I’ve started my photography year 2017 with a new face: earlier in January I had the pleasure to have the lovely Alexandra in my home studio. It was pretty cool to meet her and work with her on our little portrait and fashion session.
Sometimes the simplest of ideas can be the hardest to execute. It took us quite a few takes to get this picture absolutely perfect. It seemed the pose was a little harder on Shannety then she anticipated. ’cause by the end of the session, she was all crapped up. And Elem, my make-up artist for the day, was happy she could stop waving that big piece of cardboard to make Shannety’s hair fly all over.
I have a cool tip for you that is somewhat related to iPhoneography: a desktop application to easily look at your Instagram stream. The app is called Grids and is available for MacOS and Microsoft Windows.
I love Instagram. It is by far my favorite photography app. I post all my photos to Instagram before I show’em somewhere else. My Instagram is a mix of photos shot with my iPhone and more serious stuff that I will shoot with my Canon dSLR cameras. I browse to IG to look at the work of other photographers and models. I use it extensively. I like the IG iPhone app but I am less of a fan of looking at my stream on the Instagram website. Even when I’m working at my computer, I rather pick up my phone to flick through IG than go to their website.
I’ve looked at a few desktop applications for Instagram and Grids is by far the best I’ve found. I have set up to mimic the look and feel of the IG app on iPhone. It sits to the side of my screen and I can scroll through my stream like I would do on my phone, liking and clicking on user profiles as I go along. It has pretty much all the same features as the iPhone app has. An added feature is the option to download photos; something that can’t be done from the Instagram website or the iPhone app.
I used to have to put a photo on my Dropbox from my desktop, get my phone, download in the photo from Dropbox and then post in to IG using the app. But with Grids, you can post directly to Instagram from your desktop. For now, there is no option to share that post to your other social media like on the iPhone app, so I hope the developers add soon.
I’ve finished my photographic year 2016 like I started it: a photo shoot with my favorite model Shannety. Back in January we worked on something with latex and color gels. That was new for us. And for our last shoot of 2016 we wanted something new too. Ripping up the background and have Shannety pop out seemed like fun.
Shannety is crazy about pink. She even named her Instagram Pink by Shannety. Go check it out. She runs a little fashion blog on her IG.
Using a pink background was the obvious choice.
Starting of with portraits was an obvious choice too. After a few shots, we knew this was gonna be fun. We aimed for a new profile picture to grace Shannety’s IG blog.
A major disadvantage of the iPhone—and any other smartphone for that matter—is that it has a wide lens and no zoom. Most apps try to overcome that problem with a zoom function.
Unfortunately that is digital zoom, meaning that you zoom in by throwing pixels away. If you throw away the edge of your photo, the center of your photo seems bigger and therefore it looks as if you have zoomed in. And the problem with digital zoom is that it causes a number of other problems: the subjects in your photos are less sharp, noise will become more obvious and your photos have less pixels. They will therefor look less interesting.
I never use the zoom function in my camera app. In fact, I have hidden the zoom function in Camera+ as I mentioned in an earlier blog post. Sometimes I will crop my photo when I edit it, but most of the time I use Olloclip to zoom into my subjects. Olloclip builds a series of lenses you can clip on your iPhone to change the focal length of your iPhone camera. They have a 2x zoom lens, a couple wide angle lenses and several (7x, 14x, 15x and 21x) macro lens. Lots of options that will help you overcome the lack of a zoom lens on the iPhone.
And with the new lenses for the iPhone 7, Olloclip has added a few interesting features: the clips will work on your front and back camera, you can clip them on over your screen protector, and you can mix and match 2 lenses to your liking.
Sara is probably one of the coolest new faces of 2016. We had a lot of fun on our 1st shoot and we say in touch. When we met again at the Belgium Curvy and Plus Size Fashion Weekend, she came to say hello and introduced me to her sister. We started talking about a next shoot, I showed both ladies some of my work.
As a joke, Sara’s sis dared her to do a latex shoot. The thing sorta stuck and Sara said she loved the dress Kim Kardashian wore at the Australian launch of her fragrance in 2014. A dress designed by Atsuko Kudo. I went to London, discussed options for the dress at the Atsuko Kudo shop, and returned home with some awesome latex ready for a photo shoot with Sara.
Asked my dear friend Elem in to the studio to do Sara’s makeup. And these are some of the results for that little dare.
My buddy Bart, called me a little while ago and asked if I wanted to assist on a four shoot. He said he had about 20lbs of plain white flour, 2 lovely models—Ella and Mandy—and needed someone to help him test his studio setup. I told him I was happy to help. He said: “Bring your camera so you can shoot a couple of pics yourself”.
A very big thank you to Ella and Mandy for being brace enough to get themselves covered in flour. And to Bart and Sarah of course for having me.
Work steared me to Nieuwport on the Belgian cost this week. It was a misty morning, the air was cold and still. A perfect time to pay a quick visit to the memorial to King Albert I. I had the place to myself. As I walked up to the Memorial it felt like King Albert I rode toward my on his horse, appearing from the mist.
The memorial sits on the mouth of the river Yser at the locks the allies opened to flood the German lines in World War I. It pays tribute to the Belgian King that stayed with his troops all trough the war.
It’s turning into a tradition: early December means it’s time for a Light of Day concert in Belgium. My buddy Jeffrey De Roeck brought LoD to Belgium again. LoD tries to raise money and awareness for Parkinson’s disease.
For the 5th consecutive time local heros Jesse Ashfield were opening the show.
Later Vini ‘Mad Dog’ Lopez, Rob Dye and Erwin Nyhoff took the stage. Later joined by Joe d’Urso, Eddie Manion, Jeffrey Gaines and Ben Arnold for a show that ran for about 3 hours.
When Jeffrey Gaines asked what we wanted to hear, someone in the audience yelled “Something Bruce”. The band gracefully obliged with Born to Run; a truly memorable moment. I think that pretty much everyone in the audience, there were around 250 in attendance, joined in and sang along.
I would like to thank Jeffrey for all his hard work getting LoD to Belgium year after year. And for allowing my to take pictures at the show every year. Looking forward to next year’s show.