The contact page of Walter van Dusen’s website features a picture of his daughter with a caption that reads “Every wedding that I photograph is preparing for my daughter Hannah’s wedding. That’s how important your wedding is to me”. And he means it. Some photographers approach weddings as cookie-cutter catalog work. New England-based Walter van Dusen approaches weddings with a passion.
With 20 years as a correction officer under his belt, Walter has the steely nerves required to deal with the heightened emotions and meltdowns that often go hand-in-hand with wedding days. Careful to avoid repetitive grip and grin-ish wedding photography, van Dusen makes a conscious effort to spend up-front time in order to get to know the soon-to-be-married couple, and sometimes their families and significant others in their lives.
Özkan Özmen at work
Özkan Özmen is a portrait photographer based in Frankfurt Germany with a penchant for photographing subjects that can bite your head off. No, we’re not talking about models and celebrities with attitude here. We’re talking lions, tigers, and rhinos. As Dorothy famously said to the tin man… “Oh MY!”
According to Özkan, he’s always been into things that crawl, chirp, growl, and purr, and it wasn’t long after he began taking shooting studio portraits for a living that he decided to put together a compact lighting kit and try his luck outside of the comforts and convenience of his studio. Özkan Ozmen’s personal project ultimately took him on a multi-continent journey in which he’s captured wonderful portraits of the sort of wildlife most of us only see in zoo and safari parks, though seldom as in-your-face.
Özkan understood the logistics – not to mention danger involved in trying to capture tight portraits of wild animals using lights. Still and all, rather than being technically boxed in by the harsh ambient lighting conditions common to shooting in the extreme locales he planned on visiting, his goal was to light his subjects and select-focus at wider lens apertures similar to the way he would when shooting portraits in his studio.
Clickin Moms, the largest, fastest-growing, members-only online community of women in photography, is offering an educational session with Melody Hood called “Creating Light with Melody Hood.” Full details are available here.
“Creating Light” is a Breakout Session that gives you an inside look into the thought process that goes into determining how, when, and why you should light your subjects. Covering everything from metering to hiding unsightly backgrounds, Melody will explain how she lights everything from everyday sessions to wedding receptions.
Studio Portraits with Mirrorless Cameras and Off-Camera Flash
Brought to you by PocketWizard and Sekonic
If you thought mirrorless cameras were simply for travel and party snapshots, think again. We’re going to show you how to get truly professional results with this new class of cameras. The surprise (that is no surprise) is great photographs are created with great light and great cameras, especially mirrorless!
Join host Joe Brady during this studio portrait shoot as he shares an essential group of techniques and lighting styles you can use to create your own beautiful portraits.
What you’ll learn:
In this free Webinar, we’ll cover high-key and low-key lighting, posing, camera and light position in 1-, 2- and 3-light setups for maximum beauty with minimal gear.
Taking your flash off your camera is the first step in making “pictures” become “portraits.” PocketWizard radio triggers are the invisible, dependable link between your camera and your flashes, and featured in this Webinar as a key tool for those who want to be a professional photographer.
Controlling light is a skill you can use to distinguish your photography from others vying for the same business. A little knowledge about light goes a long, long way, and using a Sekonic light meter gives you a creative edge.
From start to finish, you will learn how to control and choose light for your subject to create beauty, drama, shape and dimension.
Join Joe Brady as he shows you how to change how you shoot with mirrorless – from “taking” photos to “making” portraits.
Originally shown live 8 August 2013 with host Joe Brady, this Webinar has been archived for viewing.
Off-camera flash done two ways. Find out which style might work best for you!
When adding light to your portraits, it’s clear that off-camera flash produces the most natural and beautiful results. The question that remains is how to best control the flash. Should you use your camera’s TTL metering system or is it best to take control and go full manual?
In this video Webinar presented by PocketWizard, guest photographer Rick Sammon joins host Joe Brady as they do an environmental portrait shoot using both methods. Rick is a master at making TTL off-camera flash easy and effective while Joe prefers full manual control for consistency and repeatability.
Which style is best for you?
