EMOTIONALLY CHARGED SPLASH

FRESH KILL

This shot was taken for an assignment from a photography hangout I take part in on Google+. The idea was to shoot an ’emotionally charged splash.” I tried my luck at splashes which are quite difficult. I figured I’d go with liquid dripping which is a bit more controlled.

IDEA AND COMPOSITION

While coming up with the idea I happened to be in the kitchen cooking and had the idea to use the butcher knife I was using. I also thought that if I used a red liquid to simulate blood that it would create a strong emotion.

For this shot I used 3 strobes, some white foam core boards for bouncing the light around, liquid dish soap with red food coloring and to hang the knife I used a wire coat hanger using a hot glue gun to attach it to the handle.

The shot was quite fun to make. I first hung the knife and set up a strobe with a red gel behind and below the knife aiming at the backdrop. Then after I had that effect, I then started to place the other 2 strobes into the shot. I have one strobe with a DIY grid behind and camera left which is what gives the rim lighting on the top edge of the handle.

I placed another strobe, with DIY grid, in front of and to camera left as well, shooting through a diffuser, to create the lighting on the tip of the blade, just where the blade and handle meet and the lighting on the bottom and back end of the handle. The handle lighting I was able to achieve by using white foam core to bounce and soften the light on the handle.

I made the blood with liquid dish soap and several drops of red food coloring. After I had the shot all set up and lighting the way I liked it, I used a spoon to pour the ‘blood’ down the edge of the knife. I built up the flow so that it would start dripping. I fired off shots while looking through the view finder and timing when the drips would occur.

FINAL SHOT

To get the final shot you see below here, I used 2 images I had shot and brought them into Photoshop. I really like the overall shot of one image, and I liked a particular drip in the other so I masked the 2 together. After that I spent time to remove all the dust and specs from the image which took quite some time. I also adjusted the background slightly to get the mood I was after.

All comments are much appreciated. If you like what you see, please consider following my blog. I do hope you found this post to be helpful for you in your own photographic endeavors.

Please also find below this final image a few outtake shots and bts(behind the scenes) shots I took with my phone.

If your interested in following me on Twitter you can either click on the link below or go to twitter and click on follow. I’m now also on Google Plus which is a great new platform. Are you on Facebook? If so please ‘like’ the Maugiart Photography Page.

Here are some BTS (Behind the scenes) shots of my setup. As you can see from the 2 photos below, I have the 2 strobes on the left. The one on the ground is what lit the face of the blade and also bounced the light from it to the handle with the foam core boards on right.

In this shot you can see the setup after the ‘blood’ was poured on the blade.

Here are a couple outtakes from the shoot. As you can see from these photos the wire coat hanger that is holding the knife. Of course I removed that in post production.

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STUDIO PHOTOGRAPHY INSIGHT HANGOUT

JOIN THE HANGOUT TONIGHT AT 8pm MST.

Tonight please join us in a Google Hangout where we go over last weeks assignment to shoot an ad style watch shot.  Alex Koloskov & Dave Nitsche have been hosting a weekly google hangout. This will be the 8th one I think. It starts at 8pm MST.

SKAGEN TITANIUM WATCH

Well, it took me some time, and bit of cursing, but I think I got the shot I was after. After about 50 shots, I was able to get the shot I was looking for. I wanted rim lighting from the sides but the hard part was to get the face to be lit the way I envisioned it. I kept getting crazy reflections and what I wanted was a nice gradient of light across it. I ended up using a piece of white foam core board placed in front of the watch to reflect light from the side of the strip box back onto the face. I tell you, I tried all sorts of ways to get what I wanted, and then once I had tried holding a piece of board where I did in the end I knew I had the shot! Not sure what the time was to be set for or if there was a standard, but now after I’ve finished I started to look in magazines, and online and noticed that 10:10 seems to be the ideal time. It may be, but I do quite like the way the hands look here as well.

Do you know why 10:10 is ideal? If so, please leave some comments below so myself and others can benefit from insight on the standards that I’m not aware of.

If your interested in following me on Twitter you can either click on the link below or go to twitter and click on follow. I’m now also on Google Plus which is a great new platform. Are you on Facebook? If so please ‘like’ the Maugiart Photography Page.

Here are some BTS (Behind the scenes) shots of my setup. The watch is hard to see here but you can see my DIY strip box with the white board I used to reflect the gradient of light. Bottom left shows the other strip box through a diffuser.

Here you can see how I suspended the watch with fishing line on a home made metal contraption with self tapped holes to position in various ways on a spare tripod.

Here is a closer shot of the watch setup with strip box to the right through translucent fabric diffuser.

