An upstart record label and recording group out here in Albuquerque, New Mexico recently approached me about getting professional photo shoots done to be part of a promotional package that they are putting together to shop around for interested parties. The photos were meant to be done in a stylized GQ fashion.
It’s a new year and what better way is there to kick it off than going to a Comic Convention? If you’re a humongous nerd like myself, there really isn’t any. It’s always fun to go to these conventions and spend time around people with similar interests and just celebrate our enthusiasm for nerd culture. I only got to make it to one day last year but this year I plan on taking the whole weekend in and sharing with you the visual goodness that I capture.
Now last year was one of my first outings for using my d600 and I can tell you, having a full frame camera was a godsend with how little light I was dealing with. It was dark, crowded, and I had to literally had to shoot wide open just to get anything. This year however they have changed locations to the Albuquerque Convention Center which think is great because 1. I’m familiar with the layout of that building from all my outings at ACE (The Albuquerque Comic Expo) 2. Lighting is so much better and 3.Crowding shouldn’t be an issue like it was last year. This year I will pretty much have the same gear and I’m hoping that the photos I get will show a years worth of improvement in my photo skills.
As always I will be focusing on the people who are attending the event and the creative costumes that many of them have come up with. Some of the things I’m expecting to be popular are characters from Guardians of the Galaxy considering how popular that movie became, and probably a ton of Harley Quinn (because that’s just how it is.)
Normally I don’t much care for the celebrity guest that come to these things but there are some notable ones like Sean Patrick Flarney of the Boondock Saints cult classic and Fabian Nicieza who wrote one of my favorite comic book series, Cable and Deadpool. Whether or not I get permission to get photos of the guests is still up in the air, but if that’s a No-No I’m not going to be heart broken about it.
Another really exciting thing about Albuquerque Comic Con is getting to see some awesome people who I don’t get see on a regular basis like the members of the 501st Legion: Dewback Ridge Garrison, some of my cosplay friends who are always bugging me for photo shoots.
Speaking of photo-shoots, I’m probably going to be doing quiet of few of those while I’m there. I’d like to get some new people in on them but if that doesn’t happen it won’t be for lack of effort. Posed shoots are always fun to do at conventions and it’s always great to give cosplayers who have spent so much time and effort a chance to show off their work everywhere and not just at the convention.
So here’s to what hopes to be a spectacular Albuquerque Comic Con and I hope I get plenty of stellar images to share with all of you.
The first shoot of this year I wanted to do something that was super stylized and different from what I’m used to doing. I came up with the concept of a classic black and white portrait session in a sort of neo-noir setting.
Most of the shots that were done inside of my apartment using a 1k light with a soft box balanced for daylight as a key and a 60 watt lamp with a indoor balanced bulb as a back light creating some contrast. Now some of my images came out a little on the under exposed side, but by shooting in raw and making sure I was at least close enough to retain detail, it wasn’t hard to save files in Lightroom where I tone all my images.
A ballsy move on my part was trying to shoot at f:2 on my 85mm f1.8 and 50mm f1.8 in an attempt to get the depth of field as shallow as I could so I could blow out the backgrounds in order to keep some of the things in the background from seeming out of place. The reason this is so ballsy is because you run the risk of not getting your photos in focus properly making images look soft. However I feel like I managed that problem well.
What I wanted to accomplish with this shoot was to actually have a solid concept and style for me to shoot for as opposed to doing what I normally do which is to just show up to a location with whatever the model is already wearing and just messing around until I find something that works. I believe that goal was reached and I hope to take this experience and try and apply that into future shoots by already having a concept in mind. One thing that I can improve on though is keeping a better attention to detail and making sure everything in the scene fits as so that way I don’t have to shoot at f2 to make the image look right.
This weekend I got together a couple of friends who aren’t that camera shy and made a big shindig in the downtown albuquerque area. This was one of the first planed theme shoots and it was the first time that I had any kind of vision going into a shoot…
and as a result I just ended up being one of those shoots where I just wung it as usual. I guess it’s just and old habit that I have but no matter how much pre plan and production in mind I always operate best when I’m just going with the flow and overcoming the challenges.
The big challenge was trying to handle all the different peopled what were present in the shoot and dealing with all their personalities meeting all at the same time. It’s not so much that they were difficult to deal with it’s just that “Too many cooks” problems you deal with when you try to get stuff done.
This year was a midterm election year and for the first time I had to cover politics for class and work. It was definitely a ride to say the least and I got plenty of photos to illustrate the last couple of months.
Let’s start with the Debates.
Mike Frese (R) faces of with Michelle Lujan Grisham(D) in the public broadcasting debate for New Mexico’s 1st Congressional District.
Michelle Lujan Grisham (D) at the KNME Studios just before the Public Broadcast debate against Mike Frese (R).
United States Senator Tom Udall (D) getting camera ready for the public television debate against Allen Weh (R)
Allen Weh (R) Preps notes just before the debate against Sen. Tom Udall (D)
Sen. Tom Udall (D) and challenger Allen Weh (R) Shake hands before engaging in debate on public television.
On top of doing the debates the TV Station I work for, KNME, did a live broadcast on election night.
Producer and correspondent Gwyneth Doland watches election coverage from the control room of KNME.
KNME’s production manager Kevin McDonald directing the stations live election coverage from the technical directing board.
New Mexico In Focus producer Floyd Vasquez monitoring election coverage from the control room of KNME.
KNME Producer Megan Kamerick running election results into the control room for the live broadcast.
UNM Student Carly Granger checking up on election results on her laptop.
Production specialist Antony Rodriguez getting brought up to speed in the KNME control room.
Gwyneth Doland joins Nick Salazar at The Howl broadcast for their election night coverage.
The KNME panelists get set to go for the live broadcast of election coverage.
Director Randy Lantz takes over at direction for KNME’s live broadcast.