Review Session 01
Hello, everyone. Thank you so much for joining us. We'll just wait another minute or two and let everyone join this private feedback session with Theron. Awesome. How's the weather today in Montana?
Hi Mattie, man, it's amazing today, blue skies. It's gonna be like 70, I don't know, that is in Celsius, sorry, Joel.
It's nice, that's all good. That's all good.
Can you convert it for us? Do you know what's 70 degrees? That's like no jacket needed.
Celsius too Fahrenheit.
Oh, you're Googling it.
What is that?
Oh, that's beautiful, 21, I think that's almost the perfect temperature.
Are there people here?
Yeah, in the right you can see the attendees. So we got--
They can see me?
They can see us right now. (laughing)
Nice. I just feel
Like I'm just talking to you.
Yeah, well soon we can like, we're gonna like go through the five or six people right now that we've selected for the first session of two private feedback sessions with Th...
eron Hamford. And at those moments, if we're going through your work, we'll have the ability to like kind of beam you in and you can ask some questions or have a little bit of a conversation with Theron as well. So thank you so much for being here with us and Theron, we're very grateful that you have gotten Theron's workshop and that you've taken the assignment seriously and awesome, we're we're stoked to be here, and Theron, thank you for your time.
Yeah, for sure. I need to get some more water, Joel, sorry.
No problem, grab some water. That couch looks so comfortable.
What? Getting back
Awesome, fantastic. So let's see, okay, yeah, if we wanna start, you know, in that order, selected list.
Oh, I'm looking for treats, looking for treats. Yeah, for sure.
A brief, introduce yourself and the work and the assignment and go ahead.
Yeah, yeah. So like Joel said, thank you so much for getting my workshop. My background is I have a BA in photography and computer science and then I was, you know, crazy, and I went and got my MFA in photo from the Savannah College Barton Design. And then from there I went and was a photo assistant for many years in a commercial production fashion situation. And then I did that for about three years and then from there I broke off and just went fully freelance and pursued essentially some like really passionate personal projects and that kind of launched my career to being a freelance photographer. So that's kind of like why this workshop was focused on the personal project to hone your style and your voice. And when you can create that body of work, that's how you start landing commercial work. Or even if you're not interested in landing commercial work, that's how you grow as an image maker. So that's just a quick, very high level overview of myself, at least with photography. So since 2009, I've been freelance.
Awesome. Awesome, thank you Theron. And just so, the submissions are kind of, the assignment is about like you're pretending to be the clients, right?
It's footwear focused.
On the model plus lifestyle you want tight and some pullbacks was the kind of the assignment?
Yeah, yeah. So yeah, like one of the most helpful like parts about being in school was like that situation where you get to present your work to the class, the professor put it on a wall, talk about it, learn what others are interpreting from your work, what's strong about the work, what's not strong about the work and that's how you grow as an image maker. So even to this day, almost every photo I've posted on Instagram, on my main feed, which is kind of like, you could think of it as like a hero place like those are like, they're kind of like, you know, greatest images that I've taken, not always, you know, like sometimes it's nice not to take it so seriously, but those are like images that I think are strong as photographs, even when I'm posting those, I still have a group of photography friends that I'm checking in with them on the work, on composition, color, content, and just getting their feedback. So creating that community where you're sharing images amongst yourselves, that's how you grow. And trust me, there are moments where like I work so hard on an image and in my gut I know it's just not clicking and it's not right and I just want affirmation from another person, even though like, I don't, they need to tell me the truth, which is like, you need to, this is not resolved, you need to go shoot more. So I even still have that gut check where it's like, I loved an image, I wanted it work so bad and it's not clicking yet. And that's when feedback from your community is so important. So I don't, my whole idea over this was, you know, I like talking about photography, I like looking at photography and it was just an opportunity to give some feedback.
Fantastic. Then let's get started.
You wanna start with Angeline?
Yeah, for sure. Hey, when I share my screen, does my video go away? Is it just my screen then?
Yeah, do you want me to share this? I could potentially share the screen too if you wanted to be talking and you can tell me to go right or left, but it might be easier for the time being, if you cycle through those images yourself.
Okay, okay. Okay, lemme do that then. I just didn't know if I concurrently got video. So am I still on video now? Can people still see me talking? I mean, I'm not.
Yeah, we can still see you talking.
Okay, that's what I was curious about. Okay, cool. Yeah, so whose work is this? Where's the file name?
This is Angelina and we can allow her to talk if you want to talk a bit about the images first and then we can bring her in to talk too.
Oh, I mean, first of all, if you don't want to get up here and be on video, you don't have to.
There's an option just to be speaking, so she just has to be speaking.
Okay, yeah. Well, we should get her on video or audio, whichever one you want.
She's like, "No video." That's totally, I'm teasing, it's totally fine. Cool.
Angeline, are you there?
Yes, I'm here.
Hey Angeline, just gimme a quick intro into who you are. You know, the elevator pitch, you know, where you live, and what you're up to.
My name's Angeline Ake and I live in Bend, Oregon.
And so I live in a very naturally beautiful place That's easy to take photos outside.
I just shoot for a hobby, but I've been a long time follower of yours. And so I was really excited to have an opportunity to take a workshop directly from you.
Yeah, Yeah. Thank you so much. I love Bend, I've been many times. There's a great mechanic there, Fit Garage, if your car ever breaks down.
Yeah, I know them actually.
Nice. So this is, you kind of did a shoot for Red Wing, so let's just scroll through your images and I'm probably gonna go too far into somebody else's work, but we can go back. So is this Bend or nearby?
Nearby at Smith Rock in Terabon.
Okay, cool. Yeah. And I think that that's somebody else's work. Okay. Okay, first of all, I mean, let me just, so like my nature, it's like really, it's like easy for me to fall into a place with pointing out things that are wrong, and that's probably because I was raised by, you know, I don't know, baby boomers? And that's just the place that I came from. So I'm saying that because it's my natural space to go, but I wanna be a little bit more intentional to say things about the work that I love, but we also have to hear things that are not great, 'cause that's how we grow. And man, this is a super great image, right? I mean, the lighting is amazing around her hair, it's just about perfect, you know? Like that's just fantastic. And this, this is an image, if I was an art director for Red Wing or, you know, whatever boot company over here, I don't know if you can see my mouse, can you see my mouse moving? Obviously I don't do Zoom conference calls very often. This would just be a phenomenal place for copy. You know, this is just really thoughtful. And that's the thing when you're shooting for clients who often want to, especially now with cameras being 20 megapixels, 40, 50, 60 megapixels, like you do have a lot of room to crop in. So I think it's almost always better these days to shoot a little bit wider. And most often it's better just to take a step back versus just zooming out. So what lens do you normally shoot with?
I shoot with a, so the camera I have is like a Q2, and so it's a fixed lens.
It's widest setting is 28 and then you can crop it in from there.
