Design + the dancer

I wanted to post a few recent images I did with dancer/ stuntwoman Alana Schoen in LA.  Probably my favorite styling to work with is a black turtleneck and leggings; I’ve done it many times with many different models and it always comes out with a super clean design that appeals to me.  Alana (228 of 513)-Edit

All images shot with th eFuji X-T2, 35mm lens, LED lighting.Alana (233 of 513)-EditAlana (1 of 9)

Alana (510 of 513)

Help support the Primordial Creative studio via Patreon and check out our photography tutorials on our Skillshare channel!

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Documentary Portraits, 20 Years Later

Hello out there! This time I’m showing you some of my earliest work- portraits I took while working in developmentally disabled group homes circa 1998-1999. It was my early college years and I was full of social crusading juice. These were all shot with the blessing of the clients and their families, and I describe what I’ve learned in years since about what makes a good documentary portrait project. I also show you some of my recent work with my daughter Magdalena.

Help support the Primordial Creative studio via Patreon and check out our photography tutorials on our Skillshare channel!

Finding Your Photographic Vision #1: Heroes

In light of the massive number of gear reviews and how-tos on YouTube, I felt like making a short vlog focusing on developing a personal vision.  In Part 1, I tell you about some of my own photographic heroes – Sebastio Salgado and Ralph Eugene Meatyard- and how they influenced some of my own work.

Maryjane / Bar Fashion

These images were “round 2” with Portland model Maryjane McLain, which is to say, the second time I got to work with her in the last 6 months or so.  We had access to a dive-y bar which all kinds of psycho stuff written on the walls, and it was a complete blast to shoot amongst the bar patrons and in the creepy, ratty basement.  I have been a recent admirer of the South African rave-rap group Die Antwoord who have a similar rat-like vibe thanks to their frequent collaborations with photographer Roger Ballen; it’s not quite the same as shooting with a stylish Maryjane but you can see where some of the influence comes from.

Maggie at the Petrified Forest/ Painted Desert

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I’ve always had a problem: I live in the Southwest- surrounded by exotic, beautiful environments like the Painted Desert- but it’s just far enough away that it’s not feasible to take a pro stylized model with me to shoot out there.  Enter my daughter Maggie, who at age 8 has been in enough of Daddy’s shoots in her lifetime to finally get styled and shot way out amongst the petrified wood.  Hair and makeup done by her mom/ my wife Vesna Miller.  We’re going to make this a routine thing- once a month- with the goal of building up a youngster to be an ultra stylized look.

All images done with Fuji X-T2 and either the 35mm 1.4 lens or 23mm 2.0 lens.

Preview: “Capturing the Face – A Guide To Creative Portrait Photography” Kindle e-book

Capturing the Face cover

October 16 sees the release of my first Kindle e-book, “Capturing The Face – A Guide To Creative Portrait Photography”, via Amazon.  It’s structured around the 10 components that I believe are key to making artistic images of people:

  1. Your subject

  2. Location

  3. Styling

  4. Compelling concept

  5. Lighting

  6. Image capturing method

  7. Post production

  8. Formal visual art considerations

  9. Paperwork

  10. The X factor

These elements are all vital pieces to making something magical and I’ve found each worthy of deep exploration in Capturing the Face.  I know what it’s like to do a shoot and end up with one or more of these elements overlooked, and as years have gone on, I’ve learned how to make sure each one is addressed so I get personally satisfying results.  In the coming weeks I’ll put up some snippets of these chapters.  Capturing the Face: A Guide To Creative Photographic Portraiture is 44 pages, $2.99, and available for pre-order right now.

Valentine’s Day Special – Baby Revisions

Maggie's Birth 072808_93-Edit

A photo contest for baby photography had me revising some of my images of my daughter Magdalena in her first few months.  These were shot in 2008, edited 2015.

Maggie's Birth 072808_94

This year I’m finally organizing my daughter’s photos into a cohesive set of images.  She’s just one of those people who seem suited for black and white, or at least my relationship with her seems suited for b+w, or maybe I go b+w since most of her clothes are ridiculously colored things that

Maggie's hand

If you enjoy any of this work I encourage you to like it and share it!  For more photoworks goodness peruse my Etsy shop, follow on tumblr and twitter and instagram, and rummage around on my full site.