GETTING ART CRITIQUED

GREAT HANGOUT LAST NIGHT ON GOOGLE PLUS

Great Hangout last night with +Alex Koloskov, +Dave Nitsche, +ron gibbs, +Mike Broderick, +Jerry Nielsen, +Steve Savoie, +Paul Helfinstein  & +Anthony Moringello. (hope I didn’t miss anyone and if so I appologize)

Was really great to get critiques from +Alex Koloskov  on technical aspects of our shots and from +Dave Nitsche for the over all look. Was also helpful for us to be able to add our own opinions because critiquing other peoples work, which can be hard, allows us to have a new eye for what to look for in our photos.

It can be difficult to receive criticism from others but it can help to improve our art if we are open to listen to others. Especially is it done in a constructive way. Telling someone that *you don’t like something* is better than telling someone that *that what they did is crap*.

Now, it can still be a difficult thing to hear but if we can allow ourselves to get past our egos about our work, we can then be open to hear others ideas to potentially make it better.

Why are we doing this?

Ask yourself this question: Do you want to improve?

I’m not saying that your work may be bad, but if we’re willing to show others, especially display it all over the web, or possibly try to sell it, wouldn’t it be nice to have lots of other people help us hone our art? It’s still yours,and it’s still your style, but other people may be able to point things out that you may not have seen.

Last nights critiques

During last nights critiquing we discussed the lighting setups, the overall look and how to possibly improve things. Several time +Alex Koloskov would mention that maybe a highlight was missing, or that part of the image was a bit messy and would be nice to remove those bits; like little unneeded labels etc. +Dave Nitsche a couple times had mentioned how great it would be if +Genia Larionova  would join us. In going over the images and how to improve them what better way to improve the cleanup portion then by having +Genia Larionova, who is a fantastic #Photoshop retoucher give us her opinion on what she may do in post processing.

Well, I’ve rambled on long enough. I’ve been busy all day and finally had a chance to post a great thank you to all who attended and that I hope we can keep this up. Per +Dave Nitsche’s assignment we are to now use a bottle in a shot, not necessarily a red wine bottle, and do something sexy with it. I’ve got some ideas and now have to put them to action to see if they’re worth posting.

Please share this out for others to read and also to learn about the Studio Photography Insights hangout on Google Plus.

Cheers!

If your interested in following me on Twitter you can either click on the link below or go to twitter and click on follow. I’m now also on Google Plus which is a great new platform. Are you on Facebook? If so please ‘like’ the Maugiart Photography Page.

STUDIO PHOTOGRAPHY INSIGHTS

GOOGLE PLUS HANGOUT TONIGHT @ 10pm EST

Alex Koloskov & Dave Nitsche have been hosting a weekly google hangout. This will be the 6th one. It starts at 10pm EST. Tonight we’re going to discuss an assignment we were given to photograph a red wine bottle. That was the main subject and the rest was up to our imagination. There are some great photos so far and it will interesting to hear about the shots and how they were made.

THE STAINLESS STAGE

Have you ever been to Chicago? Or maybe you’ve seen a ton of photos of the ‘Bean’ that is heavily photographed here. I have to admit I’ve taken my share of photos of the Bean as well.

Just a stone throw away, or possibly a lob away, is this stage. They play live music here and from what I know it’s free. You can just bring a picnic, and hang out with friends and listen to great music.

The area is called Millennium Park which is home to not only this stage and the Bean, but a botanical garden and a couple giant square columns that have screens that display peoples faces. During the summer they spray water from those columns typically from the mouths of the people on the screen.

Do you have any interesting photos of Chicago you’d like to share? Make sure to leave links in your comments for us all to check them out.

If your interested in following me on Twitter you can either click on the link below or go to twitter and click on follow. I’m now also on Google Plus which is a great new platform. Are you on Facebook? If so please ‘like’ the Maugiart Photography Page.

GOOGLE HANGOUT TOMORROW

JOIN THE HANGOUT WEDNESDAY FEBRUARY 22nd

Tomorrow night please join the hang studio hang out where we go over last weeks assignment to shoot a red wine bottle. Alex Koloskov & Dave Nitsche have been hosting a weekly google hangout. This will be the 6th one. It starts at 10pm EST.

LIGHT PAINT RED WINE

Here is my take on the assignment from last weeks hangout. After 2.5 hours I finally got the shot I was hoping for. I thought I’d give light painting a try as I hadn’t tried this type of photography before. This shot was done in complete darkness and lit only with a maglite and I used my iphone LED to light the background. Each shot was a 30 second exposure. I also had my long exposure noise reduction turned on in my camera which meant for each 30 second exposure I had another 30 seconds of processing in the camera before it transferred to my computer. I took about 20 shots before I got one that I was happy enough with. With an additional 20 minutes in Photoshop to clean it up I think I finally was happy.

If your interested in following me on Twitter you can either click on the link below or go to twitter and click on follow. I’m now also on Google Plus which is a great new platform. Are you on Facebook? If so please ‘like’ the Maugiart Photography Page.