Oh, okay, like crop it in on the sensor. So I think that's like a well phenomenal camera, besides just being a Leica. But like, what's amazing about that camera is like, I so recommend people shooting with fixed lens prime lenses, because what happens when you get a zoom lens 24 to 70, you have this tendency to want to change how photographs feel by zooming in closer or zooming out. But you know, going from 70 millimeters to 24 millimeters, not only, it doesn't merely just get you closer to the image, it changes the interpretation and the feel of the photograph. So the point being is like, I think it's a really amazing tool that you have, that fixed lens camera of a prime lens because now the only way for you to change the composition of an image is to get closer, to move further away. So anyways, I think it's a great choice. But if you do have a zoom lens, if you have a 24 to 70 anybody listening, I think the way to mentally to use that lens is just pretend like you have five separate lenses, all in one. Like never like just zoom in to get closer, that's like the wrong way to use a camera. You want to set it on 50, you're like, now I only have a 50, now let me change my distance to the subject. So, you know, back to this image, like, love the negative space, this is a great area for copy, the lighting is phenomenal, I think this is a banger image. So super nice job with this. And you know, her pose is obviously, obviously this is like a staged photograph, but it's starting to lean towards something that feels natural and carefree. And that's kind of like the main charge of commercial lifestyle photography, it's like, how can you in a set amount of time, you have a two day shoot one day shoot, how can you make natural feeling images that are essentially fabricated? And that's kind of like the goal and the charge of the photographer to do that. And this image right here that you shot is totally leaning on that. And you know, if I was an art director, I would wanna see other selects around it, but I think that's a great image. So let's go back and look at some of your other stuff. Man, you know, same thing with here, like the only thing that I'm a little bit nervous about with this one is like we're getting a little bit close to the bottom of the frame, 'cause like this image tells me a little bit more story of the jacket, like if this was a Levi Straus ad, it would be perfect because my eye immediately hits like right here. So for my eye to go down and make it about the boots, is a little bit more difficult. But here's the other thing though with boot companies. So like what I just said there is true, our main focus is the jacket. But a lot of times with boot companies, if you look at their advertising, it won't necessarily always feel like the one for one boot ad. So I think this is still a phenomenally strong image and I like that you're just barely playing with rules of thirds. So if you follow my work at all and you look at the composition, I never shoot hard rule of thirds, like I think it's just a really, for me, it's an unsettling composition paradigm, but this one you're like almost 50 50, but you're, you know, you're still flirting with this side of the image and of course the river. So anyways, you totally get composition, you know? And the other great thing about this photograph that I love, that's working is, this is super even light, like all this light is even, some highlights in the backs, this is obviously very close to the end of the day, but you know, great use of light, it's super light, it's super nice and lovely. I would've maybe wanted this same frame, just a little, a couple steps back because then we could have photographed it or cropped it, four by five as an option too. So, yep. And I think this one is like that same idea that I was talking about before, but a little bit more exaggerate. See how we like lost the bottom of her boot, so that, I think that's where now it's gone too far. But what I do love like super natural feeling, you know, this does feel like lifestyle fashion work, right? It doesn't feel like just a pure, you know, snapshot of someone that you just encountered, which is okay, like that doesn't make the work more or less inherently valuable. But it feels like we are somewhere to photograph this girl in this beautiful location. But again, just watch out for the bottom of that crop, 'cause I think that the image really needs that full boot being shown, like that's not the most ideal place to cut off her feet. But man, I love her pose and her hair, super great model, you know, like very, she doesn't seem like she's a professional model, but she seems like a friend who's really great in front of the camera and is very comfortable with herself and being photographs. So those are awesome friends to have. Is this a good, is this valuable? I need some feedback too Joel. How are we feeling? I this helpful? It's long, I've been outta school since 2009.
In the series, maybe in the context of the series where we're having a shot, that's just totally purely dedicated to the shoes, like if it was just on itself, but when it's mixed in with the kind of like personality, the light personality of the friend that you were just talking about.
How do you think serious this looks?
Yeah, absolutely. You know, I think, you know, yeah, I think these are great. I could more see this image as like a hitter to the website. Yeah, but you know, those are fantastic. And it's just watching your crops, you know, just making sure you're not cutting body parts off at awkward places. You know, this image, like I struggled a little bit with, because I don't wanna call it cliche, just trying to think of the better word, it's just been photographed a lot and I think to like, okay, so two thoughts about it, one, I think sometimes you just need to go ahead and shoot photographs even if they are cliche or if you've shopped them before or if they've been done a lot, because sometimes you just have to get it outta your system and then when you make the work, when you shoot this image, that's gonna inform the next image that you create. So it's really important that you made this work in this particular photograph. But I've just seen it a ton, like I think for this image to now, you know, be something like really beloved or just like, you know, just like over there, it just has to, it has to have like another element. And this is like a little bit like ineffable, like I can't totally explain what that is and that's kind of the journey of the photographer to discover, but it just has to be over the top amazing. Like for instance, if you found two cactus in the desert that were both pointing up like this, and then your friend had their boots right there in the middle, like, that would just be like amazing, right? So that's kind of elevating the feet in the air. So that's often like what I'm thinking about when I'm making my work, is like, okay, we've seen I've taken this photograph before, you've taken it, it's not that it's a bad image, but like we have to continue the story and improve upon it and take it into a new space. And so something like the two cactuses or even if you, you know, man, this would be high level production, but just imagine if on the other side, so in this space you had two ladders on the left and right out of frame and then across the top you had another ladder out of frame and your friend's feet are coming down like this. And then the other person's boots are floating in the sky and they're coming down the, whoa here I'm doing it wrong, these are the boots coming up and then the other person is coming down like this. So like that kind of like quirkiness, and that's just something I was just thinking about, like how do we take this to the next level, to a new place? And that's really important to photography because this type of work that we're making isn't found images, it's created images. So that's my 2 cents on that.
Awesome. Just to keep the, if you don't mind, like let's jump to this photo and then if Angeline wants to say one more thing, but if we want to keep the ball rolling.
Oh yeah, yeah. And again, with this one, I think a little bit of like the last, what I was talking about, the last one, like this image is hidden in the right direction, like let's watch the space on the bottom, we're getting in a little bit too close where now we have no option or maybe you cropped it in, you know? But I would say just let's just pretend this is a raw photograph, leave a little bit more bandwidth on the bottom. And then again, we just need to have the composition be insane. Like we need to have like this road winding back needs to have the same feeling as this right here winding back. So anyways, I think this is a totally fine image. We just needed find that windy trail to carry the eye beyond the immediate photograph. And you know, this is super lovely too, lower product photo, but again, just watching the bottom of your frame, I think we're just cutting off just a little too shallow.
Awesome. Angel Lee, is there anything you would like to say to Theron before we move on to the next series?
Just thank you for taking the time to go through all the photos and I appreciate all the feedback.
Yeah, thanks for taking the workshop and listening to me ramble on a Thursday.
Thank you, Angel Lee, thank you.
Okay, awesome. Oops.
Yeah, and Joel, we didn't say like, I know not everyone is having their work reviewed, but I am gonna try to leave some bandwidth at the end if anyone wants to ask me a Q&A. that that didn't have the work reviewed. And also, you know, obviously I can't see you but please, you know, take off and do your life at any time as well. So I just wanted to give everyone a graceful opportunity just to say, don't feel bad if you have to take off.
Awesome, Sounds good. Next next we have up is Corbin. You've met Corbin?
I have met Corbin.
So Corbin, you're able to talk, and I'll ask Corbin if you want to be on video too and say hello, like we can make that happen as well.
I'll come say hi.
Okay, he's rejoining as a panelist.
Here we go.
Hey guys? How's it going?
Corbin, what's up?
What's up Theron, how are you?
I'm good brother, thank you.
Thanks for the invite.
