Painting With Light

I am not very good at painting with light. I did this once before in high school and it wasn’t my strong suit. I’m not very creative when it comes to painting with light or at least I don’t feel that I am. With this assignment, I really struggled on designing an idea/concept for what I wanted my photographs to look like. I know we are exclusively critical of our artwork and that we should be confident in the photographs we produced but, in all honesty, I do not feel like this is my best assignment.

My first mistake was not scheduling my time properly to get this done sooner. I will be honest and say that I did this the weekend before it was due. I had  multiple ideas for photographs yet I didn’t execute those. My advice to future photographers is to really do research on painting with light, this is the best thing you can do yourself for this type of photography.

Below are my following images:

The first one is of my miniature Leaning Tower of Pisa. I put a gel on the flashlight of my phone and hit the statue from two different sides to light it up this way. I have two different photos using to different types of gels and taken from two different angles. This is kind of like a still life. The concept was because I thought how cool it would be to do a painting with light with the actually tower, but Im currently not in Italy.

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A painting with light concept using a miniature Leaning Tower of Pisa in the Wightman studio on Monday, Nov. 7, 2016.

 

The second image set was supposed to be done outdoors on location. Sadly, when I went on location my strobe was BROKEN! Like literally  broken so today (Monday, Nov. 7th) when this assignment was due I go together with my model and did a variation of the concept in-studio. I was really excited about this photo concept on location and kind of just settled with the in-studio shots. It could have been better, plus the rain was originally supposed to be fire from steel wool. Instead I had the rain be flower that I strobed blue and I strobed my subject in pink. Both the images below had different turn outs based on how much strobing I did of each color.

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Sophomore Nicole Banasch poses for a painting with light concept about walking the rain in the Wightman studio on Monday, Nov. 7, 2016.

I tried! I tried REALLY hard. What I have learned is sadly, I VERY DISLIKE painting with light.

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Fashion 101

Fashion photography is something I admire and aspire  to be able to do. I love editorial and high fashion photography the most. I get my inspiration from America’s Next Top Model and Vogue. I LOVE FASHION!! I know I am just an amature at this genre of photography, but I think I did a good job on my own for the first time.

For my first set of photos I shot my friend Tyler Hether. I have photographed him nude before for an art class and he was my best model. I love his features and wanted to kind of do an androgynous look with him. When I studied male fashion shoot it was the androgynous males that grabbed my attention. I took my scraf and have Tyler once again strip nude for the shoot and told him to model the scraf like his life depended on it. This was my favorite shoot, I think I did really well and I had a fashion major in the room with me making sure the clothing was looking good. We both agreed his shoot could have possibly run in a magazine. Below is Tyler.

Senior, Tyler Hether poses for a fashion shoot on Friday, Oct. 14th, 2016. Tyler is studiyng Broadcasting and Cinematic Arts here at CMU and on the side works as "DJ Hasty".

Senior, Tyler Hether poses for a fashion shoot on Friday, Oct. 14th, 2016. Tyler is studiyng Broadcasting and Cinematic Arts here at CMU and on the side works as “DJ Hasty”.

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This is similar to the set up I had. The softbox light was at like a power of 3.

 

My next shoot was with my sorority sister, Courtney Jessica. I originally wanted to have paint being thrown on her in a field while I shot her, but I was unable to get an second set of hands. So then I did some research and I found out about this cartoon face make-up and was like OMG I HAVE TO DO THIS! It just look so editorial and something that they would have done in ANTM. So I had her put on a low cut blouse and painted her face. There was a lot of struggles with these photos though, my strobes were not going off together and were either not enough light or were over exposing the image. I tried everything I knew how to do to fix the situation but it didnt help. I wanted a back light on her and a front light, but I didn’t get that. So the photos I got are a tad dark or a bit flat but they are still grogeous to me and she kind of looks like she came out of a cartoon. Below is Courtney.

Junior, Courtney Jessica poses on a graffiti wall on a railroad overpass on Saturday, Oct. 15, 2016. Courtney is studying to be a teacher and dabbles in modeling.

Junior, Courtney Jessica poses on a graffiti wall on a railroad overpass on Saturday, Oct. 15, 2016. Courtney is studying to be a teacher and dabbles in modeling.

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I had so many issues with these lights and moved them around a lot but this was the original set up. Both strobes were at 1/16 and 1/2 power.

Fashion is hard but I was able to get my photographs in 1/2 hour to an hour of shooting, despite any issues, that was becasue I had a vision, a plan. When shooting any type of photography make sure you have a plan and that you can work with what you have. NEVER BE DISAPPOITNED OR DISCOURAGED BY YOUR WORK! This can discourage your subject, when you love it and are feeling it and are happy the model can work better. With my photoshoot with Tyler everytime I made a sound of excitment or liked what I was doing, he got happier and was more comfortable. Make note of that.

