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Friday, March 22, 2013

Professional Portrait Photography, Too

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I hope you have been enjoying the wildlife photography, especially that recent post with the "energetic bathing goose" and my Puerto Rican bird collection. You can see earlier posts by following the links under the Blog Archive on the right.

Now, for something completely different, this photograph above and the six images below were part of series from a recent assignment I had to do executive portraits of the local branch of a national company for their website and other PR uses. Shooting these types of images is of course quite different from doing wildlife photography. Everything is controlled in doing formal studio portraiture: the venue, the background, the lights, the poses, and even the clothing worn by the subject. In addition, shooting executive portraits for a business web site requires maintaining a consistent look and feel in terms of lighting, pose, background and attire. 

Most everyone dislikes having their photograph done this way, but I have developed the ability to make my subjects feel at ease and relaxed, even those whom one would think would be a real challenge. The final images speak for themselves, and the client was very pleased. 

I've been doing portraits for many years, and because one has to eat, studio portraits are the bread and butter for a photographer. Nevertheless, I really prefer to shoot in a non-formal setting where I can move around or move the subject around to get the best shot. The conditions are less controlled, particularly in terms of light, but the resulting images are fresh and dynamic. What follows are some favorite portraits from my collection of personal as well as commercial work, done outside the formal setting of a photography studio. 

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Until next time, be sure to sign up with your email address in the box on the right at the top of the blog to get regular updates, and leave me a comment in the comment box at the end of any post if you'd like to share anything about photography, have questions, etc.


Friday, March 1, 2013

Energetic Bathing Goose and Panoramic Lake Views in Monochrome

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[Note to Lake Barcroft Bike Club members: This is an adaptation of my most recent Bike Club Blog Post.]

This week, Wednesday's prediction for mid-50's temperatures spurred me to hit the road on my bike, camera on my back, but that forecast proved to be a bit of a bust with the clouds and chilly breezes. Nevertheless, your intrepid blogger set out alone, my trusty but new Canon 7D DSLR with a 70-200mm lens securely stowed in my sling bag for ready access, and took off for a ride around the lake, 

At Beach 4, stopping to breathe in the cool afternoon lake air, I came across two geese at the water's edge, and suddenly saw this hilarious scene, with this one goose doing flips in the water, which repeated several times. This was a first for me to observe, so I had to capture it on camera. I apologize if some of you have already seen this series of photos, which i call "Energetic Bathing by Canada Goose," but for those who havent seen them, here they are. Click on each for a larger view.

The sky was richly textured with thick grey and white clouds with the sun peeking out occasionally, so I decided to use the panorama feature of my iPhone to capture the scene. 
That thought led to the idea of taking panoramas of all the beaches at Lake Barcroft and the view from the Women's Garden as well. 

Here are the results, presented in the order taken, as I rode around the lake. First, Beach 4:
Be sure to click on the image to get a larger view:
Lake Barcroft, Beach 4
 Beach 1.

Lake Barcroft, Beach 1
Beach 2.

Lake Barcroft, Beach 2
Women's Garden and a view from there over the lake.

View from the Women's Garden, Lake Barcroft
Beach 3.

Lake Barcroft, Beach 3
Beach 5.

Lake Barcroft, Beach 5
I still have plenty of photos to process from Puerto Rico, but wanted to share these first to show what you can do with the iPhone's camera combined with Adobe Lightroom.

I hope you all enjoy the photos.