Yeah, yeah. Thanks for submitting work and yeah, let's just look through your images, you know, man, this one's great, right? You know, I think that you really, this one, you just nailed the moments right. This is like what you would call the decisive moment. So just a little quick, little quick dive into the history of photography. So if you look at paintings before the advent of photography, horses always had one of their hooves on the ground at all times, and then post photography, that's when you first started to see horses with all four of their hooves coming off the ground when they run, 'cause everyone assumed that they always had one on the ground, but through photography, through high speed photography, they actually discovered that they all leave the ground. So anyways, that's just always what I think about when I see a space under people's feet, about horses running. Yeah, man, the light's great, the setting is interesting, this is kind of what you would call a decisive moment a Henry Cardio Brant idea that there's always like a perfect moment to capture an image. And you know, I actually, I really love that the, like the runner's legs are not like bodybuilder type of people, I don't look at a lot of like, I haven't really noticed any New Balance ads myself, but I like that they are kind of like an everyday type aesthetic, and this person's probably very fit, but they don't seem like a leg and calf model, if you're following my drift. So I think that's a good thing right now, I think like real is in and hyper polished. You know, obviously there's the kind of Kardashian side of photography and modeling and it's just not my world. So like a little bit more of the ecosystem I live in is real, the real world. So I think it's a great model choice. Yeah, this one's great. I would almost wanna see this like little ship in the background clone stamped out just because I don't, it's like stealing my focus just a little bit. And then right here--
It's a little bit distracting, yeah.
Yeah, so then like right here, a lot of times like cloning this shoreline, so where my cursor is if you can see it, you could grab a clone stamp and then just boom, knock that off and knock that off. And then I would take off these two dark there and just make it a little bit more crisp and streamline, you know, simplified a little bit. And those are like, when you start nitpicking images like that, that means you're onto something good. So just because the focus is a little bit stolen right here, with those.
Yeah, I See that.
And is this image cropped in?
No, no. This is actually very similar to one later in the set, but we shot it wide and I was trying to do like panning. And then we had like the texture in the sand was just really cool so go back to your talk about primes, I went back to the, I don't have a long prime, but I went to the the 70, I chose 70 on the 24- and we went back and like re-shot that.
Yeah, yeah. Worked great, you blew it.
With the focus on our feet.
Super nice. Yeah, so like these ones, like, let's just kind of like imagine the leg tattoo isn't there, we'll just pretend like to me, that's a call out, it's just distracting, but you know, let's just assume like this is the model you had for this assignment on short notice. But like what isn't working for this, like this sock and her leg over here, like I think we need to see both legs, you know? Like just this one perspective or it needs to be a little bit more intentional where it's almost like only like one leg. So just at peeking out through right there with like the not skin tone, like the tattoo being the end of her leg, that's just a part that's not working for me, but you know, the light's, getting interesting and I like the ripples in the sand. Yeah, man. And this is great too, like I think it's a great use of composition, oh I need let Mattie out real quick. Okay, Mattie, here you go. Yeah, so super nice, cozy location, good moment, I love the backdrop. I mean, probably if this was like a really high level production, they probably would've wanna had like a little bit of fill flash on the front just to kind of fill the space in. But I think you could do that imposed, it's just opening up these shadows a little bit on her. But yeah, great framing. I think this is a... I would wanna see more from the set or shoot more right here 'cause this is such a lovely frame. So this has tons of potential, super good, super good frame, interesting.
It was really challenging to pick six.
Yeah. Yeah, so like, I mean, again, I think these locations are super fascinating. You know, I love the setting. I don't know if this is quite the decisive moment as the same one, I wanna look at the other ones on either side of it. Like what is working for me is the setting, I think the light, you're shooting kind of at the right moment, even if it was overcast, looks like the light was breaking through, which is great. But I don't quite know if it's the decisive moment, I wanna see the frames on either side. Just to like kind of scroll through them. And that's kind of like as an art director, that's what you get to do. But you know, this is great space for copy. So anyways, I just wanna see more from this one, but the location and all the elements are there. So that's totally working for me. And then dude, I think this is, I think this is probably one of the most interesting and the strongest ones, I love the headlamp, obviously the ground is super interesting the one thing that's distracting for me is like this dark spot right here in between her legs. So I think I would probably want to just Photoshop this texture into here just to kind of even it all out and just make that one continuous smooth space. And I don't know if I love her hands and her sleeves like that. And again, we're kind of like in the nitpicking stage, which is like a really good place to be with photography because that means you're onto something good. And you know, again, I think just in post, we would probably want to just make her shoes pop a little bit more since this is kind of like about running, but you know, I think it's the, I think it's the right model, it's the right look, I love the head lamp, yeah. So dig it. And then just I'll hop back real quick to your first one, the color balance on this one isn't quite there yet. You know, like her skin tones are going like cyan here.
And I don't know if this image could be saved because we have so much green coming off the grass. So this probably wouldn't be a usable setting unless you make the image black and white, which is a way to salvage photographs like that. 'Cause then you don't have to worry about color balance. But I think that this is a, this image, this concept of foot on stair stepping off with the shoe and focus like as a product photo, I think that this is the right idea that should, you should continue to shoot more into it. Like if you were shooting a job for Last Coat Timber, you should take that same idea and keep shooting it until you find the right location and nail this photograph. Yeah. So, and man, when you get this close, this is that feedback where you're like, it hits you in the gut, you're like, "I don't wanna go shoot more." You know? But when you feel that way, that means you're really close to like a super successful image.
Yeah, I really appreciate that Theron, That's yeah. I thrive on that that kind of feedback of like what you could do more, like yeah.
Yeah, I mean, it's good to guess, it's what I miss most about school, so yeah. Cool man, thanks for hopping on.
Corbin, thank you so much.
Thanks for having me, this is great.
Of course. Talk soon.
Yeah, man. I'll hop off.
Okay, Theron, thank you. We were gonna jump into the next set and that is with Holly Booth.
Yeah, man, Holly, I love this image. Yeah, I'm digging this one.
Hey Holly, I think you can speak now. Would you like to jump in on video and say hello or?
I'll just do audio.
perfect, that's great.
Thank you so much. Yeah, I love this image, it's great.
Oh, thank you, Theron, and thank you for reviewing this, I really appreciate it, I'm excited.
Yeah, and again, I think it's the same thing like if I don't know, is this a cropped image?
It is cropped in, yeah.
Okay so we have a little bit of room. So like, you know, it just depends on the usage. Like if we're talking about a photograph with copy on it, you know, if a brand was gonna put some kind of logo here or text, I think it totally works. If we're talking about it just straight photograph, like I'm yearning for just a little bit more space down here in the bottom left and below the boots. But you know, again, we're in that nitpicking space, which I've said a couple times is the perfect space to be in with photographs because that means most of it is resolved. So I love the cuff. I like how the cuff is like hitting the boots. Like this just feels very natural. It doesn't feel like overtly, you know, contrived. 'Cause a lot of times when you, if you're shooting lifestyle for a brand like this and you start like trying to perfect everything, you end up ruining and you can like over touch the product and the shoes and it kind of feels like you're like, "Hey, walk up and like look over this wall." And you just kind of capture this on the toe moment. And man, Dana would just like love this. So just a couple spaces that I would improve. I would just clone stamp out these little black things right here just to kind of like simplify that and then I think I would clone stamp out this little twig right here in the middle. But you know, again, that's so minor, but that's just next level elevation, but yeah. Fantastic image really dig it.
