I recently did a portrait shoot with this actress and model who’s picture is above. Although we briefly talked before the shoot, it was our first time meeting in person. When doing a shoot with someone I have never met before I generally ask questions about them and tell them a little about myself in order to find something we may have in common and to break the ice. Our discussion led us to talk about various creative outlets and the like. One thing that came up was the fact that when being a creative person and providing a service for others with that creative outlet problems can arise. One of the most important things I do as a photographer is being a problem solver.
There are times when a client might come to me and need a particular photo for something and I have to figure out how to come through with the image that want. That also includes considering any sort of budget they may be on. A good example is the image above and the two images below. These photos were taken in the living rooms of these peoples homes. The image above was used for this gentleman’s album cover. The image below was used for acting headshot. The image below that was used for his business. I offer a mobile studio and I am able to go to my clients homes, set up, and get them the images they need without the cost of renting a studio.
As someone who is running a business and offering a service I am a big advocate of being able to meet clients needs with whatever they may want. One big factor in photography is understanding light and how light works. There are a lot of photographers out there who tag themselves as natural light photographers. A natural light photographer is someone who uses the sun or available light sources in order to light the scene for the photograph. That is fine and there is nothing wrong with that. Natural light can be beautiful light. However, being solely a natural light photographer can also limit oneself and it might mean missing out on certain clientele. Below are a couple more images that I made without the use of a studio. These were both done in a parking garage with flash in order for maximum control of the light from the sun.
In closing, I guess the big take away and point of me writing this is just to express that as someone who is offering a service, part of our job is to problem solve. And problem solving involves a certain amount of creativity in and of itself. There was a time in the past where I had a studio. However, in the times that I did not, I had to get creative on ways to deliver.
Back in October of 2021 I did a quick portrait session of this couple at the State Fair Of Texas. They recently reached back out and booked a family portrait session for Christmas. I ended up making lots of great photos of this beautiful family. It’s such an honor to work with clients who appreciate your work and keep coming back for more.
It’s been a several years since I had been to the State Fair of Texas. I saw a post online where someone was looking to get some portraits made there. I replied to the post and ended up booking the portrait session. Here are some of the portraits I made that afternoon.
A few years ago I decided that I wanted a compact digital camera that I could take just about everywhere with me so that I could photograph my children, anything I found interesting, and just document every day life. After doing some extensive research and after already owning a Fuji brand camera in the past (the Fuji xt10), I decided to go with the Fuji x100 series. I knew I wanted to buy a used camera so that I could save a little cash. Shout out to Used Photo Pro , MPB , and KEH , which is where I purchase most of my used gear from. Just about the time I decided to make the purchase the newest version of the Fuji x100 series was released, the Fuji X100v. So inevitably the previous version dropped in price. I found a used copy of the x100f that was practically new, with only a few hundred shots taken on it.
Once I got the camera I set up some custom profiles and looks that I wanted to use as the Fuji digital cameras have very good film simulations within the interface. I started taking this camera everywhere with me. I really enjoy the semi wide angle 35mm equivalent lens that is attached. I find it to be a really good focal length to capture the majority of scenes that I want to photograph. However, me being mostly a portrait photographer over the years, I knew I wanted to eventually use the x100f for a portrait shoot. So that’s exactly what I did.
Yesterday I held, what I call, a mini photography workshop. Two other photographers, a model, and myself got together for a couple of hours and talked photography. My goal was to figure out where both photographers were at in their journey, and help them gain a better understanding of their craft. In the mini workshops I generally go over understanding exposure, shooting in manual mode, how to figure out how to change settings on the fly, as well as flash, composition, and anything else that comes up. What I enjoy most about teaching these workshops is seeing others grasp concepts about something they are passionate about.
I was in Wichita Kansas back in August for business with the company I work for full time. Obviously being a passionate photographer I’m going to bring my camera with me. I do both portraits and street photography on a regular basis as I enjoy photographing people and documenting every day life.
The above photo is a portrait I made while in Wichita in August.
The camera is a tool people use on a daily basis, especially now with decent cameras in just about every phone. As photographers we can create stories with a single image, and those stories can be made to tell a story that the photographer wants to be told. That story can be capturing a moment that tells the viewer a truth about life, or that story can be made to communicate something that isn’t actually true at all.
I made the above photograph of this young couple back in August. I had walked past these people a few times as they were hanging out around the Old Town area of downtown Wichita while I was doing photography. It seemed as though they were having a good time together. I assumed they were on a date. I decided to go back to a spot across Old Town that I wanted to photograph again. This couple had stopped and the guy pulled out his phone to use it. As I was passing the young lady folded her arms and looked the opposite direction. I ended up publishing this imagine to social media and the caption read “pay attention to the lady, not the phone”. Sometimes you get lucky when doing street photography. I feel this image sends a clear message even though I don’t think she was frustrated at all with her date. A second earlier or later could have told a completely different story, just with a turn of the head, a shift of weight from one leg to the other, or the arms in a different position. Since we can’t see her face we can only make assumptions about this image, and the title can lead the viewer to believe one thing over another. That’s the power of a photograph.
The above photograph was taken in a stairway leading from the bottom of a parking garage to the top. As I was coming down from the top of the parking garage I noticed this image and I knew I wanted to capture it. I ended up publishing this photo on social media too. Once I got back home to the Dallas area and I saw this image on the screen of my laptop and I had the idea of making a portrait in this space. The only problem was this stairway was several hundred miles away. Well, I got the opportunity to return to Wichita for business again at the end of September. I decided to take more photographs from the top of the parking garage where the stairway is located. This time on the way down I see a photographer doing some portraits. We strike up a conversation and come to find out both people are photographers. The one taking pictures is a photography student and the one who is having her picture made is a photographer who has started a business. We show each other some of our work and I explain how the last time I came here I took a photo of the stairway and wanted to make a portrait. I ended up making the image below of one of the ladies in which that day happened to be her birthday too. ( It was nice meeting you and I hope you had a great birthday).
Here are a couple more I made on the second trip to Wichita.
Earlier this year I joined a single parents group on Facebook to connect with others who are in similar situations raising children. Recently I got asked by a lady in the group if I would do a Halloween shoot with a group of ladies who are in a single working moms group. I agreed.
This was a super fun photo shoot and I met some very awesome ladies. Before we wrapped up the shoot they suggested I get a photo with all of them. That’s actually something that I’ve been wanting to do with all of my clients but ends up slipping my mind. I’m glad I got this photo with them.