Insider shoots

Every so often I get assignments from insider Magazine, where I have to photograph what seems to be “random” local people for the 20?s or What I’m Into section of the weekly paper. What makes these shoots so fun and interesting is that you never really know what to expect when you show to the shoot and meet the subject for the first time. Here are a few shoots from the past month or so.

This first shot is of Haley Potter, of Finger Lakes Energy $mart Communities. The first thing to come to mind to incorporate something that says Go Green, is the CFL lightbulb. After a few tests, I set my studio lights to full power, to overpower the lightbulb we had plugged in and positioned near her face. I placed a green gel on the background light, and one softbox on camera left. The most interesting part of this shot is the reflection of the bulb in her bright bluish green eyes.

The next few shots are of actor Chris Tyler, who performed in The Producers. When arriving at the JCC Theatre, the stage was set, and there were many great places to shoot. But what caught my eye was this huge oval sitting in the middle of the seats, with a perfect hole in the center to place Chris. I had 3 speedlights with me, but wanted to capture more of a theatre feel for more effect. So I grabbed the extra 3 sitting in my car (thanks Mike Hanlon) to complete the semi circle of lights. I captured a few shots of my initial idea, although in print I realized he would be too small to be distinguishable. So I decided to come a bit closer, and use a wide angle to frame his whole body and move the lights into the shot.

The next few shots were taken from two separate shoots. I photographed Aaron Komenski aka DJ KoKo a few months back in my studio, and insider wanted me to photograph a shot of him with his brother Jason for a story about the two brothers and their DJ professions. Jason, aka DJ Kasper is a local radio DJ and KoKo lives in Las Vegas, but wouldn’t be home until the story was in print. To solve this problem, I took my favorite shot of KoKo’s previous shoot and photographed Kasper the same way but flipped, and inserted him into the photo as if they were both there at the same time. The final spread, designed by Sara Hickman turned out amazing.

This last shot is of Janelle Duda, a social worker and teacher at RIT. She really wanted to shoot at Highland Park, across the street from her house. But when I arrived, that idea quickly changed. She took me to the back of her house to meet her dog in the “dog room.” Here is where I found the setting that would be much more interesting than a park could ever be. We tried which seemed like forever to get the dog to settle down using treats and hiding food in his toys to get him in the right position with many failed attempts. Finally he calmed down, grabbed a piece of torn up couch, looked up at me, and I snapped away.