Oct 31, 2011

Katy's outdoor senior portraits at Freak Alley, Boise. Photos by Mike Reid, All Outdoor Photography.

I was a little resistant to shooting outdoor portraits downtown when fall color was at it's peak in the local parks....but you know what....I could have shot Katy anywhere and it would have worked. She is an obviously very pretty girl with a great combination of red hair and blue eyes.

Katy showed up for the shoot excited and shy.  We chatted a bit on our walk over to Freak Alley and she started to relax. We kind of eased into the photography and after about 15 minutes she gained her confidence and became a posing master.
After that I just had to put her in position and start clicking as she did her thing.
I love it when it is that easy, then I can concentrate on finding good spots in the good light.

These are all shot with natural light...seems I am doing more and more natural light shoots. I really like to shoot that way except when I am in a predominately green park area.
It was very sunny when we started so I changed my plan which had been to start shooting at City Hall and did the shoot backwards and started in the alley, so we were in good light the entire shoot.

Shot with the D3 and the 85 1.4 and the D700 with the 70-200. All in downtown Boise. We started at Freak Alley and ended up down by City Hall.

Katy's entire gallery is here: http://alloutdoor.smugmug.com/BoiseSeniorPictures/freakalleyportaits/19799536_TpTQgc#1556058836_MNcnbJn

Oct 27, 2011

All Outdoor Photography's last wedding, at The Wood River Cellars Winery in Eagle Idaho.

Jana and I shot weddings together for 5 years. When she moved at the end of last year, that was pretty much the end of it. We have not booked any new clients since then and do not plan to book any more.

This frees me up to do a lot more portraits and landscapes.

We were so lucky to have Palina and Steve for our last one. Beautiful couple, really so sweet and a lot of fun.
Wood River Cellars was the venue and it looks amazing in the fall. It was a beautiful fall day, about 70.

It was a typical wedding, everybody was late...which we pretty much plan for so everything went smooth on the day.

Lots of great photos.
If you want to see what a full wedding gallery looks like when done by All Outdoor Photography take a look at  the link. Last one so now or never :)

Shot with the D3 and 24-70 with sb800 on a bracket. D700 with 70-200 2.8 and the D300 with 24-70 2.8 Tamron.

If you have a minute go check out the gallery:
(Just click on the title above, the link is embedded)

Here is a photo of Palina and Steve.

Oct 21, 2011

Outdoor Portraits in Natural Light.

The longer I have been at this the more I believe the photographers skill at interacting with the person being photographed is at least as important as the technical skills a photographer needs to be any good at outdoor portrait photography.

Those of you that have been shooting outdoor portraits for any length of time and have perfected your craft know that the technical skills required tend to become second nature.
Technical knowledge of  how the camera works, iso, shutter speed, f-stops, are chosen/adjusted  almost without even thinking about it.
Don't get caught up in the equipment, a good portrait can be achieved with pretty much any camera and lens if you know what you are doing.
Don't get caught up in "the rules", if it looks good shoot it.

Light, backgrounds, composition, pose, personality, these are the components of a good portait.
Shoot during the right time of day to afford yourself the best light for the settings you have chosen.
Select the background first. The background is an accessory and should not compete with your subject for attention.
See the entire frame and place your subject into the frame in the most eye pleasing way.
Interact with your subject to put them in a position to look natural and complimentary.
The hardest part is to get some personality into the photo, this is where the 20 minutes you spent chatting with them and getting to know them at the start of the shoot comes into play.
Most would be outdoor portrait photographers will never put in the time and practice required to reach a level of competency and confidence which allows the technical aspects of the photography to get out of their way like they do for an experienced photographer.

A photographer whose attention is consumed with the technical and artistic requirements during the shoot is not free to concentrate on what is really the most important aspect of good portraiture, the psychology of the photographer subject relationship and the interaction with the subject during the actual shoot.

It is much more difficult for a  portrait subject to relax and feel confident in an environment where the photographer is spending the majority of their time messing, wrestling with their equipment.
If the photographers subject never reaches a point where they can relax, feel comfortable and trusting, then their true self will never be revealed to the camera.
This then is what separates great portraits from nicely exposed snapshots.

Now some photographers are naturals at putting their subject at ease quickly, some not so much.

This is where natural light photographers have a bit of an advantage. Spending to much time moving setting up adjusting and fidgeting with lights is really death on the relationship the photographer needs to form with the client.
Then the shoot has the potential to turn into one of those robotic, ok turn your chin to the left, put your hand on your shoulder, ok chin up 1 inch, smile, click.
Overdirecting, overposing, of the subject is a recipe for failure.
Find your background, place the subject where you want them in the frame, provide minor input and let them go. Many subjects will require some coaching, but keep it light and fun.

If your subject is relaxed, having fun and feeling attractive, that is when the magic happens :).

Anyway that is pretty much how I see it.

Oct 9, 2011

Tashianna's Portrait shoot in Freak Alley Boise. Outdoor Portraits by Mike Reid, All Outdoor Photography.

We had so much fun at this shoot. Tashianna has so much energy, we could have shot for hours.
Rained all day and stopped about 30 minute before the shoot. It was Very Cloudy and dark. These are actually my favorite conditions for portraits.

I didn't bring any light with me for this downtown shoot. Lights are to restricting and slow me down a lot. I am much more creative just "winging it". Taking time to mess with light distracts A LOT from the connection a photographer needs to make with the model and can really drag down the energy of a shoot.
I do use lights but it is a very minimum set up that takes no time to set up and/or move.

I love shooting black and white, the darker and grainier the better. So I pushed my boundaries a bit in this shoot and included some of that type of work.
Tashianna's classic Italian skin tone and hair color are perfectly suited for black and white.

I used the D3 with the 85 1.4 (old version) and the D700 35  1.8.
Most were shot at F2 or bigger. Love the short depth of field and really helps on these dark days.

Here are a few sample shots....if you like these I encourage you to check out the gallery.

Here is her gallery: