Thursday, 19 November 2009

Graham Lott

is a photographer I just discovered...

Thanks to the amazing Calikartel website!

The quality and clarity of these images are stunning, something I want to work towards in the future! (Obviously waaaay off for me...)

Sometimes I wish that fashion images came along with details of how the image was shot (format, lighting etc.) just so i could try it out and not just sit here perplexed, wondering how someone creates something that perfect... I suppose that's half the fun of studying photography, experimenting so much that you can instantly tell the different tools and techniques used from looking at the image. I envy those people that can! I think I am getting better already though, which is good!

I recently spent a shoot (which I will detail soon) trying to completely eradicate shadow from the white colorama, and it took me a good while before getting it even half right. The physical process of getting the right image was so much harder than the technical information I had gained on setting it all up, the tiniest angle and changing the Broncolour by like 0.5 can affect it a lot more than I imagined!

Doing these shoots is a massive learning curve, especially when someone styling it asks me for something I genuinely don't know how to achieve, so I have to see what i can get hold of to do it, how it could be done and then just "wing it". I've learnt so much in the past few weeks!

However; it should be noted that this is all just personal work and nothing towards my degree (!!!) so i am panicking slightly at spending so much time on side projects. In Uni I've been using pinhole, large format and making panoramas and i'll detail that all soon too. Citin!

Monday, 16 November 2009

Too many posts

too many many posts, I have a lecture in 6 and a half hours, very bad times.

There is always time to ramble on here though. I'm behind on my blogs but I can't do a full recount of a shoot or a show noooow so I will drivel on about some other stuff I want to get off my chest, so to speak...

I have a project coming up that's due in around January, and my self chosen subject is my adoption. Not sure how I feel about this one at the moment, but think it will be interesting to document here all the same! Hmm...

I ate a salmon fillet today, and I always feel really sick after eating salmon but I never ever learn... I don't think it helped that I had it with prosciutto pasta and stuffed it with pesto and garlic cream cheese... BLERGH! Still feel gross now! About 8 hours on!

I never usually sleep, I probably get 4 - 5 hours on a weeknight, but the past two nights of this weekend I have slept for 12 hours. I'm wondering if it's due to this new heavenly duvet, and whether I will indeed get up for this lecture. It's on Hilla Becher and something else, but I never knew that the Bechers used large format and that's why the lines are all vertical. I never thought about distortion on different formats before, but you learn something new every day!

Hopefully tomorrow I will be able to learn something or other, probably that I am not made to get up in the mornings. I really have to hand back in this Metz flash at uni tomorrow, because I think if I hand one more thing in late they will stop me completely! I think I've been in every day getting something or other recently, ranging from flashes to large format cameras, lightmeters, 5 x 4 neg sleeves, broncolour kits, light clamps and god only knows what else! I think the best time was the fibre optic lighting kit though, never even seen one before!

What to borrow to take to Budapest??

I have been watching way too much of:

America's Next Top Model

I saw my first episode Thursday (my flatmate put it on while I was working in the kitchen) and I am HOOKED! Why have I never watched it before?! It is amazing, I love all the shoots and Tyra is hilarious. Sadly enough, we actually pick up some pretty good tips from it. Like smizing! I myself will never be able to smize, but I want my future models to do it!

& Skins

I love this show but my flatmate had never seen it, so we watched two series in 3 days, hardly moving from the same spot, and having random episodes of ANTM in between. Then we tried to watch the third series and switched it off halfway through second episode... total crap. The first ones though, have sorted my new mantra for life.... "fuck it." I'm going to do everything I can, starting with getting an ebay account (the crappest thing on my list)... this is a necessity because I now can't even be arsed to walk to town to rummage in second hand shops. Why bother when I can hand pick them online?

To be honest I don't see me ever leaving the flat again. What a strange weekend this has been.

My first "proper" shoot of this Uni year

All photography and editing by myself... although Blane's choice of editing, he loves crop and grain just a bit(!)