Great colors, nice lighting, I mean super even, but it's, you know, it's still directional, we still have shadows on this side. So noise. Okay, so a couple things, let me try to stick to my guns and talk about things that I like about it. So again, I think we're struggling, okay, let me just get, we're struggling with space on the bottom still because like my, when I look at this image now, now also wanna say like take this with a grain of salt, you know, because I have my own composition style and my own preference, right? So like now we're talking about things that somebody else might feel differently about. So I don't wanna say like this is the only gospel, but my eye is landing right here on her wrist. So that's what I, when I look at this image, that's what I see. So that's where I'm honed in. So I need more information on the bottom, I need to change, you know, we just need to change the crop or we just need to reframe in the camera. I would've actually taken off her wrist or her hair braid right there. To me it feels a little bit accidental, that it got left on. It either needs to be a little bit more of a jewelry piece or I think it just needs to not be there, 'cause it's gonna, what what's gonna do is kind of creates a break right here. Oops. So that's just something I would've done. What I do love about the image though, is I love the color palette with the red laces with the sand. I like that we have some of her hair in it, and this is actually a photograph that I would love to see with just an open ocean background, like I want the sand, I want a clean, straight horizon and I want her hair coming down and the boots being tied. So I like that it's an action, I like her pose. Yeah, I think this one's just, let's just simplify the background and have that ocean horizon.
Cool, awesome. No, you know, like I did, I kind of felt like it was tied on the bottom too. So it was one of those things where you're like, oh man, like this, I really wanted to get the American flag in there 'cause like that's kind of a feature of the boot.
As you know, so, but yeah, no, I totally feel what you're saying for sure.
Yeah, and the good thing is like when you're that close and you can point out these things, that means when you go shoot next time, they're just more resolved, you know? So it's super close, and that's the best place to be. Yeah, you know, like totally fine. You know, like we've seen this, you know, from where I stand image a billion times, I've photographed a ton of them myself, I will probably shoot more of them. Place for improvement, I probably would just clone stamp this out right here just to smooth that out, 'cause it's, it is grabbing my eye a little bit. I like this kind of wavy texture going on, but just kind of like smooth that out and it's totally fine. And I think the thing I should say about this image is like, you should shoot these, you should take them, you should deliver them to brands because they'll use them on social or Instagram story or as a product. So like not every single image you take can be a home run, like a lot of times you come up and you just get to first base or you strike out, you know it's like, I think it is good to remember that again, shoot the cliche image, get it out of your system, create it, see where it takes you. And the things that you did well with this cliche image is that the lighting's really nice, you know, it's coming across, we have good shadows, I like that you did at least include this is I don't know a bench or maybe this is that same metal window. So there's stuff that I do dig about it, so I'm glad you took it and it's usable. Are you tracking my feedback on that?
Yeah, no, totally. I have a couple wider shots of it and I debated going back to the wider shots and then this 'cause I think it's a better product shot, but yeah. But yeah, no, I totally I'm with it for sure.
Yeah and this would just be on like danboots.com and like they have their products on white boring, and then it's like, oh here, here's like another swipe of it on a foot, you know, which is necessary. Okay and then little bit wider, more sense of place. I think that I wanna see her standing on top of the bus, you know, like I want her breaking into like I have all this wonderful white space up here, so I think this is actually where you've done a little bit of the opposite where we have a little bit too much at the bottom of your composition. So I think we should see her at the top, maybe walking across this rim of the bus roof. Sorry, I keep not knowing how to use technology. Yeah, I wanna see her up here, you know?
'Cause I think she would pop really well up there. And who knows? You might have that select, you know? But I love the laces, a lot of this is working, so I dig it. Did you get her up there?
I didn't, it was actually me.
I okay, self portrait.
Yeah, so I should've, I was losing light and it was just kind of fast to come through those windows, but you're right, that would've been a much more interesting image for sure.
Yeah, yeah. And the cool thing is like not to get discouraged by any of this. It's just to hone what we create, you know?
Yeah, no, it's awesome. This is exactly what I wanted. Like the, the tough stuff.
Yeah, is that your, oh no, here we go. Okay, is this self-portrait again?
It is, yeah. That's me and my dog Huck.
Oh, Huck has a cast on.
He does, he has a broken toe, but I figured I'd use it as a prop.
Okay, yeah. Yeah, like, okay. Here's what I love about the image. Like normally I'm not like a wide angle dramatic kind of photographer, I don't shoot like this, but I like that other people do because I don't see things like this. One of my best friends, Garrett, he shoots like this all the time and I don't. So I'm glad that you do. What I love about this image, I love your stance, I love your hair, I love the hat, like that's working. I think that I would've, Huck is getting a little bit lost. So I think maybe we should have had you come off of the bus and had the bus more out of focus. So the closer you get to the camera, if your camera lens is like an F 2.8 or a 1.8, you can start blowing out the backgrounds even with the wide angle lens when you get a little bit closer. And I would maybe wanna see you holding Huck in this one, like up your arms. 'Cause he's, just because this becomes a little bit of a jumbled mess right here. It's just a little dense. And even, I think using like Husk as a prop was a great idea and you know, even having the red boots with the yellow cast, would've been really nice. So anyways, there's stuff I love about this and I think just like, you know, let's explore more. And also if you're shooting this yourself, that's incredibly difficult thing to do, to capture a natural feeling moment trying to shoot photographs of yourself. So if you would've had a model this day, this would've been far easier.
It's so cool that they're all self portraits, especially the one earlier where your hair's kind of coming into frame that he was talking about.
Self portrait, very impressive.
Yeah, so like I want this photograph with the hair down here. I just wanna shoot it like in this like open Vista landscape.
Yeah. But hey, great images, great colors. And this kind of goes you to show that you don't have to shoot, the epic hero, glowy into the daylight. You know, there's plenty of room for, essentially when it's an overcast day, It's just a, I dunno if it's loud in the background, I'm getting a bunch of rock delivered at my house from a dump truck. But yeah, the overcast is essentially, just a giant soft box in the sky. So there's plenty of opportunities to shoot when the weather isn't an epic sunset, so nice job.
Is there anything else you need or do you feel you feel satisfied? Any questions?
No, it's great. Thank you so much for the feedback. I appreciate it.
Yeah, for sure. Thanks for--
It was great.
Yeah, thanks for getting the workshop.
Thank you, Holly.
Oh, we had more Holly. Sorry. Let's see here. Yeah, this Holly, what is working here so now I can, versus the second one, at least now like I can see Huck, what is going on. I like your look this direction, man, I love the boots here. Actually I even love that you're moving your foot a little bit, we have like a little bit of motion blur, 'cause like this one is not moving. But again, just watch the bottom, you know, bottom of your frame. And this is where one where if you had somebody else photographing this, let's pretend you wanted the photographer and the model, this would've been great if they could have gotten Huck's attention. So like you're looking that way, Huck is looking at the camera.
And then this is nitpicky stuff, Which again, a good space, I probably would've just clone, stamped this out right here, this log just to make it all one texture there, but man, yeah, totally the right track for that one.
Awesome, thank you.
Thank you Holly. Now we got Johnson Small. So we will just jump there.
Okay, LL Beam, man, I used to have these exact boots and I lost them somewhere. I remember they were like the red bottoms.
Oh the bison.
Yeah, That's what it was. I was like, yeah, it wasn't leather, It was bison, yep.
I'll be honest with you, I got them on eBay.
They were probably mine that someone found.
Johnson do you speak with a voice or did you wanna jump in on a video?
How do I, we can video. How do I do that?
Just rejoin here now.
No one's been commenting on how crystal clear my video is.
Maybe some people will now. Theron is using his DSLR.
Here we go, can you see me?
Good to meet you. Johnson where are you based out of? Where's home?
I'm right outside Charleston.
