you prior to your wedding, do not use that photographer. The first words out of a good photographers mouth will be to ask what you expect as a final product. When you hire a photographer you will probably not have a detailed schedule so you can't be very specific about time. Remember his time is money. The average time of a wedding from start to finish can be up to 8 hours so don't book the photographer for 4 hours.  A good photographer will attend the rehearsal to meet the important people. The  Best Man and Maid of Honor should actually help in keeping the Bride stress free. Let them know that they may be asked to be a trouble-shooter. Don't pick a drunk. Make sure the DJ knows to announce important points in the event and does not let those happen without the photographer present. Have the wedding planner organize as much as possible. That is why they get paid. And last but not least remember that if everyone at the ceremony jumps in front of the photographer with their iPhone when you are walking down the aisle, you images will not look good!

 

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The Passionate Photographer

I just finished reading "The Passionate Photographer", by Steve Simon. The book concentrates on three basic elements: intent or passion, practice, and technique. The is a must read for photographers of all levels trying to improve their photography. The beauty of this book is that it details specific techniques while emphasizing tried and true composition theory to practice as assignment suggestions throughout the chapters. Steve Simon sprinkles his own images, good, and bad, to give examples of what to, and not to do when creating an image. Please do not think that you need to be an experienced photographer to understand, or put in practice the ideas in "The Passionate Photographer". On the contrary, I would also gift this book to the beginning photographer. I don't believe that I am lacking in the passion, but I can honestly say that I learned from every chapter. I recommend it highly. I purchased the book online at Amazon.

Transient

Shadows are the Soul of your Images

Shadows are the Soul of Your Images as they give shape, mood, and depth to your photography. They must, however, be used creatively, and not left to chance or environment. One of the best ways to do this is with a single off-camera light, whether held in your hand or on a stand. When I use the term light, this can literally be ANY light: a studio light, camera flash, shop light from Home Depot or even a bare hanging bulb. It need not be fancy. There are various ways to trigger the strobes/camera flash, such as a cord connected to your camera or if using the same manufacturer of flash and camera, wirelessly. After you have your light source established, now it's time to shape the light. There are several types of light modifiers on the market that will suit your needs. Bouncing flash off a white ceiling produces much softer light, where a flashlight or "on camera" flash produces harder light. The idea is to experiment with everything. In this image II used a snoot opened up on the end to give the image more of a spotlight effect to emphasize the shadows. I recommend paying a visit to B&H Photo www.bhphotovideo. com, www.strobist.blogspot.com, or even www.YouTube.com. They all have tutorials and an abundance of information on photographic lighting. 20120827-094955.jpg

Art and Bodies: A Celebration of Self Expression

I honestly, did not know what to expect when the call went out to cover the South Florida Tattoo Expo in Coral Springs. I knew though that the color and characters that I would encounter would certainly provide for interesting photographic opportunities. I checked in to get my Media Credentials and the ladies at the registration table were very pleasant and as far as I could see free of bodily markings or anything else. On my way to the main Expo area I passed the Pirate tables. Theses are the Doctors, Lawyers, and various other Professionals that dress like bad asses in all kinds of Harley stuff. I truly did not see anyone there that looked scary and acted the part. On the contrary everyone and I mean everyone was very pleasant and more than eager to get photographed. In a couple of cases this was sans clothing. Ok, so I did not do this assignment just for the pay. Then again a Publix Bagger would not do it for the pay either. I do kiosk after another this because I love photography and interacting with people. After passing the many vendors that mainly consisted of Sex Toys, body implants of various types and Drug paraphernalia, I made it into the main hall. The main area of the Expo was one Tattoo Kiosk after another. I would say probably fifty in all, and they were all doing brisk business usually by appointment only. I definitely had Tattoo envy with my one and only Ironman Tattoo.  On owner stopped me and showed me his latest work of art. Seeing that I had my media tag on, he said I missed all the excitement. About half an hour before I arrived he Tattooed a woman's Anus a Green Blue which he proudly showed me on his Iphone. Really? I would not have believed it had I not seen it with my own eyes. The Expo was not a place for the bashful. If you can imagine where someone can get a Tattoo, they were getting them there and in some very private places. Funny thing, I did not see any of the typical guys, you know who they are with the Tribal Armband.These were hard core Tattoo people. The real story in my opinion and what provided for the most interesting images were not the customers, but the artists. The different looks of concentration showed that they have a genuine dedication to their craft. These are not the slouches that misspell words on peoples knuckles with rudimentary instruments. The Tattoo Artists I saw there were true professionals in their interaction with the public, their adherence to cleanliness and safety, and the works of art they were creating. There was also a tasteful burlesque show, and piercing contest, though I missed the later while watching a young lady receive several piercings on her chest and back that were then laced with leather. I spoke to her afterward and she told me that she was an apprentice at the Tattoo Parlor that was performing the work. I guess that could be a tax deduction. Anyway enjoy the images I posted and follow the link to my Facebook Page to see the rest. Thanks for reading! [nggallery id=11]

My perspectives on Wedding Photography

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I made some wedding images for the daughter of a very good friend last weekend. I love weddings. Better said, I love experiencing the human interaction at weddings from the standpoint of an active participant. The photographer is probably the only person that sees everyone more often, more than once. At their best, and at their worst sometimes. The challenge when shooting for a friend is managing the stress in making sure that the images are perfect and to ensure that you get both families as equally as possible. It's too easy to be drawn to one side if you are friends with many of the same people. In this case I have known the Bride's Mother and Father for many years. I will say though that whatever event I shoot I am always a bit stressed. Why? Because I care. I often tell people that I should stop shooting events the day I stop getting stressed because it means I've stopped caring. Some advice: I would never suggest that a friend photograph another friends wedding unless they have a lot of professional experience photographing weddings. Many friendships have been lost this way.

Tiny Dancer

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I wanted to make images of a Dancer, but I did not want the typical Dance pose. I decided to use a more dramatic pose that matched the personality and grace of the dancer. Additionally I added the film and imperfect paper effect to give it a feeling of being aged. Someone left it in the bottom of a drawer for many years as many of these types of images are found.

2012 Art Wynwood

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I photographed the 2012 Art Wynwood VIP / Press Preview Night and After Party at Wynwood Walls for NewTimes Miami. Here are selected images from that event. The art was amazing. About thirty percent was photography. Of course I was very focused on the photography. Photographers, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Andy Warhol,  and Douglas Kirkland were among the most notable ones featured.

 

Falls Artwalk - Miami

I'll be exhibiting "Images of Cuba" this evening at M&R (8825 SW 129 St. Miami). I am part of the Falls Art District Gallery Walk in Miami this evening from 7pm till whenever...Last month we got Rained out, however, tonight it should be great. The interesting thing is that M&R is an Auto Repair location by day and Art Space for the Artwalks. Come and enjoy the Artwalk.