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VOLO Magazine and Hollywood Glam

An image typifying the Hollywood glamour of the 1930's and 1940's

An image typifying the Hollywood glamour of the 1930's and 1940's

The world's premier art/nude magazine VOLO has published Hollywood Glam, a collaboration between model Tyler-Jane Lumsden (https://tylerjanelumsden.com/) and myslelf in their 50th Jubilee Issue - https://www.volodaily.com/product/volo-50-june-2017-issue-body-art-issue/

These images are an attemted replication of the Hollywood glamour of the 1930's and 1940's as typified by George Hurrell but using today's technologies. Unlike most portraiture photography, Hollywood glamour was typified with harsh lighting and this is achieved with studio strobes using bare light, snoots and gridded beauty dishes.

Vintage Photographic Processes

Above: Platinotype of Narrabeen Lagoon Below: L: Platinotype portrait  R: Wep plate collodion prortait (gothic inspired)

Above: Platinotype of Narrabeen Lagoon

Below: L: Platinotype portrait  R: Wep plate collodion prortait (gothic inspired)

The birth of photography is generally accepted as the public announcement of the daguerreotype process in January 1839 by Louis Daguerre to the French Academie des Sciences. The mid to late 1800's saw a number of photographic processes which exhibited great variations in their original form and also with later aging processes. With the advent of digital technologies it is possible to recreate the style of these vintage photos, though the purists who use the same procedures and similar cameras would disagree.

My favourite images are those using the wet plate collodion process with it's aging, and the platinotype process which was a variation of the ambrotype and tended not to exhibit aging characteristics.

Edgy Black and White

Edgy black and white triptych

Edgy black and white triptych

A triptych of edgy shots of a French model converted to black and white. Lighting used was 2 gridded beauty dishes to restrict light spillage and give a slightly harsher look and feel. The camera was tethered wirelessly to a laptop using the CamRanger system so images could be downloaded to the laptop, which was connected to a data projector so the image is projected onto a screen. This enables both photographer and model to change poses and lighting as required. 

Curve Creations Closet

Pinup fashion blogger @curvecreation

Pinup fashion blogger @curvecreation

curvecreation is a fashion blogger concentrating on the pinup style and pinup model Miss Osiria Rose. Her blog is Curve Creations Closet and is has the web site: http://curvecreationscloset.blogspot.com.au/ - and may be found on Instagram at @curvecreation. Here is a triptych of my first shoot for her blog taken at Wendy's Secret Garden at Lavender Bay.

Fashion Bloggers

First shoot with fashion blogger Shannae Percossi

First shoot with fashion blogger Shannae Percossi

I am shifting my focus to fashion bloggers in the hope of forming a long term partnership with up and coming bloggers who may be making money sometime in the near future. These images are from my first shoot with fashion blogger Shannae Percossi - fashionwithshannae. These may be shot in any location around Sydney, with or without off-camera flash as the situation dictates.

Queen Victoria Building

The Queen Victoria Building in Sydney's CBD is a camera friendly building

The Queen Victoria Building in Sydney's CBD is a camera friendly building

The Queen Victoria Building located near the Town Hall in Sydney's CBD is a Romanesque Revival building built between 1893 and 1896 and restored between 1984 and 1986 and refurbished again in 2008. Whenever I do a street fashion shoot around the Town Hall, I always do a set or two inside the QVB. This building has to be one of the most "camera/photographer friendly" buildings in Sydney, perhaps the only one.

1940's Hollywood Glamour

1940's Hollywood glamour image inspired by those of George Hurrell

1940's Hollywood glamour image inspired by those of George Hurrell

One of my recent shoots was themed on 1940's Hollywood glamour style that was made popular by George Hurrell. This involves 3 light sources. The main is at 45 degrees and up high. It is usually a snoot or similar to produce harsh light with no softening. The second light is diagonally opposite for a hair light. The third is to light the background, usually to produce a mottled effect.

The model's makeup is important - it needs to be very pale with ruby red lips. Eye shadow should not be too dark, and eyelash extensions used to be long.

 

The Nikon 135mm f/2 DC

Portrait taken with the Nikon 135mm f/2 DC lens

Portrait taken with the Nikon 135mm f/2 DC lens

Some call it the "King of Bokeh", others say it is the "the best portrait lens you never heard of". First released in 1990, the Nikon 135mm f/2 DC lens is one of two lenses I use for the majority of my portrait work (the other being the Nikon 85mm f/1.4G). Though being an old lens with optics that are nearly 26 years old, the lens is sharp as a tac and the defocus control or focus ring gives you the ability to control the "out of focus" areas within the image.

Conceptual Dance

A tych of 4 images from my "dance and motion" series.