Okay, nice, delicious.
Yeah, yeah. It's about a hundred degrees right now.
Whew, man, I don't miss humidity. You know, I grew up in the outer banks, so I know that story.
Oh yeah, it's super dry right now. So it's crazy, but super hot. So we'll see what happens.
Yeah, let's just look through your images. So you did a shoot for LL Bean, that's kind of like the idea?
Kind of yeah. Yeah, so, well just like to a quick little thing, I mean, obviously I found you probably six months ago, my sister had mentioned something to you. I started, I was always, I needed to take some pictures for my company and I was like, well, I enjoy photography and I had a D850, nice camera and I wasn't really using it and I was like, I got this dog that I want to kill 'cause he's a cow dog and he's crazy. So I need to like bond with this thing a little bit. How do we get these things moving? And so I started just taking pictures of him as the subject and whatnot. And then people had mentioned your Instagram to me and that's kind of how it came to be. So I started learning all about photography in that sense as a super amateur. And then when I found your Instagram, I got, I was like, "Oh man, somebody's already done all this, this is crazy guy, insanely good at this, how does he do it?" And I actually wrote a question down too about like comparing one of the things I've done with you 'cause of the dog is it's really tricky for me to not go, okay, like looking at something that somebody's already done and finding the comparison problem, you know?
Yeah, and I think with photography it's often actually an okay place to start off with, it's actually like literally copy people out of, in self or intentional self awareness and then to go from there and to make it your own, and to make your own interpretation. So like I look at photography all the time, I get inspired by other people's images and kind of like, especially when I'm feeling stuck or interrupt because like, listen, I've taken like 3,500 photographs of Maddie, it's been a really cool blessing, It's also, sometimes it's exhausting and you know, most time it's amazing, but it's like, how do I keep growing as an image maker? And big part of that is just continuing to look at other people's work and taking little components out of it that inspire me and then trying to make it my own. So you know, that that's just a little insight to my process. And then with this photograph, like, man, like what I love is the dog's expression. It's just like, I think it's that decisive moment. You know, the pointy ears are great, it's like, I dunno if your dog always looks like this, but just like slightly mopey or like what are you doing? Fantastic. You know, I love that.
Just give me the hot dog, I'm over this whole deal, you know?
But this is one of those images where like you're really trying to highlight symmetry and I think to take it to the next level, we actually need to get the dog like perfectly in line with your Jeep. So like each ear needs to be touching the headlights. So we need to make, I should have had an app, oh, can I draw on this? Oh my gosh, I think I can, has anyone ever done this? Oh yeah, okay. Here we go. So this is like how the ears need to be, wow, this is next level. So the ears need to be, and then, you know, this is obviously not perfect. And then your dog's body needs to run this way and then the shoe needs to be here and the shoe needs to be here with the tire and the tire. Because this image is, we're so close, this image is about symmetry, but it's just a little bit off from being that. And then little things I just would've like just, you know, look out for these details when you're shooting, just like picked up these sticks here and this white rock, this can be fixed in Photoshop, but you know, when you're shooting, you know, I just wanna throw those off to the side just to clean and simplify. But yeah, I mean the light is super even, this is like a very easy lighting situation to photograph in and yeah, this is, this image is worth a re-shoot. So and this photograph would be pretty easy to recreate. And one thing I do like about the symmetry that you have is, let's see here, is I like with your dog's legs, I like that you can't see the hind legs, I like that we have only two legs visible. And it just kind of like enhances that thought that the dog only has two legs, right?
I mean, sorry. I could, lemme see if I turn up my ISO a little bit here on my camera.
Wow, I've never even thought about that.
I don't know how to use a camera apparently, oh, wrong way. Probably make a little bit brighter. Yeah, so yeah, I dig that. Okay. Let me clear that next image. How do I do this?
Can I ask you a quick question?
Okay, so I shoot the Nikon Z, I did go that direction, auto focus with dogs.
I mean like, so a lot of times I'm either it is a tripod intervalometer kind of set up or, and I'm constantly battling which way to go about that. Do you have a fail safe or is it always kind of situational?
Yeah, I mean, I do use auto focus, but I just use focus a single focus point.
And you know, on the back of the Z, I'm sure the same thing with the Cannon systems, you can like touch wherever you want to focus. So you can use like the little thumb cursor mover, and I'm always focusing on the eyes to the shoulder. So that's the point of focus that I'm only using right there, but it looks like you, you know, great depth of field and great focus on that image. So that one's totally working for me. Let's see here. Okay, yeah. So like what I love that you're doing with these images, I love that you went out here, are you the model here?
Yeah. So that's an intervalometer kind of set up, right? 'Cause I live down the middle of nowhere and it it's, yeah.
Yeah, okay. So like what I love that you did in this image, you went to create the work, 'cause that takes effort to go and do this, this is not without energy. So I love that you're setting up this situation. And photographing yourself as a photographer in the subject is essentially self portrait, trying to do a lifestyle image, this is a tall order. But you know, it's like, I love that you did this, but what's not working for me, like I think that the watermelon is a little bit too messy, like it's just too chopped up. It should have just been a little bit cleaner, nicer, you know, I've never quite cut a watermelon like that. You know, I don't like the watermelon back here kind of you're pooping a watermelon right here. (all laughing)
I didn't know how to cut it either, I was so excited, I didn't know what was going on. I like, I just gotta get into this thing.
Yeah, and listen, we can pull up a bunch of my images after this if anyone was standing, you guys can, I can show you all my bad takes and my ones that are not working. So like, don't think that like I'm like getting home runs every single time. But yeah, so this one's just not working for me, the lighting, but if we click to the next one, like this one is way closer to working, you know? Now we're talk, we're looking at the boots again, we have space over here for copy if we want it. It feels much more of a natural occurrence where you got your feet up, you're in a field. I would love to eat a watermelon in a field, it looks like you're just taking huge bites out of the watermelon, you're talking to your dog right here. I probably would clone stamp out your other cup over here, 'cause there's just not enough information of them, they just don't need to be there. And I would've loved to seen this a little bit wider or probably for this composition, I think this is a vertical photograph. I think you should have shot this vertical, then we could have had a full image of your dog sitting down looking up at you and we could have fit the whole thing hit to toe. So this is, this is great, I think we just, we should have shot it vertical because this, the dog's being cut off at an awkward place. But again, that's a simple fix, you know? So that means you had a successful image with just one tweak, so that's a good place to be. Okay, cool. Yeah.
It's the Instagram was about him, sorry Theron, and so I feel so terrible when I don't get both of them in and this little guy just showed up at the farm, so we decided to keep him. And so now I'm, I'm in a little bit of a, man I feel terrible I gotta, that's why cut him out 'cause it's like, but that makes total sense. Yeah.
Yeah, yeah. And the good thing about shooting vertical is the most real estate that you get on Instagram is cropping four by five vertical. So like, you know, not that every image has to be vertical, even though everything I do is vertical, not that you all need to, it's not a requirement, but it is a good format for Instagram right now. 'Cause when you scroll, everything's four by five. So I mean, you don't have to do four by five, but it's just that's the most crop that you could that you can get. Yeah, so like what I love about this, I love the end of the day light. I love your dog, I would've loved for you to maybe had a treat in your hand or whatever your dog's motivated by just to get their attention into the camera lens 'cause like their attention's all something else. I want the dog's attention in your face. And again, this is a vertical photo. So I like the boots, and I wanna see this shot again, just in a little bit more of a lush setting, you know, in a green field. So this looks like low season. And again, you know, hey, I'm just pointing out little details to keep in mind 'cause obviously this is the season and the timeframe and everything, it's like, it's not that I'm unaware of the challenges of this, but just, just pointing out 'cause this is about the boots. So I think this is a photograph you probably should have had jeans on and then just shoot your vertical just because we need more information down here.
Yeah, yeah. Well thanks brother, I totally appreciate it.
Thanks man. Yeah, I really appreciate you guys doing this too. Very awesome, thank you.
Yeah, you're welcome.
We got Mike Hosier.
All right. One moment. Hey Mike, how are you doing?
I just unmuted, is that working well?
Yep, yep. Would you like to be just voice or did you wanna pop in?
Video's fine by me.
Okay. I'm just gonna promote you to a panelist and you'll come back in shortly.
That's a pretty cool feature Thereon.
Yeah, I think my second time using Zoom.
I have no idea if that worked.
Oh, you're fine, Mike. Okay, So like the first thing I instantly wanna do with this photograph is rotate it left. So I just want it to be vertical.
Yeah, I think I actually did have it that way originally, but...
Okay, yeah. I mean, this is the smallest thing. So again, this is just one of those photographs that we've all seen a good billion times, from where I stand I've taken them, you've obviously taken them. I think there's still fine to take and to have as a part of a delivery package for a client. So like I think that's part of it if you're tracking with me. But then there's this other part that, you know, what can we do to elevate it and to take it to another level? So I think with this image, if we want to elevate it, I think it would need, I don't know, I don't know what that would be for this photograph. You know, I've taken this image in the past where I was looking down at my shoes, I was in green grass and I had, you know, Mattie's paws right here and her paws were right here. And then to have it, so these green lines are dog paws, she's out of frame And then back here is her head. Now I'm like holding a treat above the camera shooting, so like her neck isn't showing up in the image. So that's just like one way to elevate a photograph that's been taken a bunch to the next space. And I'm always saying that to encourage you that when you're shooting this, start thinking about things that you can bring into it, or setting, water coming up on them, you know, whatever that is, it's just good stuff to keep in mind.
Sure, okay. Thanks.
Let's see here. Gotta figure out how to, oh, wait, you gotta close it and then you can go on. Okay. Let's just scroll through them and then there's your, okay. So I think that this is a, you know, this is a good product shot for the brand, I think they would be really into this. The depth of field, I don't know if I'm feeling, I almost wanna see this barefooted, you know? With no socks.
Yeah, well, it's kind of funny 'cause this was completely random, like this is my son and we just happened to be out and I was like, you know what? I just got this challenge, you know, from Theron's workshop, I'm like, we might as well try to do this now. So it wasn't like, it wasn't a planned out thing. So we just kind of like we winged it.
Yeah, yeah, I totally understand. And yeah, there's this other side, like if I have an articulated will if, I mean, you know, I totally get that, but you know, like it's just, it's stuff to keep in mind because like when I point out things like this, it's gonna highlight things to you that you can be more aware of next time that you go shoot, you know? So I love the light, the depth of field is great. If in this image I probably would just wanna make sure you photographed it back a little bit further, just so we have some choices in post. Did you crop this image?
I did and I actually played around with the crop for quite a while 'cause I was going back and forth. So there's a lot, there's a lot more involved. I think this is actually shot vertical too, so I cut it really close.
Yeah. I mean kind of like, 'cause I want this van sticker right here to be the focus. So like, you know, I think my crop, but I want this shoe right here, you know? I think I would've in your frame. I think I would've brought your frame over here more.
And just had more of the ocean and have that vans right there, kind of be the center of the composition. So I think I would've liked that. 'Cause this gives us enough information Up here that it's another foot, so yeah. That's great though man, the lighting and everything. Yeah, dig that. Oh I didn't, I gotta clear it all. There we go. Yeah, I'm liking that you're exploring the motion here, but it's what ends up happening photographing this direction with someone moving is the image has become super flat. So I think we just need to see this from the other side.
Just because then we can see that they're actually legs. You know, we're kind of all aware of it because we're all looking at feet and photographs about boots and shoes, so we get it, but yeah, we just need to turn the subject sideways on that one.
Yeah, so there's no shoes in this one.
Yeah. But that's the other thing that's, it's good to remember when you are, you know, shooting for yourself or for your client, is that these images like this when they come up, they're like you do need filler photographs, You know, like you need images that don't have boot in them every single time. Like I just shot a job for Bloodstone, they have a new welding boot coming out and obviously I shoot the sparks and the boots themselves, but then I pull back and I'm photographing details in the workspace and neat little corners and moments that come up that have nothing to do with the boots. And those become my kind of B-roll type images that Brants end up using for backgrounds, for textures. And those are just good things that pad your deliverables. Like give a client 30 images, giving them 50 photographs just makes you look good for them. And they're like, "Oh wow, thank you for over delivering."
Yeah, I kind of think with this one, I had that sort of thing in mind that you're saying, with the next photograph, I believe it's the next one, you know, thinking that like if a brand, oh, and I guess that's not that one, maybe the next one. Yeah, like this one, like that would be sort of like the other was the closer crop and this is more of a, you know, so if you were using those together, you kind of would correlate them as this one.
Sure, yeah. So this, I mean this, like these two just kind of became difficult lighting situations where you're trying to expose for the sun and for the foregrounds 'cause this is all dark. And pretty much what I wanna see, I wanna see this color of the dog, this like kind of like brown color with the pink shoes. You know, I mean, I would love just love to see, you know, this photograph with the dog, the texture down there. I think that would've been a really nice 'cause this is really wonderful lighting. You know, this is great. You know, when you start to get here, you're trying to expose to the sunset and for, you know, and for the shadows here and that's just a really dynamic difficult exposure to get. But yeah man, this, I think this is the light to stay focused on and to remember, you know? You know, see like this thing now you're not trying to expose for the sunlight, so the dynamic range is much and your camera can kind of easily deal with everything.
Yeah, thank you.
I appreciate it. Very validating just be able to chat with you about this. So I appreciate you guys doing this.
Yeah. thanks a lot.
Yeah, for sure.
I have some time for some Q&A's, Joel I don't know what you have going on in your.
Yeah, let's just jump into some Q&A's, let's do like 10, you know, a few more minutes, we kind of ran over.
Yeah, it's fine, I got a few minutes. So if anyone has, or if anyone, and if I didn't get to anyone, I do have access to other people's, you know, I can do one photograph from, from others. So it's whatever y'all want. If anyone has a question.
If anyone has a question, just go into the chat or the Q&A section just at the bottom.
I gotta get, I'm not leaving forever.
That's okay. Gordon, I see your question. We can ask that to Theron here shortly.
This dog I found outside.
Any clips on posing models? I found that challenging.
Oh, is there a literal Q&A section?
Yeah, there question Just in the chat. And then Robin did say like, "Hey, I see I was next, do you mind just like, we could just go really quickly through Robin's photos.
Okay. Wait, so hold on. Let me, are these in the chats? Where are they at?
There's one in the Q&A from Corbin. And then in the chat, some people have just laid three questions in there.
Okay, let's see here. My brain's not organized, where do I start Joel?
Okay, so if you go in the bottom of the banner Theron, where you share screen on the left is a chat and on the right is a Q&A and you can open both of those panels.
