Archive for the ‘Links’ Category
I could have continued, and done, you know, Raves for a Couple of Daves, or, These Daves are Faves, or…..well, you get the drift.
When I got into this business, my aims were pretty simple. I wanted to do some cool pictures, and make my pix decent enough to enjoy the respect of my peers. Pretty straightforward. I remember wangling a student credential to the 1976 Democratic National Convention in NYC, and getting in there in the limited way I could, with my Nikkormat and a couple of lenses. I was overawed, not by Carter-Mondale, or the convention itself (though Barbara Jordan was pretty cool) but by the shooters. These guys were pros. Big time. I didn’t know any of them of course, but I had heard of them. I couldn’t believe I was watching Wally McNamee and Danny Farrell work, for instance. Completely unflappable. Kept their eye in the damn camera while the whole world was crashing down and people were shouting and shoving and just in general gettin’ pretty wild eyed. (And this was not D3, auto focus, auto exposure, auto white balance, auto registration of your images with the Library of Congress, auto park the car and walk the dog territory. This was the days of the F, F2 if your paper was fancy, with lenses darker than Fanghorn Forest and focus rings so stiff you needed a crescent wrench to crank ‘em.) Still, they would just shoot, and nail it.
Now, fast forward 30 plus years, and I’ve gotten to know a whole bunch of great shooters, and call them friends. I wrote a paper about Jay Maisel in school, for instance, and now I call him friend. (He calls me a bunch of different stuff, which is cool with me.) It’s one of those gifts continuing to endeavor in this field gives you, along with the knee surgeries, the nights alone in places by the side of the highway, and the continuing angst over when the next good frame will come your way, and how the hell you gonna pay next month’s (make it this month’s) Amex. But that is for blogs tk.
[More after the jump]
The book has been pretty well received. When I first looked at its ratings climb on Amazon, I just figured it was my sisters, clicking away, running up their credit cards, helping out their baby bro.
But, the book kept climbing, and holding up a pretty high ranking, spiking all the way to #10 of all books on Amazon. That puts us up there with all the murder mysteries and romance novels!
I thought about it and figured the appeal must be the noir-ish, sweaty style in which I wrote it, thrown in with some good photo info. Think of mixing the Adorama catalog with a bodice ripper.
It was a dark and stormy night. Outside the windows of the cheap motel, the thunder rolled. Her heart was quaking. He had sparked her with a pepper, re-arranged her pixels, and she knew she would never forget it.
“Will you stay?” she asked, though she already knew the answer.
In the flashes of lightning, she could see his face was stern and resolute. “I can’t stay, babe. I told you when all this started I wasn’t a stick around kind of guy.” The lightning effect was augmented, of course, by the Pocket Wizard transceiver he had in his pocket, tripping an Elinchrom Ranger RX unit with a Free Lite head and a long throw reflector on a c-stand complete out in the parking lot. Inside the reflector pan was loosely taped a Rosco Cinegel quarter blue (Quarter CTB), to give the light a pale, cool feel, just like lightning.
“I know,” she replied. Her voice was steady but her quivering bosom gave lie to her words. “Will you come back?”
“Depends if there’s ever any news again in this lousy burg,” he said. “It would also help if you had a twin sister. But I guess that’s no go on both counts.”
He shouldered his cameras and stepped to the door. Framed by the lightning and the slashing rain, she could see he had a Nikon D3 with a 200-400mm AFS VR Zoom f/4G IF-ED. How she longed to touch it one last time!
He tossed her an Lexar 8gb UDMA 300x CF card, and on it was scrawled a note….”Thanks for the good times…”
When she looked up, he was gone.
Kidding of course….
[More after the jump]
A wall is just a wall. But it was intriguing enough to take a second, and even a third look at. Made a quick snap on aperture priority and got a picture, well, of a wall. Looked like a nice color palette but kind of like a coral reef below at about 40′ or so, the color was muted and bluish. (I was a big fan of Jacques Cousteau when I was a kid. Read all his books, and I always remember his early underwater flash photography, and his musings as to why all this magnificent color got stashed in a place where the eye couldn’t see it, except when you hit it with artificial light.)
So there’s the wall.
It’s a beautiful backdrop, for free, right there in front of you.
[More after the jump]
To all for such a gracious welcome to the blog world. I promise to try to keep it going, and stay lively, win, lose or draw. Just doing this is a big deal for me, and I gotta admit some stuff here. First, I ain’t the most organized or responsible person on the face of the planet. Also, I’m a big time day dreamer. (Some picture ideas come out of those day dreams, to be sure. I guess I’ve always wondered if I could get paid for day dreaming, you know, charge a client a half day research fee if you thought about their job in the shower, for instance. Hmmm.)
And, I suck at the computer. I’m getting better, but the idea of being real, real good at this machinery is probably one of those things that ain’t gonna happen to me, like playing center for the Knicks.
I’m learning, though, from a guy named… Brad. Brad is our first assistant both in the studio and in the field, our IT person, go to guy, all around organizer, and the one who calms me down when I start hitting the computer with a hammer and screaming, “Make the little pictures come out!!!!”
You might occasionally get a response from Brad to a post. He’s a good guy. He actually lives with us, us being me and my wife Annie. He has his own apartment downstairs, comes and goes as he pleases, and we never hear him when he’s down there cleaning D3 sensors and watching Office Space.
[Many more thanks after the jump]…
I’ve been doing these training videos on location light for my buddy Scott Kelby. They’ve been a ton of fun to do and, at first glance, I’m even mildly coherent. Click here to preview the lessons and site. If you can get past my visual appearance (hump, twitch in the left eye, constant drooling), there’s a fair amount of ground we cover about lighting both in the studio and on location, and using both large strobes and small, hot shoe flashes.
First one is up, and I take a look at light shaping tools from umbrellas (shoot through, reflected), to large and small softboxes, direction of light, methods of softening the light to achieve a good portrait look, to using a second strobe to provide fill and a bit of glamour. We chew through a bunch of stuff in the studio, some times being successful, and sometimes not, making adjustments, trying different stuff, even a quick ring light set, and then at the end of the day, real time, chasing the fading sunset, we do a seat of the pants strobe set on the beach with Jennifer Concepcion, a truly magnificent ballerina.