One man, one place, one light, (my new kick ass Canon 600 EX RT), one hour, 4 setups. Ready, set, go. This was my first adventure as a newly minted Canon photographer, and I have to say, things weren’t pretty. Getting used to totally new gear, where everything basically turns the opposite way that you think it should, made my brain hurt. But Andy Welsh, my subject, was patient and one of my personal mottos isn’t “Fake it til you make it,” for nothing.
When I am tasked with shooting a portrait fast, I always make sure to scope out my surroundings; looking for doorways I can shoot through, interesting angles, unique light, anything where I can make something out of nothing. Plus I pay close attention to any natural gestures that the subject makes to include his hands to give the image interest and a feeling of intimacy. Finally, I like to do at least three or four setups, cuz’ I want the New York Times to know they are getting their money’s worth (they are). And that’s how the magic happens (or not). You can read the full story of why Andy thinks politicians suck, HERE.
The Newspace Center for Photography Spring 2013 Class guide is out, and they’ve asked me to teach one of their fantastic photo field trips. We’ll spend the weekend at the Portland Rose Festival, which means floats, beauty queens, parades, and carnival rides galore. Plus all participants will get media photo passes to get some behind-the-scenes action.
Some of the topics include:
Learning the building blocks of documentary work.
How to approach strangers. (Ahhhh!)
How to create environmental portraits.
Seeing things from a new perspective
Plus I will be doing one-on-one sessions over our shooting time, so everyone gets a little love. Friday – Sunday, June 7 – 9. June 7: 6 – 9pm |June 8 & 9: 9 – 5pm
Cost is $315. Sign up while we still have space!
As always, had an amazing time co-teaching an editorial photography workshop with Joni Kabana. The best part of the class is that the students will have their images published in an upcoming issue of 1859 Magazine, a publication near and dear to my heart (and not just because the give me awesome assignments).
Participants learned some insider tips regarding fulfilling a magazine editorial assignment and then hit the streets to put the work in action. So excited to see which images will be selected for the layouts. The selected photos from the weekend shooting and critique have been uploaded to 1859 Magazine, where the creative director will select final images for print and online use. Special thanks to Sarah Cross and Christopher Onstott for helping out with the class, and taking these awesome photos. Couldn’t have done it with out you.
I love shooting for the Willamette Week Cheap Eats Guide every year. Perhaps because it is so in line with my sensibilities. Those who know me, know I have a reputation for being a bit….thrifty (I find that word has a bit more dignity than cheap). And here I have a whole guide that says, “Hey Leah, it’s ok you drink pabst. We get you.” Some of the tasty highlights include Boke Bowl, Baowry, Helser’s, the mini-food world that is Ocean and the new, but very popular kid on the block, Bar Dobre. Plus, I got to shoot the cover, which I always love. Can’t beat that poppy yellow background (also known as poster board). Thanks to Lela’s Bistro for providing the local and the slurpable noodles.
This year PhotoLucida is kicking off Portland’s Photo Month with Then. Now. Here. a city wide photo exhibit featuring recent and historical images of Oregon. The exhibit was curated by the fabulous Oregonian photographer Motoya Nakamura and after I slid him a little cash he choose 6 of mine (that was a joke). Had to have the slightly awkward but amusing conversation where I tell a few of my friends that their naked bodies will be splashed along the sides of buildings. Also love that four of the images were shot on film (uh, what is that?) on my trusty TLR Yashica. The first of many screenings will be at the Oregon Historical Society Wednesday, April 3rd 8pm-9:30pm. Hope to see you there.
Hot off the presses….the most recently photographed Alberto Salazar and his stable of runners for the March/April issue of 1859 magazine. Had maybe 5 minutes for the portrait, so it involved a fair bit of lighting set up before hand, dodging raindrops and stealing….ahem, borrowing, a ladder (thanks Nike!). Alberto was a nice guy but definitely not one to let a portrait shoot get in the way of practice. He is an in demand man and I enjoyed watching him seamlessly juggle jogging the track while talking on his phone and giving encouragement to his athletes. Way to multitask Alberto. And thanks to 1859 Editor Kevin Max and my producer Christopher Onstott for keeping me laughing as I lay belly down stalking muddy tennis shoes.
So in love with the layout that Portland Monthly did for my March story on synagogues, The New Shul. One thing I was really intrigued by was the different ways the religion is interpreted. On one end of the spectrum you have a female Rabbi, Ariel Stone, leading the congregation at Shir Tikvah (they even share a space with a Gay-friendly church). On the other end is Congregation Bais Menachem, an ultra-Orthodox Chabad Shul where men and woman are not allowed to touch. And in the middle was Shaarie Torah and Rabbi Zucky, a former Israeli soldier who owns not one, but two purple suits and a pink felt pool table that holds a place of honor in his office. One thing all these places did have in common was how welcoming everyone was. The assignment was a swirl of bagels, sacred scrolls, elaborate stories and open arms. A fabulous blend of down-to-earth-sensibilities mixed with mysticism. Perfect for a girl born to a Jewish father and a Catholic mother.
Have you ever wanted to pick up the phone and hear a request from a magazine, sending you out on assignment? Do you wonder what it is like to to create images that are edited by an art director and then viewed by thousands of readers that help tell a story about a place and its people?
Well now you can have that chance! Join me and Joni Kabana as we guide you through an actual assignment given by 1859 Magazine. You will spend Friday afternoon learning how to approach subjects, create compelling composition, tips on lighting and how to fulfill expectations of an assignment. Then it is out onto the streets Saturday shooting per the magazine’s specifications, followed by a joint critique and editing of all of the images on Sunday.
Images will then be uploaded for 1859 Magazine’s creative director to choose which images will run in their print magazine and online website. Participants whose images are selected for publication will be paid for their work!
Date: March 8 -10, 2013
Time: Friday 7pm – 10pm, Saturday 8am – 6pm, Sunday 9am – 6pm
Location: Kabana Studio 17 SE 3rd Ave., Portland, OR
Limited to 12 participants, so sign up early!
UPDATE: This workshop has one spot left! Please send an email indicating your desire to attend, and we will let you know if there are spaces available.