Okay. So I see the Q&A. Could you go into detail a bit about vertical versus horizontal composition with commercial work? Yeah, so like when you shoot commercial work, you just should shoot both, you should cover your bases and give them options. So like with that shoot for Bluntstone I just did, I shot almost everything vertical and then it's easy just to flip your camera and shoot it horizontal at the same time. So then in post you have an option. So a lot of times with the image, I would give them two options. Okay. Yeah, this is, let's see here. What camera? So I can't show you cause I'm using it for my live stream, but I shoot with Nikon right now, I have the Nikon Z and like 99%, did my video go away? I might have, you know what, I think my camera over, I think that was the end.
The limit of recording?
Yeah, lemme see if I can, we'll just go to back to standard deaf life, let's see here. I actually am fairly tech savvy. Let's see if I can do the video. Here we go. Okay. Ah, look at that low quality. Oh gosh. I think my battery died. Yeah. So I shoot with the Nikon Z7, with almost everything I shoot is on 35 at 1.8. So that's my favorite lens, is the 35 prime. What's the trick to Maddie's ear stain open to some of her portraits? It depends on what photograph it is. Is sometimes there have been natural wind in the past an ear out the window is natural wind, but like I shot a job not too long ago, well, a couple months ago for Petco and she was like sitting on a bag of food and both her ears are just like kind of unnaturally up. And what that is is I take two C stands and fishing line and then I bring it down to her ears and I take a little bit of painter's tape, you know, which is like not sticky, doesn't pull any fur off and I just put tape on her ear and it just kind of holds it up. And then what I do, and then I make that photograph and then in another image I shoot it again and then in post, I put the two ears together. Just because it's too much to try to get them both up 'cause like she'll like, she'll turn her head or whatnot, but doing one at a time is easy and then you just merge them in Photoshop.
Yeah, any types on posy models? I found that challenging. Hey, like totally. And this is why you kind of hear like once in a while on like big level culture, like, you know, like famous Cindy Crawford, famous type models, getting, $50,000 a day. And that's because like the model talent is as valuable and as much as skill set as the photographer and people who are natural in front of cameras, they have an ability, they're actors, essentially they can drop into character, they can look free and they can kind of have high energy and then they can like, you know, settle down. And so modeling is very much acting. BuT if you're photographing your friends or you know, people who are not professionals, the important thing to do is just first of all, to choose someone that enjoys to be photographed, that's the first thing, like you can't photograph someone who doesn't want to be doing or is gritting their teeth the whole time, so start with that. And then the best thing to do, if they're not a professional model, they haven't been doing it very long is to give them a task. So like if you're trying to get a shot of them walking, be like, "Hey, step all onto that rock." And have them repeat it four or five, six times and then shoot that. And in that flow is when you find that decisive moment. So it's having them repeat it five, six, seven times, shoot it all. And then that's how you're increasing your odds to find that natural moment that just falls into place.
Awesome. There's a couple more questions in the chat, but like we can also tell everyone we're doing a webinar later too, like if you gotta run on time Theron.
No, I'm good right now. Let's see here, let's see here. We're looking at Nick's, with social, feels like things are getting so overdone. Yeah, man, I feel you. Any suggestions for plug into your own creativity to produce new, different, exciting work? What helps you get into that head space? Yeah, I mean, you know, it's a funny thing because like, I mean, you know, I essentially have like made a social career out of photographing Mattie, right? And it's something that I've come into a head where I'm just like, man, like, do I like, you know, after 10 years, does the world mean more photographs of her? Like am I still interested in shooting this? And what I've tried to start doing is I'm just trying to integrate her story with mine into things that I'm really pumped about. And like what I'm really pumped about in life is like I love photography, that's just like core level. But what has my attention now is building things, I'm just super into making houses and creating experiences. So I'm trying to integrate more of that story with photographing Mattie because I love her and I love having her there on the job site with me. So I'm about to start this small cabin build and a part of that is I'm going to be trying to document making interesting images, telling that story more in depth on social. So that's just what I'm doing right now. Let's see here. Do you have suggestions for photographers who are new to commercial photography? I had a really hard time with this process as I shoot mostly lifestyle photography and had a difficult time creating a concept from scratch. Okay, I don't know if I totally, you might, Joyce you might have to just rephrase that once for me or Joel, you look at it and we'll come back to it.
Yeah, we can come back to it. Let's see here. Okay, so Derek wants a photo reviewed. You're welcome, Holly if you're still here. What's your favorite lens to shoot with? We did that, 35, 1.8. Let's see here, Deborah's not technical question, "I was wondering what you think of the future of commercial photography and the importance of Insta. I've been a professional photographer for more than 10 years and the business has changed so much. Oh man, you're telling me like I'm and the business has changed so much from when I started, you know, cause I grew up and was taught by guys and women as well. My professors in school were all female, that they were all film photographers. And a lot of them what happened in the photography, there's a huge core of photographers that didn't wanna make the transition to digital. And 99% of them got left behind. And some of them didn't like, you know, heavy hitters, Irving Pin kind of people, they kind of were able to because they were so sought out for the one percenters. And the same things happened to my generation where it's like, when we first started out on Instagram, everyone was making fun of it, and now look at it, Nat Geo is on there, every, like the world's best photography currently is getting posted to Instagram. So it wasn't being taken seriously and now it is. But man, there's like so much content in the world that's getting published and put out there every day. I do see prices for photography coming down because the tools are getting so good and the algorithm and the iPhone. I know this is like a little bit of a thing everyone says like, you know, "The iPhone takes such good photos." I think there will always be a room and a space for very high level, incredible images, but all the mid-range stuff, I think we're gonna see that slowly going away because so much of it can be shot decently well on the iPhone and meet the needs for a lot of brands. So that is the most positive outlook on it. But I do see prices for photography continuing to coming down. And honestly, it's partly why I am trying to diversify even myself right now. Like I'm doing this Airbnb on this house that I built and you know, that's what a lot of my friends in the commercial space are doing because you know, commercial photography is a wave, like it's not, I don't think anybody would ever go like, "Oh man, become a photographer, It's the easiest money you'll ever make in your life." You know? Like I don't want to do any disservices. It's something you pursue because you adore it and you love it and you can't think about doing anything else. Is this gonna is this being recorded? Is this gonna be shared somewhere else? This is being recorded. And I think we'll send a link out to whoever has participated.
This should one time only. It's like this should be one of those comedy shows where no recording device is allowed. Okay, here we go, Joyce Chew. "Sorry, if that wasn't clear. Do you have suggestions for coming up with a creative concept for a photo shoot?" Okay, I can send myself a storyteller, telling a story that's already there versus creating the story myself. So essentially like there's kind of two camps of photographers. There's like found photographers who like document what is existing in the world, and then there's more of commercial photography side, like where you're creating images and you know, I think the suggestion, you know, I think it is like a, I obviously I'm struggling to answer this on the fly because I don't know if it's nature or nurture. I have the feeling like most the time it's both, it's something that I've cultivated myself, but it's also, I love building and making things and I love the process of it. How do you step into it and discover it for yourself? I would say the place would be to start, would be mimicking other people's, not to take credit for it or have it like, be like, this is mine, but just seeing if you can execute it and then try to add in other stuff on your own. I know that just that's so vague, it just doesn't have that like ABC, do this, do this, do this to it. There is a process and a craft and a skill all wrapped into one of it. But I'm also trying to encourage you. But the other thing is like we don't exist in vacuums. I would say just consume as a lot of photography, get books, go to the library, look at Instagram, bring in new resources, and like those things are gonna inform you and inspire you. Because we don't create and exist within a vacuum. And so much of other people's work has shown up in my work. Even like little bits of it where someone takes a self portrait and I was like, "Oh, I like love the dog on their head." In that moment I want to go, try to make, I wanna find that moment but making my own, I don't wanna copy them and represent it as my own idea. I would just wanna bring that element in to inspire me. And a lot of times I even go back and revisit old ideas, and I've been doing that a little bit more recently and that's been super beneficial for me to see if I can do it better, improve on it or not. Or have that be a catalyst if I'm feeling stuck.
