Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Food Thirty

Last thursday I had the opportunity to photograph a food event for my friend's mom. I've never really shot food seriously before so I was interested in the new experience. I didn't really know what to expect so I packed two lenses and one camera. A Canon 18-55mm F/3.5-5.6 and a Nikon Nikkor 50mm F/1.4D to accompany my Canon T2i. Upon arrival, I soon found out I would actually be shooting mostly in the kitchen while the food was being prepared. The kitchen itself had decent room to work so I opted for a no flash, large aperture look, as not to disturb the people preparing the food. Considering I would be there for some of food making. I decided to go a bit photojournalist and layout the photos in a linear manner as they came together. As the dinner service began things started moving very fast, and I forgot how hot it gets in a kitchen. Ordered are being handled and the kitchen is in full swing, what was once full counters, are becoming increasingly barren. The food goes out and things begin to settle down. I'm done shooting and begin to enjoy my share of the food. As I thought about this assignment after completion, I realized it was actually a lot like shooting an event. Things are fast paced, people are moving all over, and time is of the essence. If there is one thing I've learned shooting events, it's be confident, not only in your own abilities but of others. Don't be afraid to get in the zone and get that shot, it very rarely presents itself again. Big thanks to Emmy Fishman for allowing me to photograph this for her. Thanks for stopping by.


1/60s,  F/2.8,  ISO 1600

Chicken, Chorizo, Rice, and Veggies

1/60s,  F/2.8,  ISO 1600

Stuffed shrooms

1/50s,  F/2.8,  ISO 1600

So it begins

Workin it

1/60s,  F/2.8,  ISO 3200

1/100s,  F/2.8,  ISO 3200

Finishing touches

1/100s,  F/2.2,  ISO 3200


1/160s,  F/3.5,  ISO 3200

1/125s,  F/2.4,  ISO 3200

1/200s,  F/2.0,  ISO 3200

Simple concept, Strong results

1/160s,  F/2.0,  ISO 3200

Making the whip cream for dessert

I used a "slower" shutter speed to capture the movement of this beast in action

1/200,  F/5.6,  ISO 3200

Delicious Dessert

1/125s,  F/1.8,  ISO 3200

The man behind the lens wearing a hair net. Le Chao


Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Let It Simmer

I love street photography. Anyone who knows me well enough or follows my work has heard me talk about it numerous times. It's a rush, pure and simple. Just like a junkie its addicting and can even be dangerous. With that being said, sometimes a little break is needed to refresh, rethink, reevaluate and to observe things that inspire you. I've been reading a lot of material from international street photographer Eric Kim ( ). Eric's work is pretty amazing as he's been all over the world to capture great street shots. One thing he preaches often is not posting your work right away. The theory is that like a good wine or my personal favorite tequila, the longer you let them sit, the better they get. This theory applies to an extent, if your photo is no good to begin with, it wont get any better with time. The thought is that you'll have a better understanding, depth, attention to detail, and perspective on your work. You may possibly see things you didn't before, maybe you just didn't like it at the time, a lot of factors are involved when you do this. Going through my last visit to Phoenix I saw some photos I've been sitting on and figured i'd share them with you. The last photo is one from here in Tucson. I was able to get that shot while driving on my way to work. I always carry the camera in the passenger seat just in case I happen to see something. 90% of street photography is being there and having your camera ready, even if you're driving. The best cameras in the world wont point themselves at the moment and capture them, it's up to you.

All photos on this post taken with a Canon EF-S 18-55mm F/3.5-5.6 mounted on a Canon T2i body

This man kept walking in circles, head pointed down the whole time

1/250s,  F/8.0,  ISO 1600

1/250s,  F/8.0,  ISO 1600

1/500s,  F/8.0,  ISO 1600

1/1250s,  F/8.0,  ISO 1600

Wearing the shirt of the band you're going to see, don't be that guy

1/1250s,  F/8.0,  ISO 3200

1/3200s,  F/8.0,  ISO 3200

It's march and it's Phoenix, AZ and he's wearing a hoodie

1/1000s,  F/8.0,  ISO 400



Open Your Eyes

Friday evening I had pleasure of working with the lovely Lola. This shoot was going to be a challenging shoot from the original idea. I wanted to shoot with Lola in a wash I've recently discovered that is covered in awesome art, and do it all at night. This art i'm referring to is often called graffiti. You can feel however you want about it, but for me, I get it. I get the idea of creating something beautiful from nothing, because let me tell you something. There is some pretty amazing work out there, you just have to keep your eyes and mind open. Considering it was night time, I would need at least one light source. I wanted a directional and dramatic lighting setup for this shoot. I used my streamlight flashlight with a piece of 8x11 paper wrapped around it in a cone shape. During a few photos I even used my iphone camera light to illuminate the background and lower sections. I work in a very unorthodox manner at times and I'm curious to see the results I can achieve. This type of shoot was a bit different in many ways considering it's a combination of many styles. We even managed to get in some light painting shots, which is always fun. Overall it was a great shoot and we were really happy with the end product.

All photos on this post taken with a Nikon Nikkor 50mm F/1.4D mounted on a Canon T2i body

Often your first shot of the session is a clear winner

1/50s,  F/2.4,  ISO 1600

1/60s,  F/2.4,  ISO 1600

1/50s,  F/2.8,  ISO 1600

1/50s,  F/2.4,  ISO 1600

1/40s,  F/2.0,  ISO 3200

Lola shows off her skills

1/30s,  F/1.8,  ISO 3200

RC likabauss

1/30s,  F/2.0,  ISO 3200

1/60s,  F/2.0,  ISO 3200

Le Chao gets down

Photo by: Lola Mae

30s,  F/8,  ISO 100

Flash light used as light douce


Saturday, May 25, 2013

Casting Call

This past Sunday I had the privilege of shooting my first casting call for YourPinUps. When I think about it, the first time I was introduced to the lovely ladies at YourPinUps, it was at a casting call. At that point in January I was not quite as known within the Tucson photo industry. It's currently May and I can firmly say I think a few more people know who I am and what I can do. As with any art form, the more you do it the better you become at it. Rewind to the beginning of 2013, I remember telling myself that this year was going to be a big change, a year I would challenge myself, and take the next step in my photography. Sunday went really well and everyone had a great time. My lighting setup consisted of two Photoflex Starflash 650w strobes, combined with either a 6 inch come reflector and silver reflective umbrellas. One of the shots was a large group photo of all the ladies on the bar. For that particular photo I used one of the Starflash strobes to the left of camera about 7 feet tall, with only a 6 inch cone reflector. Another Starflash strobe was used to the right of camera about 7 feet tall, with a 42 inch reflective umbrella attached. Lastly, a large white reflector was used to bounce some of light coming from camera right onto the background. I felt using the reflector was the final touch to the lighting, creating some seperation between the models and the background, considering I did not have a third strobe.  Ever since I acquired my Photoflex Starflash strobes I have been nothing but impressed by their operation, reliability, and durability. It just goes to show how much you can accomplish with a simple two light setup and some reflectors.

All Photo on this post taken with a Canon EF-S 18-55mm F/3.5-5.6 lens mounted on a Canon T2i body

Group photo on the bar

1/200s,  F/8.0,  ISO 100

650w Starflash unit left of camera set to 1/2 power
650w Starflash unit right of camera set to 1/4 power