Had a wonderful time volunteering to photograph the one and only James Armstrong, bluesman. Nearly 3 hours of rocking the roof off of the Beaches Chapel in Jacksonville Beach. The chapel is over a hundred years old and was moved to its current location by the museum. The acoustics are incredible. A super moon made the evening more magical.
Patriot Rail COmpany in Jacksonville wanted me to set up a small studio in their conference room. Its always harder hauling large soft boxes,backdrops and equipment and working around furniture. The result is nearly the same as in the studio except working in small spaces inhibits some lighting issues. Many of the executives wore eyeglasses which requires much more directing to tilt heads perfectly so the reflections of soft boxes don’t hit the glass.
Eleven Atlantic LLC needed new business portraits for their new office and website. The web designer wanted full length shots of each executive, shot on white which will be silhouetted out, made black and white and cloned together. I used a large photo white fabric backdrop which had some wrinkles but knew it would be stripped out. Getting people to pose with some fun is always challenging because most people are uncomfortable in front of a camera..but we actually had fun making it short and sweet. I then took all of them to my garden for a simple natural light shot.
Since Hurricane Matthew hit our beautiful beaches, it has become difficult to do a portrait on the beach. We lost yards of sand and the lovely dunes are mostly washed away and there id s cliff of sand. Therefore, I am trying a second location before heading to the beach. Besides giving the family a different look, its nice to have more images to choose from. Working quickly is imperative especailly when there are toddlers.If a scene doesn’t work because of light changing or a fussy little one, move on. You can always try it again but meanwhile everyone is having fun. Most people cannot smile on cue so working quickly and having fun is important. When shooting on the beach, only shoot when the sun is very low to avoid squinting. Having a second location to keep your clients engaged works well while the sun is getting lower.
Photographing a family with 95 year age span is challenging. The baby was so little and the toddler was very cranky and then, posing a couple in their mid nineties made the group posing difficult. The grandparents couldn’t move or hear very well and trying to get them to smile on cue was difficult. But as a photographer, my job is to make people enjoy the portrait experience. I work quickly once I get the configuration grouping then I encourage a laugh and smile from the youngest to the oldest. The Tinsleys are such a lovely family.
The Neel family from Neptune Beach wanted a beach portrait since they live at the beach but after hurricane Matthew blew through, we are missing a substantial part of the beach. The dunes which normal are a gradual slope to the sandy beach became a cliff of sand where 8-10 feet inland and at least 5-6 feet vertically is missing. We made it work but missed the lovely sea oats which were destroyed.
I have been photographing the Peterson family for years and its wonderful to watch the kids grow from infants to little kids. The children know me enough now that they like to pose. They are well behaved and so darn cute! The park we chose had a lot of ducks and wild birds, hence you had to watch where you walked on the paths.
The Martell Family with grandmother and grown kids was quite successful. It took place in St. Augustine Beach as they traveled to all stay there from other parts of south Florida. The weather cooperated which is always chancey in Florida. They chose the white shirts and jeans for their outfits which gives a classic casual beach look. It took an hour each way to drive to the location but was worth the drive since they were delightful to work with.