A tych of 4 images from my "dance and motion" series.

As I mentioned in my first blog post, experimental and conceptual photography is another passion I have. One idea I followed through over several months to nail the concept and technique involved simple dance movements that emphasises motion and colour. How I achieved these images are described in the write up of my photography in Issue 2 of Creative Photography by Woodland Publishing. You will need to purchase that magzine to get the "How To" on these images.

Off-Camera Lighting Workshops

Studio headshots are one use for off-camera lighting.

Studio headshots are one use for off-camera lighting.

I sometimes give workshops on off-camera lighting. These are designed for other photographers and include topics such as light theory (including the inverse square law), ambient and flash lighting, studio and environmental shoots, lighting equipment and their uses, hard and soft light, lighting setups, applications or uses for off-camera lighting and much more. At the moment these workshops are held at Exposure Studios in Tuggerah. on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon.

Soft Focus Portraits

Soft focused achieved in PhotoShop using Gaussian Blur

Soft focused achieved in PhotoShop using Gaussian Blur

Many headshots and portraits are done with a soft focus to create an evocative mood. This is also used occasionally in fashion photography and also in adult or boudoir photography. The soft focus can be achieved in one of two way, either in camera by backing off on the focus a little, or in post processing with the use of Gaussian Blur and adjusting the opacity. The pose and composition need to be amenable to a soft focus, it will not work with all images.

Dance Photography

Triptych of dance jumps

Triptych of dance jumps

I have done a few shoots with dancers, both for conceptual/experimental images and portfolio sets that include jumps. The latter have been with very experienced dancers and is an area I really enjoy. I must admit, I prefer the results from studio shoots than location shoots, especially for jumps and floor shots - the main reason being the clean and uncluttered background forces the emphasis to be on the dancer. I guess this reflects my approach to portrait photography anyway, a simplistic background with the subject being the mode.

Hot Rods and Muscle Cars

Car and bike enthusiasts often like great photos and prints of the results of their many hours of restoring old and antique cars and motor bikes. Why go cheap on the photos and prints considering the money and time invested in your restored hot rod or muscle car. Or you may want enticing images for advertising for various functions, or more simply to show off your endeavours to it's best advantage in your club magazine. Photos are a great way to brag.

 

HotRods.jpg

Street Fashion

Fashion shoot in Sydney's CBD

When doing location shoots I normally use a number of off-camera flashes in umbrella, but when shooting in crowded areas or where you need to travel by public transport it is impractical to bring all the lighting equipment. Fashion shoots in Sydney's CBD is one example where the only gear used is the camera and a few lenses. You are shooting only with ambient light. The trick is to ensure the lighting is acceptable and it needs to highlight the outfits and accessories.

The Model/Photographer Relationship

Model: Lara Cinnibar

The relationship between the model and the photographer is paramount. The chemistry between model and photographer can lift the quality of both to greater heights, and conversely a lack of any positive relationship will result in mediocre images. The models that I have shot a number of times are the ones where we have clicked, we are comfortable with each other, the shoots have been fun and the results are in the images we obtain.

VOLO Daily and Archives

Triptych of images from sets published/to be published in VOLO Daily

Triptych of images from sets published/to be published in VOLO Daily

I've had one set published in VOLO magazine's VOLO Daily in their Archives section, and another 2 sets will soon be published. The set already published is "At the Falls" with Kimberley Bianca. One that will soon be published is "Not a Roman Sarcophagi" with Kimberley Bianca and Seraphiim. Another that has been accepted for publication is "Girl in Light with Blinds" with Hayley-Lee". The associated image is a triptych from these 3 sets.

Pinup Doll Australia 2016

Miss Kitty Summers: an entrant in Pinup Doll Australia 2016

Miss Kitty Summers: an entrant in Pinup Doll Australia 2016

I have been asked by one of the organisers of Pinup Doll Australia 2016 if I would like to be the photographer for this years event in October. To quote from their web site: "Pinup Doll Australia is a national pinup competition that was created in order to be accessible to any pinup girl. It is run by pinups, for pinups." Of course I have accepted this great honour.

The event will be held along with Chromefest at The Entrance on Saturday 22nd and Sunday 23rd October - see http://pinupdollaustralia.weebly.com/events.html for event details.

 

Creative Photography

I have two main interests in photography. One is portraitures and portraits, both in studio and on location. The second is experimental and creative photography where I apply new techniques or experiment. I was asked by Woodland Publishing if I could write a profile of my photography for an issue of their magazine Creative Photography. My article was centred on the notions that photography is a continual learning experience, and one should think outside of the square. The first sentence of my article really sums up what it is about: "Bob Dylan once said that if you are always in a state of becoming you will be okay."