Photo Studio Challenge - Portrait of a Loved One

A couple of weeks ago the team of photographers, stylists and support staff that I work with kicked off a bi-weekly studio-wide photo challenge (images were posted here). Every two weeks we pick a theme and each person can shoot an image that relates to that theme. 

This week our theme was: A portrait of a loved one, without showing them in the image. So in other words, an object, person (other than the "subject" of course) or place that reminds you of that person. 

Here are the results!

Ashley Paulus

Product Stylist Ashley Paulus photographs her parents wedding rings with her iPhone and natural light. 

Bonnie Warrington -

Photographer Bonnie Warrington shot this still life with her DSLR ann Natural Light. These items represent her boyfriend Scott. 

Dani Alvarez

Product Stylist Dani Alvarez shot this still life of items representing her beloved dog Schmoopie

Daniel T Jester 

A Glenfield Model 60 just like the one my Grandpa took me to shoot when I was a child. 

Dave Uzzardi -

Dave Uzzardi's submission to the challenge, a subtle and somewhat abstract image where the subject slowly reveals itself to the viewer after some time. 

Emily Wilkerson

Product Stylist Emily Wilkerson shot this antique rocking chair that has been in her family for years. t's a reminder of her grandparents. 

Karen Utley -

Photographer Karen Utley shot this still life in remembrance of her mother

Karyl Alvarado

Studio Coordinator Karyl snapped this shot of a song her and her grandmother played together during their short meeting before her grandmother had to head back to the Philippines.

Kimmy Ann Snow

Product Stylist Kimmy Snow set up this shot of her Father In Law's dog tags and ashes. She never met the man, but he is an important part of her husband life, and feels a connection. 

Lindsay Barker

Product Stylist Lindsay Barker shot this still life installation that represents friend from across the country that she has made in her life. 

Vanessa Celotto -

Stylist Supervisor Van Celotto snapped this to represent the staff of the studio as her loved ones. Awwwwwww. 

Vivian Nguyen

Product Stylist Vivian Nguyen styled and shot this still life that represents her mother who lives in Seattle. 

As you can see, the turn out for this weeks challenge was BIG. It was so exciting to see how everyone interpreted the theme and what they submitted. Stay tuned for the next Studio Photo Challenge, where the theme is Food.

BTS Tuesday - Puma Men's Shoes

Sometimes you have to get creative when trying to be creative. That is to say, you have to look to the unlikely sometimes to find the right prop or surface or background for your image. 

Such was the case when shooting this image for Puma. 

The background for this shot is the concrete floor in the studio, and the platform for these shoes were our wardrobe racks. The colors worked and we had three available to make this sort of industrial looking runner. 

Wardrobe racks providing the platform for these shoes

Product stylist Ashley puts the finishing touch on this set up

The lighting set up for this shot ended up being a single light. Initially I felt like this would be a two light set up, with a small softbox aimed at the floor to the rear of the subject to keep the light from falling off and looking like an abyss, but that ended up being way too hard to manage. All we needed back there were a few reflecting boards to bounce light from my beauty dish back into the scene. Voila! A really nice one light shot. 

Slow Days = Light Tests

I work in a photo studio for a major retailer, and much like retail sales patterns, there are busy times and not so busy times. July third was one of those not so busy times. With a little bit of time to kill and lots of photo equipment on hand, having an impromptu fun photo shoot seemed like the thing to do. 

Our studio is not interesting. It's not attractive, and frankly it's downright ugly. I wanted to take an ugly generic hallway and turn it into something interesting. 

An ugly, generic hallway

I had originally wanted to shoot a specific person in the studio using this set up and location, but they weren't around when I finished setting up. Instead, a few of my coworkers decided to get in on the fun. 

Bonnie stands in to check my light, and then all hell broke loose

I think this probably qualifies as more interesting than the hallway. I could have incorporated more of the actual hallway in the photo, this really could have been shot in any open space. Or could it? The cool thing here is that this was shot with minimal equipment. The hallway wall itself is filling my key light and keeping those shadows in check. Two lights and thats it. Key light, rim light shown in frame and that's it. 

After Bonnie stood in for my subject so I could check my light, the rest of the studio staff wanted to get in on the action. 

Amanda - Copy Writer

Sophia - Copy Writer

Stylist Group Shot - Vanessa, Ashley, Vivian, Dani

There are more people, but you get the idea. Maybe in the future I will have a little more time to explore this space and see what else can be done.