One of my photo habits is to photograph only parts of things. Seagull photos are pretty common as they are a common bird, so my thinking was to add a little mystery to the image by only including the legs of the bird. Now maybe the viewer will think, what is on top of those legs? I cropped the image to purposefully have a leading line end flush in the lower left corner too.
Nikkor AF ED 80-200mm F2.8D
- Inquire about fine art prints and commercial license usage for this St. Petersburg pelican photograph
At any given moment, you can find a brown pelican to photograph in downtown St. Petersburg, Florida. Chances are you already have numerous pelican photos in your archives. This can be said for any number of common subject matters. So how to make such a common subject stand out? One way is to use a more creative composition, like having the subject fill the frame corner to corner. Use the shape of the subject to fill the frame in the most complementary way. For the pelican, with it's long narrow head, going diagonal corner to corner allows for filling the frame with the subject. Also, going through the edges of the frame creates a very different impression than fitting everything inside (with any subject it also helps to have a good, clean, complementary background; in the above photo the dark water of Tampa Bay combined with the large aperture I chose creates a smooth, gray bokeh).
When you go out shooting next time look for a subject that you can frame corner to corner.
This morning I met long time DSLR Photography Lesson student Stacy in Crescent Lake Park, where I knew it was very likely we would be able to photograph a goose or two. I suggested she bring a blanket so that she could lie down comfortably on the grass in order to be able to get at eye level to the birds. I got down low myself for the shot above.
In this lesson I pointed out even more to Stacy that the meter gives just a suggestion, as to get a good exposure of the geese in the deep shade they were standing in, it was necessary to use settings that the meter thought would result in an overexposed shot. That was mostly due to the background being much brighter than the foreground. Also, I recommended that there is no need to change aperture to fix the exposure. The aperture should be set first (when shooting in manual mode) so to set the depth of field, and then the shutter speed should be set as needed to get the desired exposure.
At the edge of Tampa Bay in St. Petersburg Florida perched seemingly not so precariously on a narrow post I found this brown pelican relaxing. To human eyes, this does not look like perhaps the greatest and/or safest of resting spots, but pelicans obvioiusly think otherwise.
I will be working with new client Kevin on several photography projects. The first of which was this social media portrait session. Kevin wanted to have some good portraits of himself showing what he likes to do in his own home setting for social media and also for dating websites. I have been trying to find a way for years to reach people who use dating websites who are trying to find their dream matches with horrible cell phone mirror photos of themselves. If you are going to spend money on a dating website, and are serious about finding someone, then I think there is great value in having professional portraits of yourself made showing you having fun and doing things you like to do. You will definitely stand out from 99% of the other profiles on any dating website just by having high quality and most importantly flattering images of yourself.
Kevin wanted one shot of him looking more formal. It was his idea to have photographs of his children in the background. I liked the idea also. There was a challenge to overcome in not having any reflections from my speedlights in the photo frames on the wall, but after a few adjustments I was able to produce the glare free shot above.
This photograph shows Kevin by his pool table which tells the story of one of his hobbies. He is still the main subject of the photograph, but including the pool cue and edge of the table shows what Kevin likes to do for fun.
Kevin's house had a great kitchen which I thought should definitely be featured in one of his social media portraits. This shows him in an inviting activity where a person on a dating website might imagine they would like to visit sometime. In the right background of the shot is Kevin's new Italian ice machine! He can make his own sno-cones.
Next I will be photographing Kevin's GT-R. I am looking forward to it!
This morning I drove over to Belleair Bluffs (surprisingly little traffic) to photograph two chefs. Networking friend Allen who works in marketing referred this job to me, thank you! (if you need marketing, see his site) The chefs needed updated headshot style photos for new marketing materials, including a billboard! So if you are driving around Belleair Bluffs keep a lookout for these images!
I photographed them inside the restaurant itself, but all that was desired by the client was a final image on a clear background. To make it easy to cut them out of the shot I setup a white background. The white background in these images here was added in Photoshop. The client though can add any color or type of background as needed.
I have photographed with clients with glasses before, and have had some challenge getting know glare or reflection showing up. This time the challenge was a bit more than usual. I think I learned a tip for eliminating glare/reflection in glasses, have the subject look down slightly. That was how I was able to make the above photo of Chef Erwin with signature glasses on.
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After making a headshot for a client in my home photography studio, while I had all the lights setup, I tried to coerce Kiki into letting me make a photograph of her. She is very, very reluctant to do so for some reason being very resistant to the whole idea. So this time I put her favorite chair in frotn of a white background (though later digitally edited for a pure white background) and had her curl up into it in her usual manner. She spends a lot of time lying down like this staring out the sliding glass door beside my work desk.
She was actually facing into the living room and not out the window, her distant look is just her trying to avoid looking at me and into the lens!