Had everyone Joel, did we miss anyone?
No, I think that's spot on there. We did say like, if you mind, like just a two minutes, you know, run through Robin's photos.
Oh yeah, for sure.
One that we said he's here.
Robin quickly, do you mind doing that?
I'm going, I don't know what's happening on the side, but I'm going through the...
It's it's right after the last one.
Oh, it's in the Either section. Wait.
Oh, thank you.
How are you?
Is it in the?
It's the New Balance?
New balance here. I can send you.
Joel is it in the session 01?.
Yes, it's in the session 01 and it's right at the right near the end at the bottom.
Oh, okay, okay. Did we skip her? Oh, you know what? I'm so sorry, we did.
That's okay, I appreciate it. Thank you, I know you've been talking a lot, so.
Let's see here, let me share my screen. Am I doing that yet?
My background is in music photography so the brand commercial stuff is a different thing for me, so.
Yeah, okay. So you do, you know, portraits of bands or musicians or whatnot?
Yes, and I love your work. So I jumped this opportunity 'cause it's something new.
Yeah, so let's just look at your images real quick. Oh man, digging this one, yeah. This one's working really well. I mean like I'd love this is a great, the toned, got the toed leg here, that muscle right there. That's great. I don't know if this is self portrait or not.
Yeah. And again, once again, I think like this has been a little bit of a theme. I think let's just watch the space at the bottom and your crop, you know, there, that information might be there pre crop, but I would say let's just be careful. Like if I was photographing this, I would not want that to be the bottom edge of my camera because then I have zero options.
That's true, yeah.
You know, I've put myself into a bind there. Yeah, the only thing the only other select I might wanna see is like I might wanna see a little bit more if we could, like in our minds 3D rotate so I could get a little bit more clear cut of her arm, 'cause right now it does look a little bit like this like tiny little arm out of nowhere. Small. And again, we're in that nitpicking space, you know, but I think the moment feels great. You know, it is like it screams Adidas. The only thing you should probably be aware of or New Balance is you probably would not want to have the Patagonia pants on. So that would be just in conflict with New Balance 'cause it's their photo shoot, so just be aware of that, you know? And that could be an easy clone stamp, but that's just stuff to think about. If you literally are shooting something for a brand, just making sure that there's no conflicts with logos.
Yeah, for sure. That's something I would've completely spaced out. So yeah, that's great, thank you.
Yeah, yeah, dig the moment and it's, you know, I don't know, it's like, it's somewhere in between like dance and 'cause she's not running, it's more like movement and style and this would've been great if you like, let's just pretend the production was a little bit bigger, if you had someone offset with like a leaf blower, 'cause they make a battery powered now, if you just had an option with her hair in the background, so yeah. I dunno, these are just, this is just brainstorming to keep us going when we're shooting. Yeah, same thing here. Okay, so let me, I like the frame, I like the body movement that she's doing, I actually like her cross legs too, easy thing to do in Photoshop, we would just clone stamp out the people in the background.
I totally forgot to do that.
Yeah, no, it's totally fine. And this is me falling into that baby boomer trap where it's like poking at everything that's wrong, I'm so sorry.
No, it's I actually, when I saw that pulled up, I was like, "Oh shoot, I forgot to take those people out."
I probably, I shouldn't be anyways. I need to watch myself.
No you don't.
I just wanna, I just think it's so important to be encouraging. Yeah, so like I love the frame, you know, actually I think I would want you to shoot one without this, if you can see my mouse, I want more about this leaf information up here in the right corner. 'Cause like this bush frames, it really nicely, we have a little bit of a pathway and then I kind of want the hillside to continue on in perfection in this end. But yeah, I mean this is, you know, shooting right into the sun can work really well and it's not too distracting here, so yeah. And this would be like a little bit more, lifestylely not running for, you know, not like a running story for New Balance. So, I dig it. Yeah man, so this man, I think these are great. So the only thing that I'm thinking here, I just want her feet to cross totally into the horizon. 'Cause like we've gotten low, let's just go a little bit lower, you know? 'Cause like the things that I'm looking at is like we just have a little bit of Palm trees poking out of her head and I think I just would've framed it if we could have just moved her face right here so then we had just a clear view of her face, just because I don't love this jumble of Palm trees right there. And then I wanna see the shoes since it is about the shoes, I wanna see the shoes totally in the sky. 'Cause then they would just pop off the frame and it would be really clear. But what I do love about it is, this is a great model, you know, she's got a cool look, it looks natural. I love her expression right here playing with the hair a little bit, the light on her face is awesome. Yeah, I dig this image.
Thank you. Yeah, I lucked out with her, she's a friend of mine that does production. So she knew what I might be looking for.
Yeah, yeah. I mean, and I like this, I think let's just, just clean up the horizon a little bit, you know, like this would've been even a photograph that've been great like on top of the hill even. I don't know if you're, I don't know where this is and I assume this is--
It is actually on a hill, I should have gone later, totally.
Yeah, and again, just things to keep in mind when you're shooting for next time. So this one, yeah, it doesn't speak to me, it doesn't have that same kind of like found moment carefree as like these ones. Yeah, this one's not doing it for me, but that's okay. You know, what I do like, you know, what is cool though, is I wanna, let's see here, I want a tighter frame of, I like how the, okay, so I want this frame right here.
Because I like how the shoes are going up with the tree and I like the total sky in the background. So if you had like an 85 millimeter lens or something longer, I want that photograph. Cause I like the natural service of it curving up and I like how like tall, her legs are right there. I want that photograph, I think that would be really cool.
I like that. And then lemme just hop back to your, I felt like your product ones, that straight on product might been, yeah, so like this, this one, I think what I was just, remember what I was just talking about in your last photograph, the tree one? That is your product image, you know? Because it's like finding that natural landscape and putting the shoes on it. So it's something quirky happening and it's something like a little bit off kilter and I think that's gonna be your hero product shot. And the other thing, just little note when you're shooting stuff like this, you just have to be aware of like little things like with the sock here.
Little cause like the thing is like, let's say New Balance really hired you and you self producing this, you know, this could be a re-shoot where you have to go do more work and then the same thing with the laces, you know?
So every, all those little details add up, you know, and then you're like, the directors go, "Okay, well, we need you to fix the sock and the shoelaces." And then you're like, "Okay, we'll have to go shoot again, Now I have to book my model again, and I have to find another day and schedule it and et cetera, et cetera. So it's like when you are literally shooting for a brand, you just have to be hyper aware and try to nail all those little details. But yeah, yeah. I think man, you had a cool set, so thank you.
Thank you for your time. Thanks, that's great, great advice.
Thank you so much, Robin.
Theron, appreciate your time. Is there anything else you would like to say to end this session?
No, yeah. Thanks so much for getting my workshop and you know, y'all support getting the workshop helps me out. So I'm super grateful for that and it's not lost in me and you know, thanks for following along. So I appreciate it.
Yeah. Everyone, thank you so much for being here and getting that workshop, and Theron, always appreciate your time.
Yeah, bye y'all.