Thursday, August 7, 2008

atlanta photographers guild

After a light july which I recently talked about, I had the good fortune of finding some time to go to an Atlanta Photographers Guild meeting. I had been trying to get to one for a few months but something always stood in the way. They meet at this little bar near downtown Atlanta and when I showed up I was surprised by how many people where there. I can see why. They had about 6 models to shoot and a great environment for it. What a blast and how fun it was to take some pictures.

Here is one that I took of one of the models. I tried to create an interesting environment for all my shots. Not just a color or background, but an element that made the image of the model have more impact. I think this is a good example of that effort and it is actually my favorite image. I think the snake is so cool and adds a nice touch. Her back to the snake was unplanned but interesting. I could probably contrive some symbolism but it was unintentional.

Like I said, it was great to shoot and I am looking forward to the next time.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

light july

i haven't had as much time to shoot over the last month as i would have liked. i was busy with other things that took priority but for me this is how it goes. i know the opportunities will present themselves soon. i did have a couple shots that i took on one rainy afternoon and will share them here. hope you enjoy them.

Monday, July 28, 2008


This photograph is an image of my friend Dirk. My family and his were spending some time together at their lake house and I was able to get some great shots of him and his family. Last week, Dirk moved 1,000 miles away. Making a move like that was once so uncommon but today we have become a much more mobile society. Personally I grew up moving around quite frequently. I think this made me look for few but very close relationships and my friendship with Dirk is a great example. He will be missed but my experience has been that these distances are a difficult thing to overcome. I hope it is different with him.

His move made me think about our friendship and I concluded something interesting about him and me. We met about seven years ago when my wife and I moved across the street from his family. We became fast friends because we shared many of the same interests. We also share a pretty dominant Type A personality, but I think meeting in our 30s (when we were seemingly more mature) helped us tolerate each other. If we met in college or in high school, I am pretty sure he would have beat me up. In our 30s we didn't care as much about one being better than the other at something (I said we didn't care "as much"). Fortunately we met at the right time and formed a great bond.

I am certainly missing my good friend.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

what they say about Vegas isn't true

I thought there was this pithy little phrase about "What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas." I was not so fortunate on my first experience in sin city.

I just got back from a trip out there with a couple buddies. We had a great time and I can assure you that all we did was hop from table to table in casino to casino. We gambled for about 25 of the 40 hours we were there. When I walked in the door my wife asked me if I had fun. Yes I did have fun (thinking, ok she is not going to ask me about how much I lost). But then she brought the hammer down. I ducked and weaved but eventually was caught and had no other choice than to pull out everything I had left from my pocket.

This picture was it. There was $2.50 left and $2 of that wasn't even legal tender. It was all worth it. After all, I was just paying for the entertainment and Vegas earned a tidy profit for all their effort.

Can't wait to go back but need to be prepared next time.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

goodsell amplifiers #6

This is my last image that I plan to discuss from this shoot. Hopefully you found my experience interesting. During the shoot, one of the concepts that Richard continued to want in the images were believability. He was very particular about how the amp was placed in the studio. What we showed in the studio. And how the models interacted with the equipment.

He mentioned that he got a lot of comments about Tamra from his last advertising campaign. In particular many did not believe Tamra could play the guitar. It is probably not too hard to imagine that Tamra is not a guitar player. Her perfect nails are a dead give away, so I thought the criticism was somewhat foolish and I decided to play around with that concept. In this shot I had Tamra positioned like she was playing the guitar but instead of trying to give me a believable look I asked her to hold her hands like she was told to keep her hands off. She gave me this great face and I had the shot I was looking for. This was clearly for fun and hopefully Richard will show it to some of his critics. I do not think you will see it on the newstand anytime soon.

Thank you for reading all of these posts about this shoot and any comments you have are welcomed.

Monday, July 14, 2008

goodsell amplifiers #5

This shot of Richard and Tamra is one of my favorites. I really enjoy the moment that they are having. To me it appears so genuine and it was. Richard is a high energy person and he sat down on the couch and started playing and talking with Tamra. It was so easy for him to get her laughing and being relaxed. His interaction also made my job very easy as well. I was just an observer with a camera that had to catch the right moment.

We shot this first and considering the relaxed atmosphere it set a very good tone for the day. We shot for a while and took a break. During the break we downloaded the shots to our computer and looked at them. We identified this shot right away as one that had real good potential and Richard agreed. One shot down so easily gave me a huge confidence boost.

As for the process, we set this shot up, shot it, reviewed it on computer and determined if we needed to reshoot. This is the way I like to work, but unfortunately it was the last time we did a well thought out review. Time did not allow and I could have done a better job with respect to time and will do so next time.

So, what is this shot going to be used for? Richard is using this as a lifestyle shot. The shot has all the components he was looking for...the amp, the guitar, the guy who fits the demographic, and the hot girl hanging on every cord. I can't wait to see this in print. Thanks for looking.

Friday, July 11, 2008

goodsell amplifiers #4

As I mentioned before this is the biggest shoot that I have done and one thing I learned in the process is surrounding yourself with excellent people is a key to success. No bigger example of this is the assistance I had from Craig Tanner. He agreed to assist me and I would not have been achieve half of the shots without his help. I have to admit it was a bit strange being assisted by your instructor, but it didn't phase him so I tried not to let it get to me. Craig handled all of the set up details. We would talk about it, I would get his suggestions, then he would set it up. This allowed me to talk with Richard and the girls about what we were doing next and what I was looking for. Like I said, Craig was tremendous and it didn't stop at the end of the day. His encouragement continues and I am grateful.

A good hair and makeup person can make a huge difference as well. I hired Nancy Hancock ( to take care of the girls hair and makeup. She was a great addition to our team. This shot of Tamra helps demonstrate her talent. The girls looked beautiful when they walked in but Nancy transformed them into Goodsell Girls and they looked stunning. Good hair and makeup takes time and this is something I need to prepare for when working in these situations. We started the girls getting ready when we got to the studio and we ended up waiting for them to get done which hurt our ability to get all the shots we wanted. I should have had the girls get with Nancy earlier so they were ready to go when we got to the studio. Considering that minor issue, this was money well spent and I look forward to working with Nancy again.

With respect to this shot, Tamra did not like it all that much. She liked it somewhat better in this toned version, but the color version did nothing for her. Richard and I found it a personal favorite of ours. Too bad I forgot the amp in this one.