I think I have said it before on the blog that head shots are more important in today’s world than ever. They are needed for business profiles, casting agencies, social media and many other uses.
A good head shot can go along way.
The images here are from a head shot session with the lovely Lynne who is a natural in front of the camera I might add.
Head shots can have many styles/looks but for this session we stuck with some more formal/professional business head shots on the tried and true white and grey backgrounds. A head shot is after all about the person & brand.
To me this means that often clean and simple rules the day.
If you are in need of new head shots for you or your business I would love to hear from you. Thanks for reading. Rick
Ann was kind enough to give up some of her time for me to photographer her for this project. So far I have photographed 5 people for it in between client work and I am not done yet.
These sessions are not always planned out or premeditated. Sometimes you just have to get together with a person, camera and some light and make portraits.
That said I did have an idea that I wanted to try for this session… more on that later.
Ann was a gem to work with, such a nice lady.
As you can see, I stuck to the red background for this session. No big reason other than I like the colour and it’s been a while since I had shot on it.
One thing I am realising with this project is you learn a few things about yourself and the way you work whilst shooting them. Some good, some bad… ultimately, it’s all good because I am learning.
On to some images.
Red on red just works.
The last set of the session was something I have wanted to try for a while. It’s nothing technical camera or light wise but instead something different to draw something from Ann / my portrait subject.
I had Ann put a fav CD on (which was Luther Vandross by the way) and I made the studio dark. No overheads, no modelling lamps. The camera was locked down, manually focused and dialled in to F11.
A simple 3 light setup was dialled in and I just let the music play and Ann enjoy listening to it.
No talking, no direction. This was just Ann and her fav album.
Now I understand that this situation can be somewhat unusual. “ Hi you don’t know me yet but I would like to turn all the lights out, play your music and shoot some images of you”. I know it won’t be for everyone, but Ann took it in her stride and as you can see even had some fun during it. Thank you, Ann, for being a great sport.
I checked the first 2-3 frames to make sure things were firing ok then I ignored the LCD just shot when I felt the need to. Below are the results.
This #makeportraits shoot was a little different as in I was photographing another photographer. Rob is a local photographer who shoots portraits and gigs. He has also attended a few of my workshops and events this year for which I am thankful for.
Rob was also gracious enough to visit the studio for a couple of hours to let me #makeportraits of him. We talked about photography, our work and our struggles along with what’s happening in the industry. It’s always good to sit and talk with someone who works in the same industry as you do because you can both vent, ask questions and generally talk shop.
Before I get in to all that let’s get to the images.
Ahh the good old shoot through umbrella. My very first light modifier.
I have been told before that my style is bold, true and clean. Personally, I have been trying to figure more out about it and it’s not easy. You see when someone asks you to describe your style you become the little kid on stage at your first school play… your mind goes blank and you freeze.
It’s a strange thing but I am getting it figured out. The first set above has elements of my earlier work and I like that, more on this later.
The next set was something a little more dramatic using the same umbrella. It really is the Swiss Army knife of light modifiers.
We kept with this look but changes the set to provide something darker still. I sat Rob down in my directors chair ( yes I have one ) and we set to work.
During the shoot we discussed what we used to do for work and also wanted to do. Robs dream was to be an Astronaut and he had a NASA top with him. Ok let’s shoot that.
I went back to the good old umbrella and added another light to hit the NASA logo and US flag on the front left chest of the top. Hope you like it Rob and if you ever get hold of a full space suit give me a shout.
Funnily enough photography was not even a though of mine when I was a kid. It was in my early 20’s that I first picked up a camera.
Thank you Rob for your time and company at the studio. Door is always open bud.
If you would like to be part of #makeportraits you can
This is one of those shoot’s I meant to blog but then got busy and totally forgot. #mybad
Back in Feb 2017 Katie visited the studio for a shoot. Pretty sure it had been a good 2-3 years since we last worked together. Must not let that happen again.
The title image of this blog post shows the BTS. It’s rare I will shoot on a tripod unless I’m shooting product work but at times it is worth it for portraits to give you a consistent framing and a fixed camera position for the subject to play to.
To start with we worked with seated portraits on the ridiculously high stool I bought from Tesco’s last year.
I find that having a client or subject sit down is an easier way to start a shoot and it can help make them feel at ease. Katie has no problem getting straight in to a shoot.
On to some images.
After that set we kept the lighting pretty much the same ( 3 lights ) and worked on some stood portraits which can give a little more range for poses.
Katie is great at working the camera and takes direction really well during a shoot. She also makes some great prep meals for healthy eating over at Katies KitchFix go check them out.
To wrap the shoot we shot a few simple head shots using the Saber Strip and a 7ft Umbrella for fill. It gives a real nice light that Saber strip.
Over the last 6 months or so I have been doing research in to food photography. This has been in the form of online courses and in person workshops with Scott Choucino and Holly Bell.
I have been chomping at the bit (pun intended) to get shooting some food work here is the first bit. More will be coming in the new year ( once the hangover has gone ).
The last thing I want to do in this short but sweet post (again with the puns) is say thank you to Scott and Holly for their workshops and openness to share tips and info.. It’s up to me to build a team and put it all and myself to work.
Thank you for reading.
P.S – I am looking to connect with local food stylists, foodies and people who would like to work to create some tasty (OMG stop it Rick) food photography. If you know someone or you are that someone please get in touch.
I would like to start this post by saying thank you to Caroline for allowing me in to her home to photograph her and literally the day after she had returned from Holiday as well. Also thank you to the gent that is Mark Sands-Foy for putting me in touch with Caroline.
With #makeportraits I am spending time getting to know the person in front of the lens and making a portrait that is them and some cool shots as well. Less posed and more story / body language.
When you are walking in to a location that you don’t know you have to start thinking on your feet to find shots and spaces to light/shoot in. Camera, Lens, Light…. And ohh that’s a cool looking background.
Some places are better than others but I will take them over setting up a seamless at the moment. Don’t get me wrong I love shooting in studio and have done for #makeportraits, but I will see if I can get access to their space (home, workplace, location) to change things up when possible.
Caroline was gracious enough to let me and my gear take over her home for a couple of hours.
The first thing I spotted when entering her home was that cool as hell parrot and flower wall paper in the kitchen and I knew we would shoot in that space first.
Caroline is a cool lady to photograph and chat to, this meant that I was feeling comfortable and welcome as soon as I walked in the door. We talked about life, family, holiday locations and the world in general. The time flew by.
After shooting some head shots for Ozzy I asked if it’s ok to shoot some additional images, he kindly said yes.
Whenever I can I will get the shots wanted in the bag and then try to shoot something extra or different. It gives me new images and it can give a client options.
Ozzy was such a gent to work with and could not have been more engaged in the process.
Most head shots and portraits I shoot in the studio are against simple plain backgrounds because they are clean, simple and stand the test of time. The main reason for wanting to shoot some extra images was to see what a new background looked like in camera and to change it up a little.
So far, I am liking the look and option it brings. On to the images.
Thank you Ozzy for your time and thanks everyone for reading. Rick
I photograph people a lot and it’s my first love in photography, product Photography is a close second.
It’s relaxing to be locked (not literally) in your studio with just you, a product and your camera/lights. I can zone out and focus on the work and not tripping over the 7 plus light stands I have deployed.
Products are the smaller subjects that I photograph yet they end up requiring the most gear to be used…. Go figure.
If anyone is wondering the shoes are great, I bought a pair. Very comfortable for walking in…. what you think I’m going to go running? Images after the jump.