Tag Archives: portrait photography

Phuong – Tattoos, Piercings and a Mohawk – Bad Ass Portrait

I’ve always admired the works of Keith Selle and other photographers who create a lot of images with models who are, for lack of a better word, “bad assess”. These photographers are able to capture the intensity of the tattoos as well as the beauty of model. Being mostly a corporate and headshot photographer, I rarely get the chance to photograph models with badass tattoos and piercings. Unless Mike Tyson wants a headshot, my chances of photographing someone with an awesome tattoo is very slim.

As I troll Facebook one day, I came across a set of pictures from my news feed and what do you know, it’s a set of pictures of some tatted up girl that I just happen to know. Her tats and piercings were so unique that I went ahead and contacted her to do a shoot. Long story short, we met up in Fremont at my friend’s awesome studio, The Candy Factory Studio, and due to some time constraints, we literally only had about 15min to actually shoot. My awesome MUA/Hairstylist friend, Jessica Do, did her hair and some of her make up. The shoot was, in my opinion, a success. I cannot wait to work with her again in future projects.

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Strobist Info:

  • F/6, 1/160, 5d mk2
  • Alien Bee 86′ PLM on camera right
  • Softbox on far camera left
  • Both had Ab800 on it at 1/4 power

 

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Floral Headdress – Beauty Portraits

I do my fair share of wedding photograhy under a different company name (Nocturnalz Photography),  and I’ve been blessed to befriend several talented florists whose constant creativity has pushed my photography to the next level. One florist approached me after a wedding session with an idea to do a “chiquita banana” inspired photoshoot but instead of using fruits as the headdress, she wanted to use flowers! She linked me to a slideshow from an America’s Next Top Model episode as a reference for our shoot.

I didn’t exactly have the budget ANTM has so I suggested inviting a few makeup artists (Audrey and Mimi) and doing more of a beauty portrait shoot with the flower headdresses she had in mind. Stobist information below.

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Strobist Info:

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Fashion Line – KMABELLEMINA Vintage.Glam.Unique

I met Mina back in 2008 when I was just starting to get serious with my photography. I planned a crazy photoshoot involving 3 MUAs, 7 models and help of a very skilled photographer, Mark Sebastien. Mina happened to be one of the 3 MUAs and she did an amazing job with the models. After several months of our initial collaboration, Mina contacted me to take pictures of her new fashion line which she co founded with her friend Kathy. From their grass roots humble beginnings to their super awesome fashion show happening this Friday 10/21, KMABELLEMINA continues to impress with their vintage glam style of clothing that is truly unique.

Below is a sample of their Summer 2011 line:

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Strobist info:

  • Beauty Dish right above the model on an AB800
  • Huge white reflector on the ground infront of the model
  • 5d MK2 1/125 power to let some of the afternoon ambient light come in

 

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Jessica – Graduation Portraits

A Master’s degree from Georgetown University… Good Job Jessica!

I consider Jessica to be one of my really good friends; she’s also one of the few people who can tell me to ‘stop it’, and I will actually listen! Jessica recently approached me and asked if I would be willing to take her graduation portraits; after much deliberation on what style we should use, we ended up going for a traditional set-up.

I should really just take pictures of the set-up so I don’t have to type so much, but for now, here’s a quick breakdown of what I used:

  • Beauty Dish on a AB 800 at 1/4 power on camera right.
  • AB 800 at 1/2 power pointed at the backdrop.
  • Reflector at the opposite side of the BD.

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I have always wanted to get a Master’s degree because I always have believed you could then put “Master” in front of your name, similar to getting a doctorage and being able to use “Doctor” in one’s signature… but alas, this is not the case. Either ‘Master Moses Sison’, or ‘Moses Sison, Master’ would be a pretty good salutation, right? *sigh*

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Lynn – San Francisco Baker Beach

Nature vs. Nurture… do people learn how to pose in-front of the camera or are they just born knowing how to pose? I am no anthropologist but a recent portrait session has me leaning towards “born with it”.

Accountant during the weekday and awesome lifestyle model during the weekend. Lynn was very professional and easy to work with. She had suggestions on location, clothing and poses. The portrait session went smoothly and we would have kept going but it started to rain in Baker Beach.

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Nerdy Photography note… I actually had problems uploading this in WordPress because the color profile I initially used was ProFoto RGB. Apparently ProFoto RGB isn’t supported by WordPress and it completely messed it up. It darkened and desaturated the pictures making her look like a corpse. I ended up changing my work flow because of this and I’ll be using sRGB as my color profile from now on.

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Jill Greenberg Style Lighting

One of my favorite photographers is Jill Greenberg. I’ve always been fascinated with her “Babies Crying” headshot / portrait project. I wanted to recreate something very similar but I didn’t really have any babies lying round to shoot let alone make cry so I had to improvise.  I asked my girlfriend and her friend to model for me one Sunday afternoon and below are the pictures we ended up creating.

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I actually used a lighting break down illustrated in one of  David Hobby’s blog entry but I replaced the ring light with a Lastolite Trigrip for fill. I actually won that reflector at the Flash Bus Tour in San Jose. I am probably going to use this headshot / portrait lighting when I shoot a couple of execs up in San Fransisco this weekend.

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