Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Be Prepared (Part 4)

Some of you have asked about the thought processes I might engage in prior to a shoot. As I've mentioned -- I don't know how many times -- much of my work involves showing up (which some say is 80% of any job) and quickly figuring out how to proceed. Admittedly, there have also been times (unfortunately, way fewer times) when I've had the luxury of pre-planning a shoot. But that doesn't often happen.

I was going to sit down and write about this as a way of concluding these posts on being prepared when, as luck would have it, I came across an update on Zack Arias's blog that includes a video by photographer, David E. Jackson, where he describes the thought processes that went into a recent commercial editorial shoot he skippered.

As I've also mentioned (once again, "I don't know how many times") I'm kind of lazy. In the spirit of that laziness it occurred to me that I might not need to spend much time writing about this subject as someone else has already talked about it and recorded it and probably communicated it better than I might do with words alone.

Besides watching and listening to D.E. Jackson's insightful video, some of you might pay special attention to Zarias's words in his written introduction. Specifically, "As you are starting on your photographic journey many of your questions will be dealing with cameras and lenses and their settings. What lights were used and with what modifiers. What Photoshop actions were used. Etc. Then the day will come when cameras, lenses, lights and all of their settings don’t mean a damn thing to you any more."

Actually, it's not that they "don't mean a damn thing." They do, of course. But they take a backseat to things that are more important.

You see, once you're passed all that. Once things like gear becomes, in your mind, little more than the tools they are... once your ability to use those tools becomes almost second-nature and semi-automatic, you will be free to focus on the stuff that really matters when creating images. In glamour photography, that "stuff" is most-often embodied by the model.

To go to ZA's blog and view Jackson's video, CLICK HERE.

The gratuitous eye-candy at the top is Kayla. She's posed in front of a non-descript stucco wall. It wasn't my first choice for a background but that's where the client wanted me to shoot. Who am I to argue with the man writing the check? 5' Octo for the main plus a kicker, camera left, modified with a small shoot-thru umbrella, all mixed with ambient daylight and shot mid-day.

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