Film Flashback Friday – Cross Processed Dandelion

Dandelion flower Cross Processed Slide Film

Dandelion Cross-processed Slide Film

This yellow fellow was photographed with slide film for a color photography class study in cross processing. As with so much of my film photography, it sat in boxes & binders… until now.

Between the bokeh of a very unfocused background and the colors of the alternative film processing I ended up with an almost watercolor paint blur of shades behind the flower.

Next time you fire up Instagram, know the odd filters packed in the app have… (dandelion pun!) roots… in old-fashioned film photography.

Cross process supplies

 

Dance Performance Photography – Caught at LangLab

Caught dance performance photography

Reiterated confession: I’m a live performance & visual media junkie.

The anticipation, nervous energy before the stage comes to life, and one-shot no retakes atmosphere gets my creativity charged up. I absolutely love the countdown to go time. Troubleshooting in a pinch to make it work and look flawless. Fast paced action all around! (These all translate just fine to wedding photography moments too… but that’s another post.)

Caught performance at LangLab December 2010

Earlier this month I joined the production of Caught – a senior thesis turned full out dance production by Hannabeth Fischer. A brief excerpt from the show’s event page goes like this:

Artistically acclaimed “mesmerizing”, “enthralling”, and “beautiful the whole way through,” Caught is up for it’s second run in South Bend, IN. Choreography and film: Hannahbeth Fischer. After a highly successful debut at Saint Mary’s College in November, Caught has grown. Adding two musicians to the original sound artist, Patrick Quigley, the Analecta trio is complete. Analecta is a group of rising local musicians: indie, progressive, classical. http://www.myspace.com/analectaband

Experience a cross-platform performance with digital film and dance, playing on the borders of Dance Theater. Live sound engulfs the entire audience, the entire building. This performance, while beautiful on camera, cannot be experienced anywhere but live. Fischer’s statements about movement, duality, tension, architecture, desire, and interaction permeate the multiple channels.

Audience members should look forward to an exciting new space at LangLab. The truly unique space, conducive to incubation and artist musings, will shock many that it exists in South Bend.

Fischer shot some of the film for the projection in the space, adding a unique parallelism to this run of the piece. This is LangLab’s first full length dance performance. Neither South Bend nor LL have experienced a full kinesphere performance such as Caught, and should make it out to LangLab on December 10. Fischer and collaborators welcome conversation in the post-show hang time.

Aside from the usual available light performance photography I also worked with a great crew to provide video and multitrack audio recording for the performance portfolio DVD project. This was a first to go a huge step past mics-mixer-camera to allow for precise audio postproduction mixing of the single-take recording. Translation: geeking out.

Caught LangLab Dance Photography

Shots made with Nikon D700 and Nikkor 85mm f/1.8 lens in existing light / video projection.

Technical challenges outside of the recording side included adapting a theatrical stage performance at Saint Mary’s College to the LangLab warehouse art venue (very cool feel!). Full theatrical lighting and dimming control was simplified to fit the intimate space. I do enjoy a good brainstorm and improvisation!

Congrats Hannabeth and the cast of Caught on a wonderful 2nd performance! Glad to have been part of it!

 

UPDATE! Jan 2011 – Check out the LIVE recording album the band made from the audio tracks from the show.

Trash the Dress – Prom Edition

Senior Portraits prom dress forest fallen tree

While throwing around ideas with Tabatha for her outdoorsy Senior Session it was quickly apparent she was up for something a bit different. Once we got talking, I mentioned the Trash the Dress shoots I had shot in summers past. Creation, more than destruction – getting a new look by not being afraid to take a bridal gown somewhere that would mess it up, muddy it down, or get it wet. It instantly struck up an idea –

Enter a new twist on the bridal themed TTD shoots – Trash the Prom Dress.

While I hoped for a bit more sunlight after the first set out on a tree over a pond, I have to say I loved the addition of the storm clouds that started to move in for a good weekend of downpours.

Always great to work with creative subjects not afraid to go out on a limb -or fallen tree trunk- to try a new idea for a new look.

The more ideas and involvement you give me the more the creative energy gets going to make your photos that much more uniquely yours. Go ahead, drop me a line and fire away to see what I can do for you!

Nikon service saves the shoot!

I am floored. So was my favorite lens.

During a shoot in an old theater’s projector booth, I accidentally pulled a lens of a table when my camera strap caught it. While in a moment of inspiration, I changed lenses and grabbed my D300 off the table after arranging lighting and props. The camera decided to bring a friend with it, and my 50mm lens soon followed. The model, tangled in old film footage from the Lion King, Spawn and an unknown scifi movie saw the horror on my face as I tried to stop the lens with my foot, hacky-sack style. Swing and a miss. Severe ouch.

The glass was fine but the focus and aperture would barely move. We finished the shoot with the Nikon 17-55mm f/2.8G
lens, the workhorse of my gear, and I was seriously unhappy at my klutz move. I have backup cameras AND lenses plus insurance for a very good reason!

This is, by far, my favorite focal length on the 35mm / DSLR format, the Nikon 50mm f/1.4D AF Lens

I sent it to Nikon that following Monday, got a repair statement and price within the week, and approved it over the weekend. Pretty good speed to get it ready to repair within a week of the drop.

It showed up at my door before 4pm today – Friday. Hokey smokes!

090411_state_ttd_050

Thank YOU, Nikon repair service! I was fully content to shoot the 50mm f/1.8 this weekend… but you guys put the pedal to the metal to get this one done in a jiffy!

Check out how the photos turned out – lots more in the Trash the Dress Gallery

Enjoy the weekend! It’s stright up summer weather today in South Bend!

Photo Lessons by Joe McNally

I took a break from designing and sketching ideas for this weekend’s event setup to check the web feeds. Had a good laugh when I came across this napkin art. I’ve had some pretty cool photography instructors, mentors and inspirations. Still nobody illustrates his or her work as simply and geek friendly as the famous Joe McNally. What do these scribbles equate to for a photo?

Joe McNally photo school

Check out his workshop post HERE

Instead of “light modifiers” I will probably start to refer to our lighting kit as the photon force field.

Keep the creativity cookin!

Seeing Something Invisible

If you’ve looked at a photography magazine or seen any photo-centric websites or forums you know there’s been a tidal wave of new digital SLR cameras flooding the lineup of already pretty awesome cameras out there. Newer, faster, shinier, a couple extra megapixels… it’s crazy how quickly new cameras are being introduced!

This summer it was time for us to retire the second Nikon DSLR that helped start our business. I bought the Nikon D70s it back when it was introduced in 2005 and it has helped to photograph over 70 weddings since then, not including tons of engagement portrait and senior shoots. Hokey smokes I’m exhausted just counting up all the shoots since 2005!

The improved controls, response speed, and feel of the D200 and D300 had me hooked, but I didn’t want to try and sell a very used D70s when I could instead use it to see invisible light for a new take on some interesting photographic art.

Walnut Tree in Infrared

Southside Welcome in Infrared

For all the “how’d they do that” check out the conversion and technique at LifePixel.com