I’ve recently had the pleasure to take photos for a new website called Notes of the South, a book publisher of Southern genealogy and history. They specialize in writings about smaller overlooked historic communities but also have several other interesting titles and resources for sale on their site geared toward researchers, enthusiasts, and family historians.
In exchange for working together and producing their image content, many of the portrait photos from here are now displayed on a “partner” page of unaffiliated businesses bringing the images to a wider audience. Many thanks to them. For those working at or just interested in genealogy and history take a few minutes to check out their website at www.notesofthesouth.com. And forward the link to others who may be, too.
Here is a sample photo of mine–my goal to convey passing of time and history–that was used for their content:
School is winding down and senior portrait season is winding up, and I want to highlight a few sample photos from a recent session with a lovely young lady who is graduating.
There are certain milestones in life that deserve commemorating and high school graduation is certainly one of them. That’s why I enjoy working with families during these moments and getting to take part in a small way to help preserve those fun memories with keepsake photographs.
What a fun day we had getting these shots and a proud moment for me. Congratulations to this and all of the other graduates this year; you’ve got much to look forward to!
Here’s a fun Goth inspired photo shoot with a model from South Carolina.
I wanted to combine her look with gritty urban decay, so we shot at an old warehouse and peach shed both along a railroad. Notice the texture of the different surfaces and how it contrasts with her porcelain skin.
I enjoy utilizing juxtaposition to create levels of interest–smooth/rough, delicate/strong, beauty/decay. There are a thousand combinations that could be included in photography.
All images copyright Notes Of Light~Photography, 2016.
Enjoyed working with model/actor Michael Franji this past week. We shot for about an hour in an urban park setting, which allowed us to get a variety of looks. Michael was easy-going and confident, so we were able to work quickly getting these shots.
The black & white at the top of this page was the last shot of the day. He posed on an overlook while I stood below in the park and photographed him with the high-rise in the background. I wanted to use the building’s edge as multiple leading lines to the subject. The unusual angle helps make this shot interesting, and while the color image was good I like the contrast of the black & white best.
Water features also are great for punching up a portrait. Here, I posed Michael by a pond and took the photo while balancing on the same rock wall. With the mostly green/yellow color tone, the blue sweater/black jeans really pop, bringing the subject into the foreground.
Experimentation is a great way to learn to use background elements. Always accentuate, rather than distract from the model.
All images copyright Notes Of Light~Photography, 2016.
Many people believe that to capture the best natural light photographs you need a lot of bright sunshine. But most photographers will tell you to be careful with strong overhead sunshine and to take advantage of all kinds of weather to achieve a wide variety of quality shots. These 3 photographs, from a photo session this week, were made during a morning that saw more mist than not.
I booked a fashion photo shoot with an actress and model, Allison Cain, here in Atlanta and we met at our outdoor location, but because of the weather decided to move to a nearby, more suitable spot. Photographers have to be flexible with things that come up, and so I try to maintain a positive vibe with everyone I work with.
Allison, who was a treat to work with–a real pro, styled a couple of unique handmade peasant dresses for the shoot. Although we originally went for a modern hippie look, because of the new location and an added accessory, the look changed in ways that were unexpected but probably better than originally anticipated.
The cranberries, when added to the look of the white dress and the woodsy location, lent those photos a mythological feel–maybe with an air of modern wood nymph. While the blue and green peasant dress paired with the grain mill setting made Allison seem transported from the mid-1800’s. Her portrait above could be a book cover or movie poster from a period piece.
Anyway, change is good and forces you to be creative. Even when change is small things work out in surprising ways. We got so many good shots, I’ll have to add more in a later post. Many thanks to Allison for a great time shooting fashion together. Cheers!
All photographs copyright Notes Of Light~Photography, 2016
My most recent photo session was with Emmaline, an Australian singer and model. When I conceived the idea of a nighttime shoot in front of a street-full of Christmas lights, I wanted to collaborate with the right model. I always try to match each person I photograph with a specific idea for their shoot.
Emmaline was up for the idea and we talked a bit about wardrobe. After arriving on time, which photographers always appreciate, she rocked this beautiful, white empire-waist dress. I love how the white gives a natural high contrast to the darkness of the night.
I knew the cascade of blue lights in the backdrop would photograph well with her eyes, but the bubblegum-pink lip gloss was a bonus, and added just the right small splash of opposite color to the shots.
Although it was chilly, Emmaline didn’t complain, but kept her good nature. I had a great time working with her. She had just the right balance being laid-back and professional. I look forward to next time.
All photographs copyright Notes Of Light~Photography, 2015
Congratulations are in order for this lovely couple on their 5oth wedding anniversary. They celebrated by having a portrait session to mark the occasion.
Because their anniversary falls close to Christmas, they also used their favorite shot on a Christmas card to send to family and friends.
As I worked with them, I could see why they made it to 50. They were very sweet with each other and showed each other respect and patience. It was a real joy to be a part of their portrait celebration.
All photography copyright Notes Of Light~Photography, 2015
I had a great time working with this local Gwinnett student on her senior portraits. She was friendly, relaxed, and ready to start shooting at our appointment first thing in the morning. One of the goals for a photographer is to catch the personality of the subject in their work, but that often depends on the subject. No problem here, she did great.
Her teal dress complimented her perfectly and really gave the images an added pop. We decided on a scenic location where a barn and wildflowers would provide the photographs an interesting backdrop without being distracting.
As a double athlete at her school, she wanted some of the photos to display her love of sports. I love to tailor photography towards the subjects’ interests and in this photo she got to show off her softball skills.
Photographing high school seniors is memorable because you’re catching them at a significant and special time of their lives filled with promise. It’s a bright future that she has to look forward to after high school!
All photos copyright Notes Of Light~Photography, 2015.
These are random shots representing two other aspects of photography, besides portraiture styles, that I enjoy: architecture and nature. The church above is Lovely Lane Chapel at Epworth By The Sea, St. Simons Island, Georgia. A charming old building from the 1880’s, in a charming location, it had to be photographed. Couldn’t resist.
Also on St. Simons is this grand old cedar tree overlooking the water, gnarled and twisted from the constant beach breezes. I took several photos from different angles trying to decide on its “best” side of interesting textures in the light and shadow. Only later did I decide to convert it to black and white.
Just steps away, I walked by this cluster of mushrooms sprouting in the damp grass. I photographed this quirky little fungus by getting down beside it right at eye level. The canopy of the cedar tree, from the previous picture, makes a splendid backdrop for this stark white mushroom.
Several folks walked by and chuckled at the sight of me stretched out in the wet grass. But I was vindicated by another photographer who stopped, nodded approvingly, and told me where to find some more of these interesting and short models to shoot.
All photos copyright Notes Of Light~Photography, 2015
Every once and a while I take a photograph from one of my portrait photo sessions and spend some time doing extra post-production work to achieve a special effect. This work can take a few minutes or it can take several hours. These enhanced photos are all generally for my own fun with no real intent, but I thought I’d share a few from over the past several months.
While these types of pictures can look inspired, usually a good deal of experimentation and rough drafts precede the finished product. For each of these, there might have been ten attempts to get the final version.
But, it’s all about having fun, being creative, and working it until you get a product that you enjoy. Since the advent of digital photography this type of post-production has become more and more popular; the spectrum of image manipulation and relative ease at which its accomplished can’t be matched.
I tried to choose four photos that I produced that have very different effects. I know readers will have their own great opinions–let me know in the comments which of these you like!
All images copyright Notes Of Light~Photography 2014-2015