It’s been more than two weeks since my last entry. Somehow it seems like two months. To say it’s been busy would be an understatement. Three dumpsters of jettisoned life. That’s how much stuff I got rid of before I moved. A lot of it was hard to give up, but I was trying to be strict with the “have you used/worn/looked at this in the last year” rule.
I hate moving, which I think is one of the reasons I stayed in my pervious small space as long as I did. But looking around here in the new space. There’s still an awful lot that I’ve brought with me. Although somehow, everything here seems to be serving a purpose.
Most people take months to move in. I suppose it will probably be that long before I feel fully unpacked, but since I bought this place to shoot in it, I figured I’d might as well jump right in rather than wait until I felt more settled. So even though I’ve only been here 9 days, I decided to get the studio set up since this weekend coincided with my good friend and muse Melissa’s trip back to Chicago.
I was really not ready when she arrived – my fault, not hers – but it gave us time to catch up a little before jumping right into the shoot. So as I opened fresh rolls of seamless and hosted them up higher than I ever have had the opportunity to before – I love my 13 foot ceilings! – we talked about how great it was for me to finally have a proper space to make my art. We both got giddy talking about it.
As we prepared for the first set up the thing I noticed in my viewfinder was that I even though I was shooting with a wide lens I could frame Melissa off center because the set was larger than any I had shot on in a long time. I actually laughed out loud as I began to frame the first roll of film. It was really great.
Since it’s late and it’s been a long day I’ll write more about today later. For now here are a few images. The first is one Melissa has been wanting to do for some time. It’s in the pin-up vein and it’s an homage to the Marilyn Monroe photograph that was taken by a photographer named Tom Kelley in 1949 and later ended up as Playboy magazine’s first centerfold.
Melissa and I were both happy with the image. She really felt good about how she looked. I agree, but a nice extra bit of fun for me is that it would have been impossible to make this photograph at my old place. In order to get the angle we wanted, I was ten feet up in the air on a ladder looking down on Melissa. I only had eight foot ceilings at the old place.
This is also one of those times when I’m having a hard time deciding whether the image should be B&W or color. That’s the one thing I’m still trying to get used to with digital. With film, you have to make the choice in advance and load the camera with whichever you’ve chosen. Not so with digital. You HAVE to shoot in color even if you’re planing on making the image B&W later in Photoshop. This image was designed to be color, but I decided to try it out in B&W as well. By using only the green channel of the RGB (red, green, blue) the red sheet turns almost black since there is no green in the red sheet.
That’s a trick, by the way. Never simply click the monochrome button in your photo editing software when you want to make a color image B&W. Experiment with the different color channels and you usually can make the images more dramatic.
And finally, I’m not one of those photographers who usually takes a picture with the model at the end of the shoot. Always seemed a little cheesy to me. But I made an exception this time, since it was the first shoot here in the new space. Cheesy? You bet it is. But it’s a nice reminder of the first photographs made here.