Models: Amie Maynard and James McKeever
Stylist: Blane Chapman
Stylist's Assistant: Kylie Tye
Assistants: Daniel Holliday & Nicole Macfarlane

A few major flattering photos of us "on set" too:

It was a really fun shoot, the models are a couple and so there was a great chemistry between them and no awkwardness. We changed locations a couple of times which broke it up a bit and it was hilarious moving all the stuff to the other house in view of all the cranky junkies!! Everything ran smoothly minus a light burning out and thus stopping the electricity in the whole basement, and a couple of trips during the running scenes! But all in all, very successful, even though the drinking started waay before the shoot, haha! 8 have to be selected out of these lot... not sure which will be chosen.

Monday, 2 November 2009

My Bad...

I haven't posted in a long time!

What's new?!

I've moved to Rochester in Kent. Consequently finishing at the exhibition. Started my degree, and to be honest am finding it very difficult. It's so different to being in London everyday, surrounded by real stuff and having to be professional and try and deal with the real world!

I'm all for having deadlines and briefs, it's the closest an education system is going to get to the real world isn't it, it's just that I am really not into the things we are getting to do.

For instance... the first project was called "First Sight", using black and white 35mm to document a new experience. I chose two ideas from my shortlist, ("the young folks" and "leaving London") of which I only printed from one set. My images were received well, even complimented, so I don't understand what it is that's made me so against the whole project?!

Another was "Brief Encounters", which was shooting on the street using medium format. I worked with a lovely girl called Amanda and we decided to scout Mothers as our subject matter. The last project was Internal Landscapes, I decided to shoot a miniature set depicting a drive in movie, as my original idea of railway model deer hadn't worked out (I couldn't find them within the space of a week!).

I think the dead set briefs are making me steer away, I mean my main interest is Fashion, of course this doesn't mean I can't try my hand at everything else, I think when people are saying "you HAVE to use this format" and "you HAVE to come up with this certain idea" it just takes it all away for me. Still I gave it my best shot, ended up liking each of the results, but still for me they won't touch on the happiness I get out of a good image of a pretty girl that I've shot.
Shallow, maybe!

Our next briefs are: to make a pinhole camera out of something interesting and shoot landscape, large format interiors, and a digital composite landscape. So basically, I am completely uninterested and have decided that as well as completing these, I'm going to start doing my own work on the sideline. This started with my friend Blane asking me to shoot his Fashion Promotion second year project, which I agreed to do, and now I have quite a few fashion shoots to be getting on with. Very pleased with this! Meeting with the stylists, trying to figure out their needs and equipment we should use is just so much closer to what I thought (and still think) i should be doing. I love collaborating, sure I can work on my own but everyone coming together to create something is just somehow so much better at the moment for me!

Blane's shoot is tomorrow and we are shooting "Vice magazine style". We had a bit of a brainstorm a few weeks ago and decided to shoot digital for the quick turnaround (his hand in is soon) and use a Bronica SQB for some black and white square shots, hoping to make them look as grimy and grainy as possible. The digitals will be edited in the same way, colour though, probably saturated a bit, lomograph style. Using one continuous light with reflector, a simple movable set up in the basement so we can capture the moments rather than have everything dead set. It has to look real and relaxed and casual, obviously at the same time has to be captured well and look great as editorial. I'm dead nervous, not sure why, I think it's the biggest shoot to date with two models, stylist, stylists assistant, myself and one or two assistants for me! Will post details tomorrow and behind the scenes.

Also have an ongoing project about Tracing Memory, I've decided to focus on my adoption and the material things I've got relating to it; whether or not they create memories or are proof of a memory or lost moment in time. I'm thinking this could either go really well and I'll feel at peace with it all and myself or I'll have a nervous breakdown and never shoot another thing! [/dramatic].

Leave you with some images from First Sight...

Also really need to send of CDs of 60s indoor shoot, another for the to do list!