Fashion In-Class

Last night we photographed FASHION!! I have always wanted to fashion photography since I started watching Americas Next Top Model. Low key that is why my camera is named Nigel the Nikon after the fantasically talented Nigel Barker. This day in class was my first chance to really do fashion photography and I couldnt be more geeked. I wish the assigment for this project was longer than two weeks, because I wanna keep going lol.

I actually had some stuggles in-studio during class time. I didn’t like the lighting set-up and didnt want to take too much time redoing the whole look, so I worked around it. First, my photos were way over-exposed and then they didnt have enought defintion. I still kind of think my in-studio photos could have been better and are a tad flat, but this was a learning experience one what vision I want for fashion photography.

My location lighting shoot was BEATUIFUL. I honestly think this is one of my best photos to date (Im probably going to say that continuously throughout the year lol). I knew I wanted to do a railraod shoot, so when we were moving locations that is waht I requested. I also got to shoot first and it was wonderful. My professor was right there with me and I actaully had a vision for this, so the model killed it. I got this shot in like 5 takes and I couldn’t be more proud.

Below are my images from the night with captions about each of the models. The girls this night were AMAZING and you need to check out the JRN 420 wordpress blog to look at my classmates photos as well.

Lighting on Location

This was a hard assignment for me, not in the terms of knowing how to use the lights but more of a scheduling issue. I had to work with people saying no and finding subjects, then work with their schedules and then mime. The worst challenge was that I got sick (soon learning it was strep) and could not shoot due to bed rest. This project was amazing in teaching me skills that come to planning, timing, and get the shot before it is too late, which is great because this assignment was about location lighting. LOL.

The first photos were actually the last pictures I took. I was going to originally do a sportriat, but sadly with my scheduling and being sick I was unable to work with an athlete’s schedule. So instead I decided to photograph one of my staff members. She is full of life and wanderlust, she is a character of her own. I wanted to photograph her in the morning and showcase her free spirit and lifestyle. I photographed here in the green house on campus, which it one of her favorite locations on CMU’s campus. Here is Katie Rae.

Big Rapids senior Katie Rae poses in the green house on the campus of Central Michigan University, Monday Oct. 3, 2016. "I don't think people in today's society appreciate nature enough. Plants, animals, and even the seasons have important lessons to teach us, but if we are too busy to go outside or look up from our phones we'll never be able to learn them," states Katie.

Big Rapids senior Katie Rae poses in the green house on the campus of Central Michigan University, Monday Oct. 3, 2016. “I don’t think people in today’s society appreciate nature enough. Plants, animals, and even the seasons have important lessons to teach us, but if we are too busy to go outside or look up from our phones we’ll never be able to learn them,” states Katie.

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This is similar to my set up, minus all the plants everywhere. Both strobes were at 1/16 power and at a wide angle.

The next set of photos I took were of two sisters of mine, Aubrie Clingaman and Nicole Banasch. They are both dance minors and apart of the dance company here at CMU. I wanted to photograph them with a bright blacklight, getting this halo effect and glow around them. We went downtown to the broadway theatre and took photos outside in the street. The BEST part of this shoot was that it was raining (now this didn’t help my health, because that’s how I got sick; TIP: be careful when shooting in the rain). There was this beautiful glow and amazing mood in the photos and it was exactly what I envisioned for this shoot.

Aubrie Clingaman (bottom) and Nicole Bannash (top) pose in the rain outside of Broadway Theater in downtown Mount Pleasant on Friday, Sep. 30, 2016. "Dance has always been a way for me to continued to be inspired and learn more about myself. I am thankful to have it as an escape to just breather with no pressure or stress involved," states Aubrie.

Aubrie Clingaman (bottom) and Nicole Bannash (top) pose in the rain outside of Broadway Theater in downtown Mount Pleasant on Friday, Sep. 30, 2016. “Dance has always been a way for me to continued to be inspired and learn more about myself. I am thankful to have it as an escape to just breather with no pressure or stress involved,” states Aubrie.

This is kind of the lighting set-up for this shoot. My dancers were next to each other with a strobe flash behind them and one off to the right as a wide angle and then my assistant held the gold side of a reflector off to the left.

This is kind of the lighting set-up for this shoot. My dancers were next to each other with a strobe flash behind them and one off to the right as a wide angle and then my assistant held the gold side of a reflector off to the left.

The best advice I can give is that it does not matter when you take the photo, but you need to know what you want the photo to look and feel like. This is what really matters. Fight for the shot you want and never try and work around what you are envisioning for the photo. This is assignment was hard and time consuming, but one of the best experiences.

Location Lighting In-Class

I have NEVER done location lighting before and I wanted to get a hang of things before I started shooting for this next assignment. This was such an amazing learning opportunity and it was great because my partner for the practice session is more experienced then I am with studio lighting techniques, so I felt comfortable learning from him. That would be my first advice to any future students, don’t just pair up with a friend, pair up with someone whose criticism you trust and who knows what they are doing. It is easier to learn from someone then to both be confused trying to learn together. Plus having a second set of eyes when shooting can help you find things you missed or don’t notice that will improve your photo (second set of advice).

This was an amazing hands on experience, yes we all had hands on experience before we shot in the studio but it was like 5 minutes per person and we did not learn how to set up everything one on one. With this practice it was like an 1 hour and a half devoted to us exploring and learning. I met some really nice and interesting people during this time. That is my third advice, DO NOT SHOOT YOUR PARTNER, instead find someone walking around and explain what you are doing, ask a stranger to pose for you. My partner and I were actually really nervous finding the first subject and we did not know who to ask or where to look in the area we went, but someone walked by and I built up the courage, walked over and was like “HEY YOU WANNA BE A MODEL FOR OUR PHOTO CLASS REAL QUICK” (or something along those lines). You CAN NOT BE AFRAID to talk to people you don’t know. Get outside your comfort zone. By asking strangers and finding interesting people we were able to create art not just a simple practice shoot.

I think this in-class activity taught me so much more then I could ask for and I could not be more grateful. Below I have added in my photos from the night. I put two shoots in from my two different shoots, one that shows my mistakes and what I learned and the other showing the amazing final result. (First it is the photograph that displays my mistakes and the next is the best one of the group and explains how the mistakes were fixed.) ENJOY.

Portraits of CMU Students

I have done portraits before, but normally by using a window light and make-shift studio or just having the subject be outdoors without any control of the lighting. I have always loved portraits and getting the opportunity to put subjects in a studio with full control of the lighting was amazing.I learned a lot too, I had some struggles with getting the strobe to go off and with figuring out how to set things up for the first time. I feel I took some of my best photos EVER these past two weeks.

My subject for these portraits were Madison McNamara and Jesse Evans. McNamara is a member of the color-guard and I new that when shooting her I wanted the light to be airy, light, glowing. I wanted her to be in uniform and with her flag of choice. When we worked together she made me happy to be a photographer, you know those subjects that when you are shooting you cant stop smiling, this was her. I originally wanted action shots of her twirling the flag, I just had her go to music shot as she moved. Slowly throughout both shoots with her I would pause her and have her either redo one move over and over for a shot or pose in certain positions. She was a joy to work with and someone I would want to use as a subject again.

The softbox was actually vertical and on full power. The hard light on the side might have been a little more angled and was around power 5. The back light was around 2-3 power. The camera was only connected to the softbox light

The softbox was actually vertical and on full power. The hard light on the side might have been a little more angled and was around power 5. The back light was around 2-3 power. The camera was only connected to the softbox light

Macomb sophomore, Madison McNamara has been a member of the Central Michigan Color-guard for the past two years. She has been involved in color-guard for six years total. "Honestly without color-guard I wouldn't be passionate about music. I wouldn't be involved in school spirit. It puts confidence in me, without it I would be shy and not so out there."

Macomb sophomore, Madison McNamara has been a member of the Central Michigan Color-guard for the past two years. She has been involved in color-guard for six years total. “Honestly without color-guard I wouldn’t be passionate about music. I wouldn’t be involved in school spirit. It puts confidence in me, without it I would be shy and not so out there.”

For my shoot with Jesse, I knew I wanted a more mood light, I wanted him to pop off the backdrop and to be slightly lit from behind (hopeful for a rim light). The original plan was to have his back like be two different colors, using gels. I actually could not find the gels when working, so I just used white light. His shot was all experimental for me and as a subject he was great by allowing me to find my music with the lighting. After we did a few shots on a black wall, I moved him to the main part of the studio and did a bucket load of photos in different outfits he had, full shots, close ups, etc.,  but the one that spoke to me with my vision was like in the first 20 photos I took of him. Sometimes that happens.

I was connected to the soft box and has the hard light on cell. Both lights were set at around a 1-3 power. I had Jesse stand slightly in front of the hard light and closer to the soft box for the angle of the lighting I wanted.

I was connected to the soft box and has the hard light on cell. Both lights were set at around a 1-3 power. I had Jesse stand slightly in front of the hard light and closer to the soft box for the angle of the lighting I wanted.

Harrison Township senior, Jesse Evans, has been a DJ and EDM music producer for two years. "I was the only one to not do anything musically in my family. I went to Electric Forest and that was when I realized that is (DJ and produce) what I wanted to do the rest of my life. As long as my heart is beating, I am making music."

Harrison Township senior, Jesse Evans, has been a DJ and EDM music producer for two years. “I was the only one to not do anything musically in my family. I went to Electric Forest and that was when I realized that is (DJ and produce) what I wanted to do the rest of my life. As long as my heart is beating, I am making music.”

What I loved most about this assignment was the fact that I was able to capture two COMPLETELY  different images and moods with my images, just by changing the lighting direction I wanted to use. I feel like I made some amazing photos for a future portfolio and just my own personal growth as a photographer.