Girls varsity basketball team member Linnae Harper poses outside Whitney M. Young Magnet High School in Chicago. Harper, a 5 foot 7 inch senior who plays the point guard position, is set to attend the University of Kentucky in the fall.
When I received my requests to shoot portraits of members of the USA Today All-USA High School Basketball Team, I was given little more than each player’s contact information and a deadline date. With everything up to me (including scheduling the shoots themselves) and no specific look to follow, the creative wheels in my brain started turning on how I could make each portrait unique and polished without necessitating a grip truck in the process.
Gavit High School varsity girls basketball team member Hattie Andrews poses during practice at the school in Hammond, Indiana. The 6’3″ sophomore has been playing basketball since the third grade.
As a lighting designer, one of the best things about location film and photography work is the always-challenging task of transforming an everyday space into an attractive environment for the lens. More often than not, I enter new locations flying blind, having never visited the space before. I never know exactly what I’m getting into, which often causes a mixture of excitement and anxiety. Have I brought enough equipment to light the space, and more importantly, the subjects within? For video shoots, is there enough power? Will I be fighting bright light from windows during a daytime shoot? Can I capitalize on any existing fixtures within the building to create something special in an otherwise bland location?
Dancer and choreographer Asia Dickens poses for a portrait at Marquette Beach in Gary, Indiana. The ability to make your subject laugh is often helpful in capturing honest, relaxed moments.
It’s been a while since I shared one of those career-suicide morsels of truth with you all, and with summer slowly melting into fall, I figured now was as good a time as any to boost the confidence of you new-comers to the photography world. So, here goes: Posing people for portraits was, and sometimes is, a very awkward thing for me to deal with on a shoot.
Posted in Photography
on September 15th, 2010. 1 Comment
Jonathon Curry poses for a senior portrait, Wednesday, May 26, 2010. Small, battery operated flash units were used for a polished look in this location which was without A/C power.
Now that you’ve successfully chewed and swallowed that first morsel of truth I dished out in my last entry, I think you’re ready for another: I have a hard time keeping things simple. Perhaps that’s because, in my mind, “simple” often equates to mediocrity. Mediocrity terrifies me more than almost anything in life, more than wasps, accidentally falling into large bodies of water at night, and marriage… combined! Naturally, then, I make sure that even small jobs I take on have some room for me to add my signature style to separate them from the rest.
Posted in Photography
on June 8th, 2010. 6 Comments