Join us for this friendly battle between Rick and Joe as they each show their process for controlling off-camera flash for environmental portraits. Take advantage of the live chat as Rick and Joe will take your questions and discuss the features and benefits of each style. You may choose one side or the other, or perhaps even combine both – but whichever way you decide, this will be a fun and informative presentation!
Date: 11 July 2013
Time: 1:00pm EDT
Title: To TTL or Not to TTL?
Presenters: Joe Brady and Rick Sammon
Archived Webinar: http://www.pocketwizard.com/videos/education/webinar20
Join host Mark Wallace for a live Webinar on Thursday, June 27, 2013 at 1:00 pm EST. Mark will give a thorough overview of PocketWizard’s revolutionary HyperSync® technology while using the latest firmware. You’ll learn how to extend the capabilities of your studio strobes for location work when shooting in bright sunlight. Mark will cover the basics of sync speed and the limitations photographers face when using traditional methods.
Mark will then explain how HyperSync works using animations, whiteboard illustrations, and live demonstrations in the studio. Finally, Mark will show you how to put everything into practice by showing an actual shoot on-location.
This live Webinar includes plenty of time for questions and answers. Join us and learn what HyperSync can do for you.
Originally broadcast on June 27th, 2013, this Webinar is now available as an archive on this page.
© 2012 Stephanie Zettl
Wedding and portrait photographer Stephanie Zettl, author of The Nikon Speedlight Handbook, strives to tell stories through her photos. In this post, Stephanie shares some behind the scenes details from a senior portrait session, giving us the how and why of how she got the shot.
Good portrait photography tells a story about your subject. Both your location and your style of lighting will have an impact on the story you tell and the way you tell it. Being a good portrait photographer requires you to make conscious decisions about your lighting to tell a story properly.
Mandy is a talented, intelligent, and accomplished young lady with big dreams. When she showed up for her senior portrait session with a beautiful red dress and a pair of black pointe ballet shoes, I knew I wanted to highlight her elegant form and still give her a sense of strength and power. An old vacant church with large stone pillars proved the perfect backdrop to convey that sense of strength.
Viridian © 2012 Ed McGowan
A designer by trade, Ed McGowan picked up his studio’s DSLR in 2008 and has been hooked ever since. His delicately composed shots lie right at the intersection between design and photography. Below, his account of Viridian.
The idea for this portrait came the day before when some co-workers and I were exploring a little creek down the road. The creek itself was not too impressive, but I started to think of ways to disguise and transform it with the use of some clever photography. One of the ways was to use short DOF by shooting a wider aperture. The issue with shooting wide apertures is it tends to let in too much light. To counter this I used a ND filter. Since I knew we would be shooting in the later afternoon and the sun would be at the subjects back, I decided to use off-camera lighting to light the subject.
© 2012 Bobbi Lane
Join us on November 27, 2012 at 1pm EST for this free live video seminar sponsored by PocketWizard.
Spend an hour with guest photographer Bobbi Lane as she demonstrates the techniques used to create a conceptual image on location, a “romantic portrait”, perhaps as a gift from the bride to the groom. We’ll have Bobbi live in the studio where she can explain in detail the concept, the process, the tools and the final results to creating a beautiful image.
Learn how Bobbi uses fill flash to open shadows and create a more pleasing light and skin tone. While on-camera flash can provide fill, the light sources are still small and often don’t provide a soft and effective illumination. Bobbi will take the flash off camera, using the PocketWizard MiniTT1® and FlexTT5® to create a more pleasing light. Take advantage of the live chat room to ask Bobbi questions as she takes us through the creative process.
This Webinar has been archived, and can be found here.
© Chris Crisman 2012
Photographer Chris Crisman is known for his environmental portraiture, so he was a natural choice for Field and Stream’s annual Heroes of Conservation project. The goal of the project is to profile and recognize outdoorsmen and women who “embody the spirit of conservation.”
For the first part of what is to be a three-part series documenting some of the shoots from the project, Chris travels to North Carolina to meet and photograph Eddie Bridges, the founder of the North Carolina Wildlife Habitat Foundation.