Saturday, March 28, 2009

Monday, March 23, 2009

Recent Work

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Samplings of Summer

This shot is from an assignment the other day about the arrival of the carnival at a local mall. Growing up in the Midwest, most people don't even mutter the word carnival until at least the beginning of May. You can imagine how much of a surprise it was to learn that in California most traveling carnival shows have been going at full speed since mid January. Just like that, summertime is almost upon us here in California.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Steelheading the North Umpqua Part I

After a pain-stakingly long hiatus from fishing due to my new job in the Bay Area, I was finally able to get out of town last weekend for a two day steelheading mission to the North Umpqua river in southern Oregon. I met up with my good buddy Ryan Peterson, of The Fly Shop and his long time friend Dan from Colorado late Friday evening in Redding. We made our final gear checks, loaded up Ryan's old Land Crusier and and hit the road for the five hour journey into steelhead country.

Steelheading the North Umpqua Part II

Friday, March 6, 2009

Banking on the Bottle

Every once in a while at my job, an assignment comes up where all the elements fall into place and I get to make a really creative portrait. Such was the case with this photograph. This was for a story on 17-year-old Danielle Burmudez who was recently awarded membership to the National Society of High School Scholars. To earn such an award a student needs to not only have good grades but also to be involved with their school activities and community. Burmudez was on the swim team and also created her own non profit program with two school mates to raise money for the Foundation for African Medicine and Education. She collects plastic bottles and then cashes them in for money that is then sent off to children in need. Already she has raised almost $300 through bottle donation.

She showed me her mountainous collection of bottles in her garage. I think one of the elements that go into making a good picture is getting your subject to hop on board your idea. This can be achieved many different ways but mainly through your enthusiam, attitude and convincing arguement for its purpose. The quicker you can establish trust with your subject the better your photos will be.

So for this shot I saw the bagged, plastic bottles all bundled up nicely and told her that I wanted to bury her in them. Swimming in the success of her achievement. After promising to help her clean up she agreed and we got started. I think that really made all the difference. Here is another version of the picture showing how I lit the image. I had a strobe on the upper left side of the image balanced on stacked boxes about 4 ft tall and another strobe in the lower right corner illuminating her feet. The top strobe was bounced off the poster board at right to give a little fill light to the right side of her face. I was pleased with the results.

In Training

Well the weather here in Northern California is finally clearing up. We have had a ton of rain and it has forced a lot of my photo sessions indoors. Over the last week or so many of my assignments have revolved around individuals learning something new. The first two images were taken of a local grade school gym teacher who was gearing up for his first MMA fight. I spent some time out at a local wildlife refuge where I photographed docents in training for a biology tour. The winter sport seasons are winding down with the state basketball tournament happening this weekend. I look forward to changing things up. The basketball photo here is of these grade schoolers who went undefeated in their winter league season. The last two images are from a story on the increased use of cell phones in grade schools. It was crazy to witness all these little kids pouring out of school with a phone up to their ear talking with friends or calling for rides home. It was one of my first "old" moments where I remembered back when I was their age we used payphones and usually had to just hope the rides would come. So much has changed since that time. Crazy.